I hate this episode. We’ve only just been introduced to Sir Lee – the possible new love interest for Ye Jin – but now suddenly with very little warning he is arrested and tortured and given the death penalty for treason! I didn’t enjoy watching this at all. It just made me angry.
Sir Lee has a letter delivered to Ye Jin in which he pours out his feelings of guilt over pouring out his feelings of love to her last time! Meanwhile he meets with Heo Jun for a drink and pours out his feelings of jealousy towards Heo Jun – since Heo Jun has Ye Jin’s heart. Suddenly soldiers burst in and arrest Sir Lee for ‘treason’. But Sir Lee is not surprised about this – not after he went against his superior during the murder investigation.
Sir Lee is arrested for treason
At the hospital Heo Jun and Ye Jin make eye contact and Ye Jin has tears in her eyes. (What is the meaning of this? Does she know that something bad is going to happen to Sir Lee or is she accepting that if she wants to be with Sir Lee she has to let go of Heo Jun? I’m not sure here). Ye Jin goes to meet Sir Lee at the Yanghwa ferry at 4pm. (He asked to meet her in his letter) but he doesn’t turn up because he is busy getting tortured.
While Ye Jin waits at their meeting place, Sir Lee is getting tortured at the Ministry of Punishments ..
Sir Lee remains dignified throughout his ordeal and even after torture he refuses to accept that he is guilty of anything. Afterwards Heo Jun goes to the prison cell to look after the criminals – they must be kept alive until they are officially executed. Sir Lee is still racked with guilt that he has made Ye Jin’s situation difficult by confessing his feelings to her. He asks Heo Jun not to tell Ye Jin about his upcoming death – but she is going to find out soon enough.
Heo Jun is distraught as Sir Lee prepares to die
Because one of the nurses has to give the criminal the poison – and we can all guess who is going to be chosen to do this. As Ye Jin steps forward holding the tray with the bowl of poison she recognises Sir Lee and freezes. She can’t move so the other nurse, So Hyun, has to step forward and take over. Heo Jun looks on helplessly. It’s a horrible, horrible. scene. Sir Lee is noble to the end and merely prays to his father for forgiveness because he couldn’t do all that he promised to do. His superior sneaks about in the background clearly feeling guilty. (And so he should) Sir Lee drinks the poison and collapses onto the ground. Later that night Ye Jin cries in her room. And in another part of the palace, Heo Jun sits alone drinking, his hand shaking with anger. (He must know something fishy is going on here)
Sir Lee is forced to drink poison
Meanwhile Se Hee, the nurse who fancies Do Ji (and the one who spilt hot medicine on herself so that he would treat the ‘injury’ on her chest) brings him a drink and snacks while he’s on night duty. At first he scolds her as he shouldn’t drink on night duty but when she confesses her feelings to him he is speechless. He refuses her advances but she is not prepared to give up.
Do Ji has an admirer
Yang Tae announces that he is going to get married to Yoowol the maid who works for Do Ji’s family. But it seems that someone needs to officially ask Do Ji’s mum for permission for her employee to get married. So Heo Jun’s mum represents Yang Tae’s family and goes to ask. But Do Ji’s mum says NO! To add insult to injury she suggests haughtily that since Heo Jun’s salary is so low, Da Hee can do odd jobs at her place since they need the money. grrrrr.
Heo Jun’s mum asks if Yang Tae can get married!
Looks like there could be some good news for Heo Jun as the new deputy minister of court medicine is Lord Sung, the general from Changnyung who wrote a recommendation letter for Heo Jun after he cured his sick wife! Oh this is good.
The new deputy minister of medicine remembers Heo Jun saving his wife’s life
Suddenly Gong Bin’s brother is taken ill. Do Ji is in charge of treating him and diagnoses Bell’s palsy – a kind of facial paralysis. Coincidently Heo Jun treats a patient with the same sickness in the welfare clinic. Do Ji is ambitious and can see that if he treats Gong Bin’s family well the next promotion for him will be to become the king’s doctor. He tells Gong Bin that the illness can be treated in 7 days. (although he believes it will be cured faster than this – if the patient recovers faster then Do Ji believes this will make him look good and Gong Bin will be more satisfied!)
Heo Jun and Do Ji both have patients suffering from facial paralysis!
Looks like the new deputy minister is going to shake things up. He turns up at the welfare clinic for an inspection unannounced and realises that there are not enough doctors working there – um, because the top doctors are sleeping in the break room! He tells them to get to work. Then he meets Heo Jun and is pleased and surprised to see him. But the deputy has come from court where Do Ji told his patient it would take 7 days to cure his illness. Now he hears that Heo Jun’s patient will be cured in 3 days and he becomes suspicious of Do Ji.
But after three days Heo Jun’s patient is not fully recovered and his patient starts complaining…
Do Ji and Heo Jun’s patients
I was confused by the timing of this episode – Sir Lee’s death seems to be very sudden and rushed. Did Im Ho have another acting job and have to leave the drama suddenly? I can’t explain why we have been given this short time to get to know Sir Lee – only just enough time to start to get interested in him, a man who could clearly have been a potential husband for Ye Jin. But Ye Jin hasn’t had time to fall in love with him either. The first time we see him he saves Ye Jin from the ‘kidnappers’. Then we see him drinking with his superior and uncomfortable when Ye Jin arrives as an ‘entertainer’. Then in the next episode he steps it up and shows that he is an honest man working with Heo Jun and trying to do the right thing arresting baddies. But now suddenly he is arrested and put to death! What is the meaning of this?
I get that his character allows us to experience the ruthlessness of court and we can realise that there are obviously some ambitious players in the government too, not just in the hospital. But his death also seems put here to emphasise that Ye Jin’s fate is to be alone her whole life – or just to stay longingly by Heo Jun’s side. She is portrayed as the perfect Joseon woman. Does she have ANY flaws? She works hard, she’s intelligent, she’s honest and loyal. But when someone finally comes along, who she could possibly be tempted to have a relationship with, he is killed off before she even has a chance to get to know him. Why couldn’t this part of the story have been stretched out more? I don’t like the harshness of Ye Jin’s fate!