DRAMA CLUB RECAP: The Night Watchman's Journal Episode 7
Hello again, everyone! Grab your leather jacket, fedora, and bullwhip as we go on an adventure looking for treasure. Beware of mad kings, politicians, assassins, evil priests, an angry dowager, a naive girl, and a two face guard. Join the hunt with Unnichan and myself as we don’t have to worry about snakes on this adventure.
The hunt begins for the treasonous prince but has King Ki San fallen for his own ruse?
Unnichan: I’m all for “fake it, till you make it,” but Ki San screaming and carrying on with the Ministers seemed a little deeper than acting at this point. There’s no doubt he needs the “curse” lie to spurn the appropriate fervor and frenzy to find and slay Rin, but dude looks to have sniffed some forgetting salts. For though he could have every reason to believe Rin may want him dead (though he has no evidence of such beyond his own conscience), wasn't it he who planted these tools of root magic at his stepmother's memorial? Tsk, tsk, Ki San. I won't say it's the worst idea in the world to buy into a little of your own fantasy, but it can be to no one's benefit to dupe yourself entirely, whether it's to defy and ignite the Ministers or not. But I am glad Prime Minister isn’t buying it and charges him to search for whomever attack Rin as well.
Tiara: Ki San is really laying it on thick. I do love how he says *air quotes* “ring will be captured “. What he really means is “I’m going to Rin the brat once and for all”. I believe it was Sadam’s lackey who put all the “curse” items in Rin’s place. Ki San was worried over Rin being able to see ghosts as there is a rule who can see ghosts will become King. The King was freaking out as Rin must be the rightful King. Sadam blew smoke at Ki San by telling him the prince tried the curse him and there is evidence of said curse. It is really Sadam being the mastermind behind the who setting up Rin. Ki San is just taking this curse thing to the bank since he knows Rin is the true King. This is a way he can get rid of Rinthrough proper channels. Considering his imagery, self wanted to outright kill him, but Ki San doesn’t want to become a Mad King. Too late.
Unnichan: Of course, it is Sadam who is pulling all the strings, but Ki San knows full well, Rin is guilty of nothing more than possibly lying about seeing ghosts. At the end of the day, Ki San is the source of Rin's frame up because for all he knows, his suggestion is why it was done. I suppose what I need to know now is, how will be react when he realizes, he’s the one that’s been manipulated? Or by that point, will he be so far gone, it won’t even matter?
Soo Hyun becomes a villain to save her Prince
Tiara: Soo Ryun is learning this isn't a fairy tale and has to let go of her Prince to save him and protect her father. Poor Soo Ryun for having to make a choice. I can’t say I blame her for wanting to protect her father as he is family. I don’t think she realized the political game Rin tried to explain episodes ago. Now, she understands why Rin is the way he is. He is a political chess piece to be used to gain favor or power in the political ring. On the other hand, Rin feels like he has been betrayed. At this point, he doesn't have anyone on his side, but the three ghosts. It is sad to see him at his lowest point, but this just means we get to see him rebuilt to become the King he will become.
Unnichan: I’m not sure Soo Ryun was protecting her father, or that she understands what is actually going on. She's believed she could trust her father and live in her rose field selecting flowers for her bouquet, waiting patiently for Rin to return to his rightful place with her as his bride. I do have a problem with her trying to solve Rin's problem by pushing him away and asking him to run and hide (AGAIN!). Which makes it painfully obvious how little she knows this kid. I too believe that this will be the last time Rin is down and out, for perhaps now he will begin to gather strength and fight back.
Tiara: If not to protect her father’s honor and pride, why didn’t Soo Ryun just tell Rin her father plan to use him as a shield? Rin has to know the Prime Minister will do whatever to protect himself as he seen first hand as a child. Yet, she doesn’t know enough about royal politics and doesn’t see Rin without his Prince title. I’m with you on Soo Ryun making Rin’s choice for him. She should have at least given him the right to make the choice of staying with the Prime Minister knowing he planned to use him. The only thing this scene accomplished was making Rin acknowledged the ghosts as they are the only ones on his side.
Unnichan: Exactly, there is the issue. Drama is forcing several narrative follow-throughs, instead of allowing them to take a natural course. And I personally believe, it's more likely, Soo Ryun made her choice out of confusion and desperation, over protection.
Dowager vs Sadam, who will win?
