Scarlet Heart Ryeo Episode 20 (Final) Recap

The finale episode is a good one…yes, it’s true!

Scarlet Heart Ryeo Episode 20 (Final) Recap

This is it…the last episode of Scarlet Heart Ryeo…let’s see what the writer has in store…

Fourteenth Prince Wang Jung (Ji Soo) greets Hae Soo (IU) as she arrives at his home. As Wang Jung offers his hand, Hae Soo remembers Wang So offering his hand. Inside Wang Jung tells her that the King has forbidden a wedding but he still whipped up a small celebration. He assures Hae Soo that even though they are married, he will just consider them friends. Really? Hae Soo says she doesn’t care about such matters. Really? This is her house, which is close to his house. He returns the hair pin and thanks her for calling for his help. He leaves unaware that she’s mesmerized by the hair pin Wang So gave her. She opens her trunk and finds Wang So writing “I came to sit by the water, but the clouds came”.  She suppresses tears. Wang Jung gets frustrated while practicing his sword and Hae Soo walks over to soothe him. He sees someone watching them. He puts on a show of affection. Then he tells her the doctor is here to examine her.

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The doctor tells her she’s pregnant which Hae Soo already knew. Wow! I didn’t see that coming. Wang Jung is shocked. The doctor warns her that her heart palpitations and other health issues concern him. Hae Soo doesn’t care that the pregnancy will stress her body. As long as the baby is healthy, everything else doesn’t matter. Wang Jung doesn’t want Wang So to find out. The doctor warns Hae Soo to avoid cold wind and rest.

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Meanwhile, back at the palace…King Wang So (Lee Joon Gi) is livid to get the report of the affection between Wang Jung and Hae Soo. Ji Mong’s reassuring words about Hae Soo’s affectionate nature don’t soothe Wang So.

Hae Soo draws Wang So and suffers a heart palpitation. This time it is Wang So himself that spies on her. Wang Jung sees her clutching her heart and sweeps her into his arms and into his house saying she could harm that baby. Did Wang So hear that?

Wang Jung and Hae Soo laugh over how they first met and the fun times they had when they were young. Wang So listens outside and hears their laughter. He leaves.

Wang So tells Ji Mong to stop updates about Wang Jung and Hae Soo. That means he does not know she’s pregnant with his baby, because he’d never leave her alone if he knew.

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Hae Soo has a decent collection of Prince rock portraits. She continues to imagine Wang So by her side. Their happiness is sweet but just a dream.

6 months later…

Wang Jung waits for the news about the crying baby. It’s a girl! Wang Jung orders the midwife to declare the baby stillborn and be careful what she tells the wet nurse.

The doctor tells Wang Jung that Hae Soo is weak. Wang Jung praises the daughter as beautiful and strong. With a tear down her face, Hae Soo gives Wang Jung a letter for Wang So. She tells Wang Jung she wants to see Wang So. Wang Jung hides his disappointment but dispatches the letter to the King. Hae Soo suffers a ringing and lies in bed weaker than ever.

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Wang So receives the letter. He sees Wang Jung’s handwriting (Wang Jung switched his outer layer for Hae Soo’s so Wang So does not know the letter is from Hae Soo). Wang So refuses read the letter. Wang So refuses to meet with the messenger.

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Hae Soo looks dreadful and is saddened that Wang So refuses to come. Wang Jung tries to cheer Hae Soo with musicians and flowers. The song is the one that caused the King to fall in love with a court woman. Hae Soo smiles at the song she sang at Wang Eun’s birthday party. What a happy slice of time that was. Hae Soo asks if Wang Jung remembers promising treating her life as his. She asks him to care for her daughter and not take her to the palace. Wang Jung knows these are the requests of a dying woman. Hae Soo says Wang So will not come. She leans into Wang Jung. He tells her that in her next life she must remember him. She says she’ll forget everything in her next life. She dies. Wang Jung cries. Awk, tears! Hae Soo, you frustrated me, but your kindness and warmth was undeniable and a positive influence on our princes.

Wang So can’t believe the news. Ji Mong tells him the letter were from Hae Soo. Wang So tears into the letter and sees the outer envelope was Wang Jung’s handwriting but the inner envelope and letter was from Hae Soo. He reads “Life is like a dream. Right and wrong. Love and hate. We get buried and leave the earth without a trace. Are you still angry with me? The opposite of love isn’t hate. It was to throw someone away. I left you with hate not love. Did I leave to rest in comfort? I love you still. When you threw everything aside to stand by my side in the rain, when you threw your body in front of the arrow, I can never forget you. I long for you. I miss you. But I cannot go to you. I’m tired of the heartlessness of a kind man. I hope we can meet again. I wait for you every day.” Wang So weeps as he reads the words he unknowingly denied himself. He rides to Hae Soo.

