What higher option to begin the brand new yr than new episodes of “Mr. Queen“? tvN’s zippy weekend rom-com is drawing rave critiques and excessive scores, and it’s completely definitely worth the hype. Not positive if it’s for you simply but? Here’s a take a look at what we cherished (and the one factor we hated) concerning the newest quartet of episodes. I promise you’ll hop proper on the bandwagon.
Warning: spoilers for episodes 5-Eight under.
1. LOVED: So Yong within the kitchen
This present performs quick and unfastened with gender archetypes and stereotypes, and this event is not any totally different. Many modern-day ladies have both heard or come throughout derogatory feedback speaking about how ladies belong within the kitchen. Thus, it’s all of the extra attention-grabbing once we be taught that ladies had been forbidden from working within the palace kitchens throughout the Joseon Dynasty. In reality, So Yong’s (Bong Hwan’s) makes an attempt to prepare dinner for the Queen are met with immense resistance from the top chef, who adamantly tells her that the kitchen is not any place for a girl!
Of course, this isn’t an indication that ladies had been afforded a substantial amount of freedom throughout the Joseon Dynasty. Rather, that is one more factor that So Yong is instructed she will be able to’t do. But this Queen doesn’t take it sitting down, and the way in which she makes use of her expertise (Shin Hye Sun performs a powerful knife twirl!) to win over the palace kitchen employees and the Empress Dowager makes for a win viewers can’t assist however root for.
Quite actually an unbothered Queen!
2. LOVED: King Cheoljong’s depth
Cheoljong might act like a puppet however all of the emotional repression he performs every day ends in him being startlingly passionate when he does let it out. His fury-filled, unsure interactions with So Yong are extremely intense. You can’t assist however maintain your breath after they argue as a result of they’re a lot a match for one another and you may genuinely see how that surprises and confuses Cheoljong. He’s startled to find his Queen’s hidden depths (as he sees them) and equally scared that she may grow to be an enemy as a result of he’s began to care about her. (But after all he received’t admit that simply but!)
You can simply really feel the stress he emanates. This so compelling as a result of Cheoljong has tried so onerous to create these two separate lives they usually’re each failing him. On one hand, he’s constructed a facade the place he’s nothing greater than a ineffective puppet king. On the opposite, he’s a frontrunner of a faction of rebels loyal to him. Neither afford him the chance to be himself. As king, everybody tells him what to do, no matter what he thinks is finest. As chief of the rebels, he orders everybody round for the higher good of the nation, no matter what he desires. There’s nobody who appears at him as a particular person. Everyone desires one thing from him, save his Queen who desires nothing to do with him.
So it isn’t a marvel that he begins to really feel trapped between these worlds when he begins to really feel one thing for So Yong. The rebels would by no means settle for him loving her, and his scheming ministers would use his love for her. The angst is simply so scrumptious, and Kim Jung Hyun serves it proper up with depth and deeply-buried ardour.
3. LOVED: The sheer hilarity in So Yong and Cheoljong’s interactions
Cheoljong might really feel one thing he doesn’t perceive for his unusual Queen, who, with Bong Hwan’s soul within the Queen’s physique, undoubtedly doesn’t really feel the identical (although perhaps we’re getting there!). The distinction is hilarious and this present makes positive to play it to full profit, akin to in Cheoljong’s hilarious misinterpretation of the “no contact precept.”
One of one of the best examples of that is what I’d wish to name the “rain scene” in Episode 5 the place it begins to pour. So Yong dances outdoors, elated, understanding that the lakes and wells will fill, which suggests Jang Bong Hwan will have the ability to return to his unique physique. Cheoljong sees this, which cues mushy piano music as he stares at her. He wonders what sort of girl she is and tries to present her his umbrella. The present brilliantly undercuts this second by switching to its cheeky soundtrack and to Bong Hwan’s perspective, showcasing his glee on the prospect of returning. Bong Hwan even begins twerking, a lot to Court Lady Choi’s utter horror. This usually tender second is showcased for laughs and that truthfully makes it quite a bit higher.
4. LOVED: The present addressing our burning questions
One of the principle questions anybody studying the synopsis for this present may have is: what occurred to Jang Bong Hwan’s physique? Well, that query is quickly answered. Back in 2020 (or is it 2021 there too?) Bong Hwan is on the mercy of his enemies and is at present in a vegetative state. He sees and hears every part round him however can’t talk. Yikes! It’s no marvel he doesn’t complain an excessive amount of when he finds himself in So Yong’s physique as soon as extra after discovering what’s occurred to his physique.