Tiara: The Dowager gets the chance to do what all the viewers wanted to do, bitch slap Sadam. First, a big thank you to her. Second, please run and hide now. He did not take being put in his place well as he went and threw a tantrum like a two year old. The fact the Dowager challenged Sadam means he plans to set up her disgrace and downfall. You would think she would know how to play the political game better than anyone else she has been in control of the court for years. She knows Ki San can be irrational, but he is paranoid. Come on, everyone knows Rin was to be Crown Prince until their father the King went possessed. She had a chance to make a deeper connection with her grandson, Ki San. She could have been the one controlling him instead of Sadam, but the damage is already done and it is the countdown until the Dowager ends up dead. Hopefully she has learned with one of the maids dead, she needs to figure out some political power to switch out the mad and crazy King for another one.
Unnichan: Why wasn’t a bigger fight made against the evil priest bringing his whodo voodoo back in the palace, in the first place, so this slap would actually mean something? The Dowager is a disappointment in my book. I just can’t help but wonder what on earth she has been doing all this time. It would make much more sense for her to have had some type of impact on Ki San beyond the rules and regulations of palace living. It feels like she’s spent too much time telling him to sit up straight and behave, than actually be a person of real of influence. She and Prime Minister put too little importance on the power of Sadam and his machinations, and now they’re caught in his game. It’s true, she slapped him, but I couldn’t revel in it, for no matter how you cut it, what she did felt like a tap from a powerless old woman concerned about protocol, when she should be focused on keeping one grandson out of the looney bin and the other from the chopping block, not to mention a kingdom out of Hell.
Tiara: I agree about the Dowager being a disappointment. In most historical dramas, the Dowager has a massive amount of control over the royal court. Can't say the same for the character in this drama. I’m aware of her hand in getting rid of the King, putting the now Prime Minister in his spot and placing Ki San on the throne, but where is her influence on other court issues. Not to mention, her reign on Ki San is lacking. If the drama would have set up the Dowager with more authority, she Smackdown with Sadam would’ve been profound in the narration. For me, I will cheer when anyone smacks him because I sure can’t reach him to do it myself. I don’t want to break my computer. His Shatner acting is driving me up the wall.
Do Ha feels uneasy with Sadam, but it’s too late or is it?
Tiara: Do Ha is the most stupidest girl ever. First, Rin tried to stop you from going to the evil man who plans to kill you. Yet, she doesn’t believe Rin would actually want to keep Do Ha alive. Of course, she goes to the palace and Sadam is as creepy as he always is by making her walk ahead of her. Why do you allow him to walk behind you when you have no idea where you're going? Is this like going upstairs in a horror film? Yay for her being able to break his spell. Let’s hope she is able to gain some powers to stop Sadam in the future. I guess I can’t be too angry since they found the Night Watchman’s secret lair. Does this mean we will start gaining some power to be able to bring down Sadam?
Unnichan: I knew that bracelet was charmed and aren’t we glad Do Ha got it back just in time? The girl is a dingbat, but drama clearly wants us to believe there's more to her without actually cluing us in on how that's possible. It makes sense that she is naive and trusting and is consistent in making poor choices, but how does she plan to find Eonni without an actual real "plan," you know with more than one step? The only thing we can be grateful for is her persistence and the willingness to listen to her spidey sense, once that bracelet practically rang her wrist raw.
Tiara: Ha Ha! You're right, Do Ha doesn’t have a plan to find her sister. Apparently, she is winging it. Thank goodness for the Spidey sense.
Sadam finally finds what he was looking for but waking the Dragon may prove to be more difficult than he thought
Unnichan: With his failed spiritual seduction of Do Ha, I was concerned Sadam would have a bad week. But lo’ and behold, the Dragon god is found--- just not quite up to his glorious godly self. Sadam hoped the Dragon was just dormant, waiting to be awoken but it seems it’s going to take a whole city full of evil to get this god to his rightful place. Which is good for all of us, because that gives Sadam more reason to go cooking about the Palace, gasing his potpourri around, bringing about the total chaos and destruction we all know and love.
Tiara: Hey, I was hoping for the good guys to have the one up on Sadam for a change. Boo!!! He found his Dragon God, but it does give us an idea what the next few episodes will be about. Is this how we get our Night Watchman back on duty? I do have a question maybe someone can answer. If the Dragon is a God, why does he need help from Sadam? The definition of a God is “a superhuman being or spirit worshiped as having power over nature or human fortune”. I’m not sure if we can call the dragon a God, but an evil immortal creature.
Unnichan: Gods in many mythologies and ritual practices are known to be capricious and limited in their powers, so it's not extremely surprising Dragon Stone needs Sadam's help. However, are we really sure that's the case or how Sadam perceives it? For now, that's my real question. He's already had one snag because his powers are finite and he's not omniscient, so, I'm positive there's more hang ups concerning his god and his assistance up ahead.