Thirteenth Prince Baek Ah (Nam Joo Hyuk) finds Wang Jung clutching a vase of ashes and looking at Hae Soo’s Prince rock collection. Awk, tears! Wang Jung hands Baek Ah a letter from Hae Soo. Before he can read it, Wang So bursts in the door yelling for Hae Soo. This is going to be painful to watch. Wang So calls for Hae Soo. He spies the vase that Wang Jung is holding. Wang Jung looks at Wang So and asks what took him so long. Wang So grabs Wang Jung and says he disguised the envelope’s true contents. He yells he didn’t know that Hae Soo’s letters were inside. Wang Jung is shocked and explains he did that because Wang So’s and Hae Soo’s handwriting was similar. Wang Jung yells that he had spies watching the house, so Wang So knew she was dying. Baek Ah snaps that Wang So didn’t want to hear reports about their happy marriage so he stopped them. Wang So weeps and grabs the vase with Hae Soo’s ashes. He tells her they are going home. Awk, the tears are flowing! Wang Jung tries to stop Wang So claiming Hae Soo was his wife. Wang So counters that Hae Soo may be dead, but “she’s my person”. Awk! Baek Ah intervenes and reminds Wang Jung that Hae Soo would want to be with Wang So. Breathing hard, Wang So staggers out of the room with Hae Soo in his hands. Baek Ah tells Wang Jung for Hae Soo’s sake, don’t fight with Wang So anymore.  Baek Ah says the Hae Soo was stuck in the middle of the princes for her entire life. Wang Jung weeps with abandon. Baek Ah realizes the Wang Jung truly loved Hae Soo. Baek Ah sees the pain that love is causing and calls Wang Jung foolish. He hugs Wang Jung.

Back at their spot, Wang So holds the vase. He remembers moments with Hae Soo.

Ninth Prince Wang Won (Yoon Sun Woo) stares at a bowl of poison he’s offered. When Baek Ah arrives Wang Won asks if he’s there to confirm his death. Baek Ah hands him a note from Hae Soo. Wang Won is surprised commenting that Hae Soo has been dead for a while. Baek Ah says that Hae Soo’s will requested Chae Ryung’s letter be given to Wang Won. Baek Ah says he can’t do anything else for his brother. He apologizes and leaves. Wang Won reads the letter than Chae Ryung gave to Hae Soo. “I know the end of coming soon. I am a person that couldn’t stop loving.” Wang Won remember moments with Chae Ryung. He falls to his knees.

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Yeon Hwa angrily demands that Wang So see their son on his birthday. Wang So isn’t interested. That’s too bad. I was hoping he’d find love with his child. It saddens me to think Wang So is rejecting his son, like his mother rejected him. Yeon Hwa begs him to trust his own son and not view him as competition. Wang So says he knows all about people that hide their true nature behind invisible masks. Wang So says he knows one day Yeon Hwa and their son will make a play for the throne one day. Yeon Hwa pulls the only weapon she has. Yeon Hwa asks if Wang So only thinks of Hae Soo. She comments that Hae Soo spoke of equality for all. Yeon Hwa accuses Wang So of rescinding slavery as a gift to Hae Soo. Wang So does not deny it. He coldly asks what knowing that does for her. Yeon Hwa spits out that she now knows why Hae Soo left Wang So. He says nothing.

Back at their spot, Wang So thinks of Hae Soo. A little girl runs into him just like Hae Soo once did. The little girl is the spitting image of Hae Soo. Wang So gently asks who she is. Wang Jung rushes up and pulls the girl to him. He looks decidedly nervous. Wang Jung never had a poker face (just like Hae Soo). Wang So asks why Wang Jung is at the palace. Wang Jung apologizes saying he came to honor Hae Soo one the anniversary of her death. He promises not to return. Wang So recalls Wang Jung’s request to marry. Wang So notices his daughter is older. He asks her age. Wang Jung tells him not to worry about him. He picks up the little girl. Wang So spies his hair ornament in the little girl’s hair. Yes! He commands Wang Jung to stop. The two brothers stare at each other, both knowing the truth. Wang So commands Wang Jung to leave the little girl. Wang Jung gets on his knees and states only death will keep him from protecting his charge. Wang So looks intrigued by that statement. Wang Jung spills the beans and says “She asked that she not live in the palace. It is scary and lonely. She did not want her to live here. That’s all Hae Soo worried about until she died.” Wang So studies his daughter and his brother. He tells Wang Jung he rescinds the exile order. He asks his brother to visit him from time to time. Awk, tears! With one last look at his daughter, Wang So walks away. Wang Jung hugs her tightly.

Eighth Prince Wang Wook (Kang Ha Neul) tells his mother that he doesn’t understand why she is insisting to take the children to the palace. Queen Hwangbo says it is the Crown Princes’ birthday and he needs playmates. She tells Wang Wook to pack up his children and explain things to his wife. Wang Wook says he doesn’t want his children at the palace. He believes when he dies the exile order won’t affect his children. Queen Hwangbo doesn’t agree saying his children need to be comfortable at the palace. She vows to make Wang Wook’s son Chi the King. Good grief! The family wrangling for the throne, and getting payback against Yeon Hwa, never ends. A caption that states Wang Wook’s son becomes King. Queen Hwangbo explains she tossed her dreams for Wang Wook aside in favor of Yeon Hwa. But she can’t stop scheming to have the King come from their family.


Baek Ah visits Wang Jung and finds a little girl. She’s not Hae Soo’s daughter, who is she? He asks if she’s Wang Jung’s daughter. She confirms this. He introduces himself as her uncle. He asks her name. She says it is Bok Soon. Baek Ah recalls asking Woh Hee her name. She told him it was Bok Soon. He spies Woh Hee’s ornament on the little girl’s dress. Wow! This is Woh Hee’s daughter! Nice touch! Stunned Baek Ah asks the little girl where she got the ornament. The little girl said she’s had it forever. Baek Ah recalls Woh Hee putting the ornament on the ground during their last night at the bath. Wang Wook appears. Is Wang Wook taking care of Baek Ah’s daughter?

