Horse Doctor Episode 10

 It’s a feel good episode this one. Of course we can guess who saves the day, but he also amusingly ends up in an awkward position when a certain princess makes advances towards him. I love how she is so spontaneous. Hilarious. 

While Sungha cradles Jinyung in his arms, Kwanghyun looks at him and recognises him as the yangban that Jinyung was talking to in the market. He wonders how come she knows all these aristocrats! Then he remembers that he has to go and get a doctor!

Sungha and Kwanghyun discuss Jinyung’s illness

Jinyung is taken to the makeshift clinic but her condition is not good and at one point she loses consciousness. Sungha’s appearance at the camp is causing a lot of gossip as the other doctors are surprised to hear that Jinyung’s brother is a yangban!  Sungha wants to take Jinhyung back to the capital. (What? When no one  else is allowed to leave the village? Yangban eh? Grrr. They think they can do anything. But at least she tells him that this is not possible.)

It’s not looking good for Jinyung

Kwanghyun is being hard on himself and doubting his theory that this is not smallpox but poison. The others are doubting him too. Only Dr Ko (and Jinyung) believe in him and stick up for him. And so after talking to Jinyung he pulls himself together and decides that he WILL find out where the poison is coming from. He gets the guards to check the river.  He also hears that  recently a trade mission came from Qing and did business with the local officials. But there doesn’t seem to be anything dangerous on the list of items that were traded. It’s a mystery.

Jinyung wants Sungha to go back to the capital, because he is supposed to take the exam soon. But he says he can’t leave now either since he has entered the village. (He’s changed his tune hasn’t he?)  The guards search the water but it’s raining hard and it seems like a waste of time. The men want to go back. But Kwanghyun’s passion keeps everyone hunting.

After searching the river Kwanghyun is devastated – they found nothing 

Myunghwan arrives at the camp and Dr Ko seems pleased to see him. But Injoo is shocked to hear that he has arrived. Does this mean that he doesn’t know she works there? I don’t think they’ve seen each other since the death of their friend all those years ago.

Injoo looks concerned at the thought of Myunghwan’s arrival

But Dr Ko is not so pleased to see Myunghwan when he hears that Myunghwan has been given authority by the king to take over. And he has brought herbs to treat smallpox! (두창) (Come on Myunghwan, even WE know it’s not smallpox and we aren’t even doctors. :) )

Myunghwan starts storming around throwing out orders and changing everything until he realises that Jinyung and Sungha are in the village too. This makes him think. Suddenly the situation is even more serious for him, because he may not really care if villagers die, but he will do anything for his own children. Maybe he will have to listen to Kwanghyun after all.

Myunghwan arrives at the camp

Kwanghyun comes back from the river with no luck. They found nothing there. But then he meets a young boy playing with an abalone shell which he found in the river. When Kwanghyun hears that there were lots of shells thrown away in the river, he goes to take a look.  He realises that the abalone was supposed to be traded in Joseon but went bad on the way so was thrown away in the water. Vinegar was thrown away too and nobody realised that abalone and vinegar together are a lethal combination. (Is this true?) Kwanghyun knows about this because he grew up by the sea.

Myunghwan doesn’t believe any of it. How can abalone and vinegar be poisonous? However, they don’t have any other suggestions right now. And Jinyung trusts Kwannghyun, so she asks him to experiment on her: she will take the medicine first to see if she recovers. So an antidote is made and Jinyung calmly drinks it. Could it really be seafood poisoning?

Myunghwan is dubious about Kwanghyun’s theory of seafood poisoning

Yes, it could! Sure enough Jinyung starts to recover. The red spots leave her body and her fever disappears. Dr Ko is pleased (and probably relieved) and Kwanghyun is congratulated. But Myunghwan seems full of mixed emotions. He must be relieved that Jinyung is safe but annoyed that she recovered under Dr Ko’s watch. This is NOT good news for Myunghwan and he knows it as he glares into the distance doing his impression of Darth Vadar.

Sungha, relieved and smiling, comes to see Jinyung. But his smile fades when he notices her chatting and giggling with Kwanghyun! I think Kwanghyun is going to make another enemy … However over at the palace the king is pleased that the crisis is over. Now which doctor will he promote? ( I think we can all guess )

Jinyung gets better

Still at the palace, the princess is so upset she can’t eat. She’s in LOVE and upset that she could do nothing to help Kwanghyun when he was in danger. But when she gets word that he is safe and back at the palace she rushes off to see him. The lady-in-waiting doesn’t want her to do this – it is so inappropriate – but she rushes off anyway straight into the arms of Kwanghyun. OMG Is she really hugging him In Front Of Everyone !!!

No that was just a daydream. She is actually hugging the lady in waiting… How cute :)

But then Kwanghyun comes running up. He is so polite to her and she looks a little upset – (perhaps because she is aware that their levels are so different that she can’t show her real feelings. It’s ironic that he seems to be able to sweet talk the princess and say exactly the right thing to her, but he often annoys Jinyung by saying exactly the wrong thing her! I like that there is so much humour in this drama – more than in previous dramas directed by Lee Byung Hun.)