Another query viewers would possible have is: simply how is that this going to work? We know that Bong Hwan and Cheoljong will fall in love (as a result of the legal guidelines of dramas say they have to!) however how this’ll happen is a bit more complicated. Bong Hwan was beforehand horrified on the considered So Yong in his physique presumably flirting with different males, so it’s clear that he’s going to withstand falling for Cheoljong in any respect prices. And with homosexuality being a delicate subject in Korea, it’s unclear and possibly unlikely for tvN to singlehandedly lead a highly-rated drama in that path.
But the present has answered these questions this week. After waking up post-coma, Bong Hwan finds that he can not suppose in his common voice (Choi Jin Hyuk‘s very male voice). Instead, he can solely suppose in So Yong’s voice, and now has all of So Yong’s reminiscences besides. He even begins to really feel what So Yong felt for Cheoljong. It seems this present goes with a gradual merging of the 2 personalities, in order that Bong Hwan successfully turns into So Yong, however we must see in future episodes to see how this performs out.
5. LOVED: The bond between So Yong and Bong Hwan
Bong Hwan and So Yong could also be merging and this will or might not be factor, as a result of it may outcome within the erasure of Bong Hwan’s pleasant character as we all know it (which might be totally tragic as a result of dude bro So Yong is simply implausible). Yet, there’s hope that this will probably be well-executed because of the bond between So Yong and Bong Hwan.
From the very starting, Bong Hwan has tried to grasp So Yong. He didn’t simply dismiss the character and lifetime of the girl whose physique he inhabits. He requested Hong Yeon (Chae Seo Eun) about So Yong and empathized along with her. He usually displays on the lives of ladies within the Joseon Dynasty and the way restricted they’re. He’s protecting of So Yong to the purpose that he even argues with Cheoljong on So Yong’s behalf.
When he wakes up with So Yong’s reminiscences and realizes what Jo Hwa Jin (Seol In Ah) has executed, he places apart his curiosity in Hwa Jin and rebukes her as a substitute on behalf of So Yong and Cheoljong. If this was a distinct present, I’d need Bong Hwan and So Yong up to now!
This bond makes the present all of the extra compelling as a result of the actual So Yong has been left to fend for herself and maintain a stiff higher lip her complete life. She’s been skilled and groomed purely for the aim of being Queen, and tried suicide out of despair when she realized that she would by no means be allowed to be her personal particular person and that the King didn’t need her to be his. And viewers can see that Bong Hwan actually understands that, and that makes for an amazingly likeable character, even when he’s a playboy!
6. HATED: The evil second feminine lead trope
The evil second feminine lead trope involves life once more in Jo Hwa Jin. For a present that’s executed a superb job in pushing boundaries in so some ways, it’s a little disappointing to see it go the evil second feminine lead route. On one hand, it’s good to see that 3/Four of the highly effective scheming figures on this present are ladies. On the opposite hand, it will have been good to see Hwa Jin as a extra noble character, even perhaps taking an curiosity in So Yong to spherical out a wierd love triangle!
Hopefully her complete id received’t revolve round Cheoljong. It can be much more palatable to have Hwa Jin scheme in opposition to So Yong as a result of she desires energy or as a result of she desires revenge for the homicide of her good friend, maidservant, and closest companion Oh Wol (Kim Ju Young).
However, on condition that we nonetheless have but to know the deep darkish secret (fairly actually) that So Yong and Hwa Jin are conserving from Cheoljong maybe there’s hope that Hwa Jin received’t emerge as a cookie cutter feminine villain. A villain however, however I hope this present lets her reasoning be sound sufficient for viewers to really feel for her and marvel if she could also be proper. Given that “Mr. Queen” will probably be 20 episodes lengthy, we definitely have the time to develop her motivations as a villain.
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What are your ideas on Bong Hwan and So Yong’s merging? Non-viewers of the present, do you suppose you’ll give it a attempt? Let us know within the feedback under!
Shalini_A is a very long time Asian-drama addict. When not watching dramas, she works as a lawyer, fangirls over Ji Sung, and makes an attempt to put in writing the best fantasy romance of all time. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram and be happy to ask her something!