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With a cough, Wang Wook chides Baek Ah for not marrying. They smile. Wang Wook says Wang So is freeing the slaves and returning their former status. The powerful families are not happy with this. Baek Ah comments that Wang Wook’s interest in the palace is still strong. Wang Wook says he’s curious what kind of King Wang So is becoming. He wonders if Wang So will be known as the most powerful King in history. Baek Ah reminds Wang Wook that Wang So gave up much to be King. Wang Wook coughs and agrees. Baek Ah is concerned for his brother. Wang Wook says lately he can’t stop thinking about certain people. Baek Ah asks if he misses Hae Soo. Wang Wook smiles a sad smile and says he doesn’t know. Wang Wook admits he made mistakes. He coughs. He remembers Lady Hae.

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Ji Mong greets Wang So as he prepares to leave the palace. Wow! Wang So reminds Ji Mong that he promised to be the King’s person. Ji Mong counters that he was the King’s person, but the King was Wang So’s father. Ji Mong comments that King Wanggun was his friend, brother and monarch. Ji Mong tells Wang So that Hae Soo was not from this world. Ji Mong encourages Wang So to think back and believes he’ll see the truth of his words. Ji Mong tells Wang So to forget Hae Soo. He jokes if Wang So longs for someone that isn’t there, he’ll be just like him. He bows and leaves. Ji Mong flashes back to happy memories with the princes. Wang So turns and sees the eclipse of the sun.

Memories of Hae Soo, Wang So, and her time travel appear.

Hae Soo wakes in the present day! She can’t believe she woke up crying again. Does she have a scar on her wrist?

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At the festival celebrating makeup from Wang So’s reign, Hae Soo tells her friend about the repetitive dream she has about a man with a scar on his face and a half mask. Her friend tells her it’s due to the coma she was in for a year after drowning. She wonders why she cries over this man. She spies Ji Mong but doesn’t know him. Cool! Ji Mong approaches her and she greets him. He stares at her. She looks expectantly at him. He looks at her name tag and asks her last name is Go. Hae Soo says her name is Go Ha Jin. Ji Mong asks if she knows that Go was Hae in the Goryeo era. She smiles and says she’s selling makeup from that era. She says it must be a coincidence. Ji Mong counters there are no coincidences. He states things return to their original place. Hae Soo doesn’t understand. Ji Mong comments on the rose smell. Hae Soo says Goryeo era cosmetics used rose oil. As she explains the serum with rose oil, she hears Baek Ah’s voice. Love it! Ji Mong asks if she’s okay. Hae Soo shrugs off her unease. She explains the BB cream. She flashes to see and hear Wang So declare he’ll never let her go! LOVE IT! She drops the BB cream. Ji Mong tells her she should rest. Her friend rushes to her side and urges her to go home. Hae Soo apologizes to Ji Mong and leaves. He watches her go.

Later Hae Soo visits an exhibit of Goryeo era paintings. She sees a painting of a ceremony and hears it in her head. She flashes back again. She looks at other paintings. When she looks at the one of rain ceremony she flashes to an image of Wang So. Loving this! She flashes to the red vision of Wang So. She flashes to the rain ceremony and the exact moment the painting captures. She realizes this wasn’t a dream. She looks at other paintings and flashes back to herself kneeling, the princes, the birthday party, being with Wang Wook in the snow, the paintings each jar a memory. She stares at the portrait of Wang So. She remembers many moments with Wang So and his declaration that she was his. She reads the description of Wang So’s reign. The emancipation of the slaves. That he was a good and wise King. She remembers thinking that Wang So would no longer be remembered as the bloody King. With tears in her eyes, she stares at the picture of Wang So looking at the palace. With tears down her face she apologizes for leaving him. She falls to her knees and sobs.

Back to the past as Wang So stares at the palace. He hears her sobs. Baek Ah approaches Wang So and tells him Wang Wook has died. Wang So closes his eyes. Baek Ah says he’ll be leaving the palace. He wishes Wang So well. He leaves.

Wang So opens his eyes and turns looking around him. With resignation, he says that life is fleeting. He recalls walking with Hae Soo and telling her his father’s last words were that life is fleeting, short and vain. He told Hae Soo that his father was wrong because they were together and happy. When Hae Soo says nothing Wang So says that look on her face makes him nervous that she’ll leave him one day and go far away. He asks what she fears, what she hides. Hae Soo replies she feels anxious every day in the palace. Every step make her feel like she’s on thin ice. Sometimes she can’t breathe. Wang So asks doesn’t their relationship help? She smiles and says if they’d met in another world and time, it would have been great. In that reality she wouldn’t be afraid. She could freely love him. Wang So remember all this and stands alone. He covers his face with his hand just like his mask used to. We see his scar. Wang So turns to the camera and thinks “If we are not from this world, I will find you. My Hae Soo”. Swoon!

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The closing scene is Wang So giving Hae Soo a piggy back ride. The joy on their faces is beautiful.

My Thoughts

The writer pulled it out in the bottom of the ninth inning. Fabulous ending! I know this show was about the fight for the throne. But what worked for me was Wang So’s love for Hae Soo. She took her sweet time falling for him, but she got there. Simply put, their happiness is what matters to me and what I’ll remember. I was disappointed how little time they had happy and together. That is unchanged. But this ending softens that ragged edge and gave me the hope that someday Wang So would find her in the future. They will fall in love again and be together. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

Nice touch to have Ji Mong in the future. That effectively tied up the loose end of his story.