The restaurant is back in business and Lord Jung makes an appointment to meet Doctor Ko there. Lord Jung wants to test the water and find out exactly what Dr Ko is thinking – does he want to be promoted? His aim must be to persuade Dr Ko that Myunghwan would be the better man for the job.

He flatters Dr Ko to find out what he’s up to. And unfortunately discovers that Dr Ko IS interested in becoming the chief physician. But the whole evening backfires on Lord Jung – his intention was to dissuade Dr Ko from accepting the job, but his flattery has the opposite effect as Dr Ko says he now feels more confident to accept the job! (Lord Jung’s face is a picture as he  chokes on his drink. I think it’s the first time we’ve seen him lose that smug look. ha ha)  Dr Ko acts like he has no idea what Lord Jung is up to. But he does know and THAT is why he wants to take the job. Myunghwan is furious when he hears that Dr Ko has taken the job.

Myunghwan hears that Dr Ko will be the one promoted

The young vets are missing Jinyung. She is still convalescing. And Kwanghyun wonders where she lives worrying that someone should check on her. Dr Ko arrives and reminds Kwanghyun that he wants Kwanghyun to teach him what he knows. He really shows a lack of arrogance as he is still prepared to learn from someone much younger and lower in rank than himself. So Kwanghyun shows him how to apply acupuncture on a horse.

Dr Ko willingly learns from Kwangyun about acupuncture

Sungha is taking the civil service exam ( a re-enactment of the civil service exam is carried out on Hangul Day every year in Seoul ) He finishes very quickly much to everyone’s surprise. But he wants to leave because Jinyung is waiting. (I am the only one that thinks he is over confident?) He jokes around with Jinyung about her closeness to Kwanghyun. (Is he really fine about it though?)

Jinyung proudly waits for Sungha to come out of the exam

The princess looks serious as she goes off for an appointment with the queen mother. She asks for permission to leave the palace to see her friend Jinyung who is still ill. Permission is granted and the princess’ face breaks into a smile. (We knew it. We know the real reason why she wants to get out of the palace! And who she really wants to see …) Sure enough she goes to Jinyung’s house but calls for Kwanghyun to come and look at her ‘sick dog’ ha ha.

The princess drools over Kwanghyun

Jinyung is summoned to see the princess. But when she arrives, she finds the servants  waiting outside the grounds. The princess has sent the servants away because she wants to be alone with Kwanghyun! She uses any excuse to get close to him, putting her hand on his pretending that it’s all for the sick puppy’s benefit. He doesn’t know what to do. So funny. She daydreams about leaning in and kissing him. And then she does it. She ACTUALLY does it. She leans in and kisses him on the cheek. And Jinyung has just arrived and sees this. We end with everyone in shock – Kwanghyung, Jinyung, and even the princess!


Well, I didn’t think she would actually do it. I didn’t think she would kiss him. It’s so cute that in this strict Confucian society the princess is so impulsive. She can’t control her emotions and it’s adorable. Although it will probably land her or others around her in trouble later. Surely Kwanghyun would be the one punished if this was discovered even though it’s not his fault. The strict rules of behaviour between men and women and the rules of behaviour between the different classes makes this scene shocking but very funny. It has to be my favourite scene so far!  Right now I’m rooting for the princess and Kwanghyun!





3 thoughts on “Horse Doctor Episode 10

  • November 18, 2012 at 10:33 am

    I did a bit of research about the whole vinegar and abalone thing – and what I discovered is that what might have occurred is a case of botulism.

    Botulism is an anaerobic neurotoxic spore that can be food-bourne, and is most often associated with ingestion of food rather than introduction into wounds or the airway. Botulism will grow on shellfish, including mussels, and can be found in a variety of canned foods.

    What it requires is a low acidity environment in which to grow. It only takes a very small amount of botulism to sicken a human, even kill a human. Symptoms would be the same in cattle as well.

    Abalone, by itself, can cause skin rashes and ulcerations due to a toxic oil or an allergen to shellfish. But when the abalone was spoiled, it developed botulism, and the botulism grew in a low-acidity environment because vinegar is a base, and then it was introduced into the water stream.

    This is why fishermen do not store raw abalone in vinegar, apparently. However, you can cook abalone in vinegar, and it is apparently tasty, because there are several recipes on the internet about that.

    Botulism is killed when introduced to high temperatures. Boiling water would kill the spore. This information is available at: – pg 10-15.

  • November 21, 2012 at 5:10 pm

    Wow thanks for the info. I thought there must be some truth to this abalone and vinegar storyline but never followed up on it.

  • February 23, 2014 at 6:14 pm

    Wow that is some in depth research..great info. Thanks.

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