Tiara: Gods do get power from those who pray to them, but I’m still not sure if we can call the Dragon a God. Later in the episode, we see Sang Hyun in a boat talking to a grim reaper. Does this mean there is an Emperor Jade much like Arang and the Magistrate? Unlike Arang, the mythologies of this universe hasn’t really been explained, to understand who is in charge or who isn’t. Heck, we haven’t gotten an answer to why the ghosts are allowed to roam the earth? Isn’t earth for the living? What is Sadam? Why does Sadam get to cheat death? Eight episodes in and we still have no idea how the supernatural world works.
Moo Seok joins Joseon Undercover
Unnichan: *sigh* I have to admit I hate that our bromance is beginning under false pretenses, however, narratively, it makes for a good story. Ki San is paranoid and though this is frightfully annoying, it’s not uncommon, nor solely chalked up to his mental imbalance. But rather, the initial cause of his psychic woes. Most kings find themselves in isolation and isolation lends to self-reliance leaving one alone with his thoughts and opinions rattling around, becoming the only voice he can trust. The problem is human beings need other people and their views to keep them sane and functioning properly. Moo Seok, trusts the King for at one time, the man was stable and perhaps a wise, ginger friend. And though he is following the King’s command, it’s a choice he’s made in the only way he knows how to protect him. I’ve always believed that Moo Seok had a one track mind; one goal and driving force--- but now I’m beginning to wonder if he’s also someone who wants to do it all. Therefore, I wonder, how long it will take him to find his loyalties divided?
Tiara: Oh, how true Unnichan. I too hate how the Bromance of Moo Seok and Rin is continuing without a bit of truth to it. Moo Seok is loyal to a fault towards his King, but is willing to challenge his King if there is no evidence to prove guilt. Which is going to be his downfall with his King. Undercover work isn’t an easy thing to do and I get the feeling Moo Seok’s beliefs will be challenged, His black and white world is going to be thrown into bright colors. I’ve said this before, Moo Seok is going to learn the hard way about his wishy washy his King happens to be. Ki San is going to believe Moo Seok’s acting of being loyal to Rin and mark him as an enemy of the Kingdom. Then we shall see if Moo Seok isn’t an emotionless human being willing to only think about the evidence in front of him.
Unnichan:Being very little transpired this episode, Sang Heon smiling was by far my biggest highlight. Sadam’s obvious sinister behavior keeps me laughing each and every episode. His feigned confusion and concern is what makes his character one of the most fun to watch. And though the scene was overly dramatic and full of blatant exposition, I also appreciated Rin setting Do Ha’s tantrum to right. It’s not that she didn’t have reason, but I liked that he questioned why she never thought on her own. The scene was certainly more for the audience than the characters but I appreciated it all the same, for too often in dramas these types of misunderstandings are exhausted due to the simple fact that characters don’t choose to use reason or logic.
Tiara: Finally, the Night Watchman Journal has been found. About time. One of the things the story has done intertwines those who believe in ghost and those who don’t. We the viewers know how powerful the magic Sadam carries, which makes me hold my breath when those who have no idea challenge him. I’m glad there are characters who see Sadam and don’t like him on principle. They may not have any gifts but they worked in the political game to know when someone is cunning. I’m right there with you Unnichan about Sang Heon’s smile.
Unnichan: Our mad King Ki San is killing Handmaidens left and right and everyone is charged to keep mum. I get that this isn’t something you want to get around, but you’d think Dowager had learned her lesson 12 years ago with her own son. Does she want another massacre and beheading on her hands?
Tiara: One scene with the ghosts this episode… BOO!!! I too have to agree about Ki San being about to murder people left and right because he is King. The last King who went on a killing spree was dethroned by death. Hello, someone needed to punish the Ki San and replace him like yesterday.
Unnichan: Rin has made strides with not only acknowledging his ghostly followers, but stumbling upon the Night Watchman’s Journal. He’ll definitely keep it a secret for now, but our heroes are all in one spot so there’s bound to be some bonding and further secrets revealed.
Tiara: The Night Watchman will be called for duty to stop the evil ghost from entering the city. Moo Seok will be the next to challenge Sadam.
Hunters, what treasure did you find in this adventure? A Dragon has been found and a bracelet has been returned. It looks like this chapter is closed and a new one is about to begin. The secret of the past is coming to light. The Night Watchman may not be long dead and might have to come out for duty once again. Let us know about your adventure this night and come back again for the next adventure.
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