Hae Soo (IU) dies without seeing Wang So again. Hae Soo didn’t know that Wang So watched her with Wang Jung. Hae Soo didn’t know that Wang So wasn’t rejecting her letters, he was rejecting Wang Jung’s letters. Hae Soo gave birth to a daughter before she died. Her death mattered. Her life mattered. She affected the princes’ lives.

I had my issues with this character. We all justified why Hae Soo did what she did. It was poor writing that made her motivation unclear and this character frustrating. IU’s acting skills weren’t always sufficient in the complex moments. She excelled at the happy playful early times of Hae Soo. When the things got complex, it was harder for her portray effectively.

I loved, loved, loved, that the writer ended the series with Hae Soo back in the future. I wondered the entire series if Hae Soo’s trip to the past was a one-way trip. What a pleasant surprise to find out it wasn’t. Bonus points that Hae Soo remembered her past times with the princes and her love for Wang So. Did I mention I KNOW they get together in the future?

King Wang So (Lee Joon Gi) lost the love of his life when she died. He said couldn’t take watching Hae Soo and Wang Jung happy together. I don’t really believe that Wang So could ever stop watching Hae Soo but the writer forced his ignorance to sharpen the pain of her death and his aloneness in the world.

It saddened me to see Wang So reject his son because he knew one day Yeon Hwa would use him as a weapon against him. It gladdened me to see Wang So meet his daughter and gracefully accept Hae Soo’s wishes that she not live at the palace. Instead he asked Wang Jung to bring her to the palace from time to time. Lovely!

Do I accept Wang So without recrimination? Yes, I do. Whether he was a wolf, or a wolf in sheep’s clothing, or a kind man trapped by rejection and abuse, or a heartless kind man, it doesn’t matter. He loved with abandon no matter what it cost him. Only when he put the throne before Hae Soo did he lose everything that mattered. Was the price too high? I think so. Wang So probably thought so too.

This was my first time watching Lee Joon Gi. This guy can act! He was sublime. He did his best to rise above and elevate the writing which was subpar at times. Lee Joon Gi made Wang So the most swoonable character I’ve had the pleasure to watch. He made this series shine for me. Is there a fan club? Sign me up!

Eight Prince Wang Wook (Kang Ha Neul) lived a quiet life in exile. He remembered his wife, Lady Hae at the end. That was surprising but fitting. I didn’t hate this character at the end. I was surprised but not surprised when Queen Hwangbo keep scheming to get her family on the throne.

Fourteenth Prince Wang Jung (Ji Soo) loved Hae Soo and stood by her to the end. Wang Jung was a good husband. He protected Hae Soo. He cared for her daughter. He made peace, of sorts, with Wang So.

Thirteenth Prince Baek Ah (Nam Joo Hyuk) found his daughter. Baek Ah had the joy of finding his daughter. I’ll admit the scene setup confused me. Whose house was his daughter living in? I was happy to see a permanent testament to Woh Hee and Baek Ah’s love exist. I loved this sweet, considerate, supportive man. After Wang So, he was my second favorite prince.

Ninth Prince Wang Won (Yoon Sun Woo) got a bowl of poison and a letter. I going to believe he drank the poison after he read the letter and sank to his knees.

How did I do on my wish list for the final episode?

Wang So. I asked the question, could Wang So be happy without Hae Soo? The answer was no, but he wasn’t miserable, yet he was alone. As I guessed, Wang So did not achieve romantic happiness with another as Hae Soo was the love of his life. My wish for Wang So was to find happiness in his children. While he rejected he son, much to my dismay, he was open to his daughter and Hae Soo’s wishes, much to my pleasure.

Hae Soo. My wish for Hae Soo was contentment with Wang Jung. She accepted his friendship but she longed for Wang So. I asked if she would die in the past. The answer was yes. I asked if Hae Soo if being sent from the future a one-way trip. Much to my delight it wasn’t. Did I mention I’m positive that Hae Soo and Wang So get together in the future?

Baek Ah. My wish for Baek Ah was to find another woman to love. That didn’t happen but he wasn’t miserable, yet he was alone.

Wang Jung. My wish for Wang Jung was to find contentment with Hae Soo. They had a brief, peaceful marriage. I was pleased that he found another woman to marry though we never saw her.

Yeon Hwa. My wish was that Yeon Hwa would bear Wang So a son. That happened. Knowing she was rejected by Wang So doesn’t bother me. Knowing her mother schemed to put Wang Wook’s son on the throne pleased me.

Wang Wook. My wish was that he lived in exile the rest of this life. He did but he wasn’t miserable. He remarried and had children. His son would eventually become King though he didn’t live to see it.

Wang Won. My wish was that he dies. I believe he drank the poison and granted my wish.

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Posted in Recaps, Scarlet Heart Ryeo
36 comments on “Scarlet Heart Ryeo Episode 20 (Final) Recap
  1. Jane Tilly says:

    Soo had mixed feelings about leaving So and the palace, but leaving ended up being the choice. I think So lamented pushing Soo away before she even left the palace.

    I am pleased Jung’s goal was to protect Soo, despite him being in love with her. Everything around Soo seemed to remind her of So. Getting the hairpin back from Jung was yet another reminder. Jung hammed it up for Gwangjong’s spy, making his relationship with Soo look like more than it was. Soo being pregnant was a HUGE bombshell! I suppose this the impetus for her urgency in leaving the palace—yep; I would not want my child to be in Queen Yoo 2.0’s crosshairs. The Chinese version the time traveler had a miscarriage before leaving the palace—this was an unexpected plot change which I enjoyed. Jung wanted to continue to protect Soo, by not letting Gwangjong know about the baby—he would yank Soo back to the palace quicker than you could blink an eye. How does the King have time to personally spy on Soo? Gwangjong heard and saw just enough to make mistaken assumptions about Soo and Jung. The baby daughter is sooo adorable!

