Post by ajk on Feb 26, 2017 0:10:19 GMT -5
They sure didn't hold anything back for a first episode, did they. Some viewers probably didn't care for the amount of torture and killing, but this was during a terrible period and those things really happened so I didn't have a problem with it (as long as we don't get that in every episode). The only part of all of it that I didn't care for was putting the crying little girl in the middle of it. That was manipulative and went too far.
Nice opening sequence. Here's the text in case anybody wants to read it again:
"Winter, 1217, fourth year of the reign of King Gojong. The warrior monks were in revolt. In 1215, Mongols drove the Khitan into Koryo's northern territory. The battles still raged. To aid the king, General Choe Chungheon assumed the title of Overlord. The Choe House brought stability to a nation beset by internal strife, a nation devastated by over 100 years of corruption. But with reform came abuses. Across Koryo people joined the resistance. Among them were the warrior monks."
We saw the actors' breath in the cold outdoors in the village scene. Score one for authenticity.
Got some major Shin Don vibes from the Musang scenes with the abbot. Wonder how far they'll go with that parallel, if it's intentional. But at least this monk has short monk hair rather than long flowing TV-star hair. That's another good sign for the series.
Hey monk dude, you don't have to snuff out a candle with your fingers--ouch. You're allowed to blow it out.
Archers in the first seventeen minutes--yay! But wait, the soldiers guarding the city gate didn't have any? You know, the guys on top of the wall, with that big advantage? Ugh.
"Too many losses, too much liquor, and the complaints piled up." Not only was that hilarious, one of the best lines ever in a historical, it truly does explain how those monks could have snapped and turned back on the leadership.
The visual transition from the full prayer room to the emptier one as we hear of monks being executed, great idea.
Anybody know what that game was that Choe Chungheon was playing? The subtitling said "chess" but it wasn't the chess we know. It looked a lot like like Go, just with bigger pieces and the pieces had writing on them.
Why did Musang get his own horse and rope when everybody else was in a line? I don't like things like that. So obviously staged, it reminds us we're watching a TV show.
I'm happy to see Jong Bo Suk in this one after seeing his great performance in Shin Don. And Jung Sung Mo, who plays the other Choe son, he was in Shin Don and QSD and was excellent in both, so I'm sure he'll give us another interesting character in this one. Only problem is Jong Bo Suk being the older son. No. Sorry but he clearly looks younger than the "younger" son.
Speaking of which...Musang and Wola grew up together? Huh? Is this another one of those time-travel dramas? Come on, he's old enough to be her father. Stop it already. Somebody blew it on the casting. Wola's cute, though.
Overall I thought this was a real good start for a series. Not much plot development, mostly just establishing the setting and the political situation, but that's perfectly fine for a first episode. Definitely looking forward to the next one.
p.s. It was like clowns coming out of a Volkswagen--how many Choes were they gonna throw at us in one episode? Wow. One more and I'd have started singing: "I've got that Choe, Choe, Choe, Choe, down in my heart"!