    I found the flashback to Eun’s birthday party to be bittersweet; it was a happier time, but also a reminder of those who had already died. It is most unfortunate So did not read Soo’s letters, thinking they were letters from Jung. It was heartrending that So came to the realization Soo still loved him only after her death. I shed tears when Soo died and when Jung and So grieved and wept—you could tell Jung was also really in love with her.

    Delusional Wang Won truly thought he should be king! Soo had a lot of moxie last episode as she confronted Won about his complicity in Chae Ryung’s death. I ❤ Soo for sending Chae Ryung’s letter to Won; I think Won felt remorse for the first and last time in his life. Won finally got justice for his complicity in several treasonous acts!

    Last episode Yeon Hwa in the bath proclaiming her son will be the king of Goryeo was indeed major shades of Queen Yoo 2.0. Color me surprised when Gwangjong told Yeon Hwa to her face that he was anticipating her going after him to enthrone their son. Like mother, like daughter.

    Queen Hwangbo still has not given up the Game of Thrones-Goryeo. I can hardly believe how much the makeup artists made Wook age. I was confused with the scene where Baek Ah meets the little girl named Bok Soon. My initial reaction was this girl was the hidden love child of Baek Ah and Woo Hee—reared by Wook. But why would Wook raise Baek Ah’s child? I finally came to the conclusion this was Woo Hee reincarnated as Wook’s child—Woo Hee used the alias Bok Soon and the norigae was similar to Woo Hee’s, but not the same.

    I was so relieved So relented on Jung leaving Soo’s daughter to live in the palace and withdrew Jung's exile with the request to visit the palace. I am not liking So’s grumpy face—I was comforted to see the King soften his heart to comply with Soo’s wishes.

    Ji Mong leaving truly left Gwangjong alone. I find it interesting Ji Mong told Gwangjong that Soo was from another world. Another eclipse might make things full circle for Hae Soo to return to modern times.

    Ha Jin was in a coma for a year and then having a recurring dream of Hae Soo’s life in Goryeo? Her hair is like her Goryeo days, not like when she left. Ji Mong looked different in modern day with short hair, intact front teeth and glasses compared to his Goryeo days—and very different from the homeless man with broken teeth he had in episode 1. The Modern Ji Mong appeared to be guiding Ha Jin to remember her Goryeo days. We have to wait for the sequel to get Ji Mong’s story.

    When she was viewing the Goryeo exhibit, why would she have a memory flashback from the exorcism ceremony drawing—she did not attend that event. Ha Jin and I were both glad to see Gwangjong turned out to be a good king. I am forlorn about So being left alone. We have Gwangjong’s promise to find his Hae Soo even in another world—a perfect setup for a sequel.

    The wish list items were not fully achieved, but at least Won finally paid! I was glad to see the rest of them weren’t miserable. I was saddened that So seemingly rejected his son 😦 We will have to wait for the sequel for more satisfaction.

    I thought this ended more upbeat than the Chinese version and felt the ending was done nicely! 🙂 The flashback of So giving Soo a glorious piggyback ride was a nice touch to end the series on a happier note! ❤

    • kjtamuser says:

      “Soo being pregnant was a HUGE bombshell! I suppose this the impetus for her urgency in leaving the palace”
      * Agreed. It gave credence to her decision to leave without much discussion.

      “How does the King have time to personally spy on Soo? ”
      * Single minded almost obsessive love.

      “I shed tears when Soo died and when Jung and So grieved and wept—you could tell Jung was also really in love with her.”
      * You were not alone crying during that moment. I was impressed how authentic Ji Soo’s tears seemed and Nam Joo Hyuk’s subtle display of grasping that the Wang Jung character loved his wife.

      ” I finally came to the conclusion this was Woo Hee reincarnated as Wook’s child—Woo Hee used the alias Bok Soon and the norigae was similar to Woo Hee’s, but not the same”
      * Another murky moment provided by the writer.

      “I was comforted to see the King soften his heart to comply with Soo’s wishes”
      * Another superb subtle moment from Lee Joon Ki.

      “I find it interesting Ji Mong told Gwangjong that Soo was from another world. Another eclipse might make things full circle for Hae Soo to return to modern times.”
      * Ji Mong’s comment sparked Wang So’s thoughts. It fueled his declaration that he would find her, no matter where she was.

      “The Modern Ji Mong appeared to be guiding Ha Jin to remember her Goryeo days”
      * Concur. Ji Mong was subtle in his ways but a force in this story.

      “felt the ending was done nicely! The flashback of So giving Soo a glorious piggyback ride was a nice touch to end the series on a happier note!”
      * I was relieved that the final episode did not wallow in misery, gave us hope that our couple reunites, and closed on an upbeat scene.

  2. Kelli says:

    Whew, we finally made it. That was a really good episode to cap off the series.

    Do I think they should go for season 2? Hell yes. Do I think the writers originally intended to push for season 2? Yup. Million dollar question is will another season happen? Most likely not. So what we end with is an almost perfect finale. They hinted like crazy about a season 2, but I’m not sure they’d capture the same magic.

    Lee Joon Ki was a star in this series. I’m not sure who else I could have seen bring Wang So to life, make him lovable, swoonable, and complex.

    All the flashbacks in this episode made me cry over more simple times for them all. When the lady started singing her song, I cried. When Soo died, I cried some more. When So, Jung, and Baek Ah were in the same room with her ashes, I was a goner. Baek Ah stepping in to tell Jung to stop the bullshit, and let So leave with Soo’s ashes was great. It was a truth everyone knew.

    So and what he did for his daughter. That was another moment. The clarity Jung and So had in a few seconds was more than they probably had in a lifetime.

    I agree with Jane that I don’t think Bok Soon was Baek Ah/Woo Hee’s child. Something didn’t add up. She was at Wook’s house. The guards when Baek Ah entered showed that. Another plot hole the writers left open.

    I was singing ‘Hey hey hey goodbye’ when Won was given the poison. Good riddance dude.

    No sympathy at all for Wook, Yeon Hwa, or Queen Hwangbo. They made their beds, so they get to lie in it so to speak.

    While I did love the end scene of So giving Soo a piggyback ride, I would have felt more complete if they showed those two together in the future reunited. Think about if he called out her name in that gallery, gave her the possessive hug that we all love about him, and asked her why she died without getting his permission? One of his swooning kisses, and perfect ending.

    • kjtamuser says:

      “Do I think the writers originally intended to push for season 2? Yup. Million dollar question is will another season happen? Most likely not. So what we end with is an almost perfect finale. They hinted like crazy about a season 2, but I’m not sure they’d capture the same magic.”
      * I agree the door is open for a sequel. I’m not sure I’d want one. The final did the trick for me. My imagination can fill in what happens in the future for our couple.Of course, if a sequel is made, I’d watch!

      “Lee Joon Ki was a star in this series. I’m not sure who else I could have seen bring Wang So to life, make him lovable, swoonable, and complex.”
      * Agree, he was fabulous. Will we ever see another character so wildly romantic and swoonable?

      “All the flashbacks in this episode made me cry over more simple times for them all. ”
      * That was the essence of the flashbacks, simpler times when the first King carried the heavy load of the crown which let his children to enjoy life and each other.

      “So and what he did for his daughter. That was another moment. The clarity Jung and So had in a few seconds was more than they probably had in a lifetime.”
      * Spot on assessment Kelli.

      “I agree with Jane that I don’t think Bok Soon was Baek Ah/Woo Hee’s child. Something didn’t add up.”
      * I agree that it was confusing.

      “I was singing ‘Hey hey hey goodbye’ when Won was given the poison. Good riddance dude.”
      * Concur, I KNOW he drank that poison.

      “While I did love the end scene of So giving Soo a piggyback ride, I would have felt more complete if they showed those two together in the future reunited. Think about if he called out her name in that gallery, gave her the possessive hug that we all love about him, and asked her why she died without getting his permission? One of his swooning kisses, and perfect ending.”
      * What a lovely moment that would have been. I’m happy knowing they will be together again and we can each imagine how that will occur.

      • Jane Tilly says:

        I agree it would have been great to have our OTP couple with a spark of recognition meeting in the gallery. I think the writer refrained from that choice, in hopes of a sequel. While SHR’s ending was not happy, which is not uncommon for a saeguk, I thought it was hopeful of our OTP reuniting. The joyful piggyback ride was a reminder of our couples’ brief happiness. 👨‍❤‍💋‍👨. I think it exceeded my expectations, given the death of the female lead.

        The ending of the Chinese version had our OTP simultaneously in the gallery with her recognizing him; their only interaction being him asking her if she knew him, but he had no recognition and left the gallery by himself – it was not a satisfying ending.

        • kjtamuser says:

          Good to know how the Chinese version ended. I agree that would have not been satisfying. If he crosses time to see her AND it’s the final moment of the series, then you want recognition.

      • Kelli says:

        No I wasn’t a fan of how the Chinese version ended as well. I’m glad they ended on more of a positive note in this version.

      • Kelli says:

        It is called Scarlet Heart. It is worth seeing in my opinion.

  3. Surprised and happy to see Lee Joon Gi with a role in Resident Evil: The Final Chapter (as Jun-ki Lee) release date January 27th.

  4. Like Hae Soo left the palace in a conflicted state, I leave this drama with mixed feelings. I will take the ending knowing that it could have been worse but we avoided that and can get a fairly satisfactory close to the tale of moon lovers.
    That final scene was a pointer to a sequel whether they can pull it off, I do not know but I think that may be a bad idea. However Lee Joon Gi has some loyal fan-base who sit through a lot of rubbish for his sake, case in point try watching Joseon Gunman and Scholar Who walks the Night. He carried those entire productions by himself.I do pray that in 2017 he will find great writers,directors and an entire production team who do justice to his phenomenal acting skills.
    All that being said this made for some fun viewing on Monday and Tuesday and I will miss those lovely costumes and all the overload of pretty offered up by the cast. Hae Soo was pretty,Wook was pretty,Jung was pretty …..heck everyone was pretty even cockroach Won was pretty. My eyes have never beheld so much beauty in one place 🙂
    @kjtamuser it is always so much fun to read your recaps,thank for providing that sfe space where we can all discuss our Kdrama viewing. Thanks for sticking with the recaps to the end although I am sure there are days you wondered if it was worth it 🙂 but for our sake I am glad you pushed through.

    • kjtamuser says:

      “That final scene was a pointer to a sequel whether they can pull it off, I do not know but I think that may be a bad idea.”
      * I hope they don’t do a sequel. I’d watch if they did one, but I hope they don’t.

      “I do pray that in 2017 he will find great writers,directors and an entire production team who do justice to his phenomenal acting skills.”
      * I agree. When you stated he carried other dramas before, I believe it because he did the same here.

      “Hae Soo was pretty,Wook was pretty,Jung was pretty …..heck everyone was pretty even cockroach Won was pretty. My eyes have never beheld so much beauty in one place”
      * LOL! With all the close ups the actors must have wanted daily facials during the filming!

      “kjtamuser it is always so much fun to read your recaps,thank for providing that sfe space where we can all discuss our Kdrama viewing. Thanks for sticking with the recaps to the end although I am sure there are days you wondered if it was worth it🙂 but for our sake I am glad you pushed through.”
      * redbutterflys, episode 13 was my low point. I was tired of everyone using Wang So as a pinata and Hae Soo’s continued devotion to Wang Wook. I did take an emotional step back from the show after that. No way I could stop watching, I’m not built like that. This show was far from perfect but it had a wonderful emotional hook for me in the form of Wang So. I think my recaps are my therapy for watching dramas. It’s the comments and the dialog that I love. Knowing there are others that are passionate about the dramas I’m wrapped up with is wonderful. Thank you for taking the time to share your opinions. I loved the interaction.

      • You are so right about the facials no one would want such close shots without perfect skin 🙂

      • Review Leaver says:

        …..heck everyone was pretty even cockroach Won was pretty. My eyes have never beheld so much beauty in one place”
        * LOL! With all the close ups the actors must have wanted daily facials during the filming!

        I was laughing so hard at this imagining all that hot eye candy having a row of beds and getting facials together because their PD was crazy………..
        I swear the PD was checking to see if he could find flaws in their skin, and forgot he was filming a show. Episode 19 was so bad, that he didn’t even get the hair in some of the close ups- it was just forehead and face till neck.
        Either that or the man is having some serious visual issues and didn’t realize what hyperzoom views he was giving.

        However, our eye candy princes certainly stood up to the challenge. Even that “cockroach” Won. I loved that name for him. Suits him way better than assistant guy-liner.

        They can all definitely get sponsorship and deals for skin care lines now……….. swoon………

        Regarding appearances it seems perhaps that SHR has a few rules it follows:

        1.Ensure you skin is perfect every single day -even in your sick and dying scenes;
        for the whole world will watch you repeatedly in hyperzoom views……….

        2. If you are male and are leaving home for longer periods of time; ensure your mane grows out in a lion like manner, and come back looking more manly. ………. It helps attract a lot of female fans. If you can grow out sideburns it appears to facilitate this effect as well. It may help you advance in position as far as the role goes as well.

        3. Ensure you wear lot and lots of eye liner. (Once you do however, you cannot stop- it lead to bad bad things. )

        4. Always be clean shaven . Growing facial hair may lead to an untimely death (Eg. Taejo, Mu, Yo…………..
        However on this one- Only Ji Mong got away, but I am not sure he is completely human).

        • kjtamuser says:

          The director’s penchant for the closeup made getting screen shots that weren’t 100% facial a challenge.

          I like your list! The sideburns and long locks did improve Wang Jung (yes I’m a Ji Soo fan).

  5. Kay says:

    Glad to see a positive take on the last episode. I absolutely loved it and found it a fitting finale to a wonderful drama. It was definitely rough around the edges, but it did so much good, and I loved it overall.

    Wow, this was your first time seeing Lee Joon Gi. He’s my favorite actor so I’ve seen almost everything he’s been in. Scarlet Heart is definitely a fantastic way to showcase his immense talent. I would definitely recommend checking him out in The King and the Clown and Two Weeks. Scholar Who Walks the Night was also rough around the edges but Lee Joon Gi was wonderful in it too. I already can’t wait until his drama 🙂

    • kjtamuser says:

      “Glad to see a positive take on the last episode. I absolutely loved it and found it a fitting finale to a wonderful drama.”
      * Are we in the minority of liking the final episode?

      “I would definitely recommend checking him out in The King and the Clown and Two Weeks. Scholar Who Walks the Night”
      * I’ve gotten recommendations to check out King and Clown and it’s on my watch list. I’ll have to add the other two. Exactly when will we have time to see everything on our watch lists? I’ve got a mini break before I start recapping “The Legend of the Blue Sea” which I’m looking forward to.

      • You can always put Scholar Who walks the Night on the back burner but the King and the Clown,Two weeks & Arang and the Magistrate are a must watch. Arang and the Magistrate especially showcased the fact that he can also do comedy,he could deliver some amazing humour filled moments played with a straight face. In Two weeks he starts out as a despicable human being and you spend the first few episodes full of contempt for his character until you start rooting for his redemption,that in my book is superb acting range. I am not a crazy fan girl as such( I know it seems that way 🙂 but I absolutely love his acting and he just gets better with age. For example, how did that scene where he kept clutching Hae Soo’s funeral urn and weeping ” let’s go Soo-ya” make you feel? I teared up too and yet I was sure I would not really care if Hae Soo fell of a cliff or some other tragic demise but I felt a pang because his sadness and grief was so real.
        If Hollywood was a diverse place this guy should have an award by now,I do hope he can get to be a star beyond just China and Korea the world is missing some great talent.

      • Review Leaver says:

        I am looking forward to Legend of the Blue Sea as well!
        But I concur that Arang and 2 Weeks and King and Clown should be seen first if you have not.
        Then do Scholar and Josen Gunmen if you love Jung Ki enough that that fact alone would get you to watch. I love the man as an actor and he is a one man show in both of these truely, but even I couldn’t finish Scholar who walks in the night nor watch every episode of Josen Gunman and cheated by skipping forward.

      • Jane Tilly says:

        In my opinion “Time Between Dog and Wolf” and “Iljimae” are some of Lee Joon Ki’s best work. Those need to be on your short list.

        • kjtamuser says:

          So if I’ve got this right, Lee Joon Ki recommended series are:
          The King and the Clown, Arang and the Magistrate, Two Weeks, Time Between Dog and Wolf, Iljimae, and Scholar Who Walks the Night.
          Holy smokes, I’m behind the power curve with this actor!

      • Kay says:

        Hmm, I wouldn’t say we are in the minority. From what I’ve seen, more of the bloggers/recappers seemed to have a negative take on the last episode and the series as a whole. But I’ve seen a lot more positive stuff from commenters across the web.So I think more people did like it, but I’m definitely surprised by how much negativity I’ve read about the finale especially when I found it beautiful, tragic, and gripping. Definitely one of the better last episodes I’ve seen in a drama.

        Haha, reading the other comments and your newly formed Lee Joon Gi drama list, I would have to agree. You pretty much just need every drama of his on your list, lol. But he truly is a gem of an actor with a wide range of works. Like the others, I wouldn’t hesitate in recommending Iljimae, Time Between Dog and Wolf, Joseon Gunman, and Arrang and the Magistrate. If you don’t mind classic rom-coms, his older drama My Girl is fantastic too. He’s the second lead in that, but definitely makes an impression. And Lee Dong Wook was a great lead. So yeah, just start looking up anything Lee Joon Gi is in 🙂

        • kjtamuser says:

          This drama was far from perfect, so folks may have had enough of whatever was bugging them and looked at the series with a broad stroke less than positive opinion.

          I’m surprised I haven’t run across Lee Joon Gi before. Just the luck of the draw on what I’ve chosen to watch in the past. Several of the dramas mentioned (e.g. Arrang and the Magistrate) I’ve considered watching but didn’t for whatever reason. That will change.

  6. Review Leaver says:

    Wow. I loved the way they ended it.

    I was glad I didn’t comment on Hae Soo last episode. I had felt there was something missing in her raring to go from the palace. I would have personally been long gone before her, but she is someone who is loyal to the end despite her own torment. The pregnancy was a great surprise that awesomely explained her reason to get out. She would have been doomed like Lady Oh if she stayed. That reason trumps any weak excuses or strong arguments we have all been discussing and really revived the story line in this last moment.

    Wang So must have so regretted his refusal to see her at the end, and his ego in not opening letters. It was heart breaking. I felt sad for So; and Lee Jung Ki’s enacting after Soo died brought me to tears repeatedly, as did Jung’s and Baek Ah’s moment after So takes away her ashes.

    We never will know about Ji Mong I suppose. He seems to be helping Hae Soo’s memories come back from the past into her new future avatar. His mysterious insight to Hae Soo’s origins from another world to So, opened up his mind to discussions he had had with her and he is apparently coming to realize there was more to the woman he loved. His declaration to find her no matter what was a nice ending.

    Wang So is isolated. He regrets dearly his one greedy moment- when the throne trumped Hae Soo. Unfortunately it took her death for that reality to sink in. At least he appears to be changing the world to make it what Hae Soo envisioned to them. He is using his powers well.

    Yeon Hwa’s sacrifice of Wook for the throne and him has blown up in her face. Instead of reassure So, it only confirmed that she would do anything for the throne. She likely thought once Soo was gone and definitely when she died, that she would have it all and is coming to realize that she only has a son with a claim to the throne. I was sad for her son, but then I recalled that So lived through Queen Yoo and Yo. That is what baby princes grow to be when they have such mothers. No one knows this better than Wang So. There is no way I can fault him in light of that maternal history with Yeon Hwa. He appears to be well aware that he married his mother’s equivalent. I think that has finally gotten him over his mommy issues like nothing else could have.

    Wook…….I suppose I was impressed he finally realized how much he took for granted the woman who loved him unconditionally, and protected him with her name and her being. It was fitting he remembered Lady Hae in the end as the face he couldn’t stop seeing. I was glad it was not Hae Soo. Lady Hae kept him sane and kind and that was the attractive man Hae Soo met and loved. Hae Soo did not have that same effect on him as a man. She was not bad or evil, however sometime you dont have to be. Hae Soo’s effect on Wook destroyed him in a way, and I was glad that in the end he realizes this.

    Won- Yeah. Glad he died. I don’t think he even warranted a down on his knees regret scene.

    I also was very confused about Woo Hee’s ornament on Wook’s daughter. I assume they are hinting at reincarnation. Not sure what to make of that.

    Hae Soo’s daughter with Jung and Wang So sacrificing knowing her as a father for her safety and Hae Soo’s wishes brought me to tears again.

    This last final episode was a beautifully done ending. I cried so much, and yet felt happy at the end. While SHR was almost a one man show for Lee Jung Ki, it was not as much a one man show as his Scholar who walks the Night and Josen Gun man.
    While all the actors were amazing eye candy, I will not deny them their talent at bringing their characters to life, as well as the chemistry between them: whether it was Hae Soo and So’s love , or Wook and Hae Soo’s attraction, or the competitive enimity betweenSo and Wook or Yo, or Eun and Baek Ah’s brother ship with So ………………. it was amazing chemistry -well done 100%. It was the actors that made this show, and brought all of us in despite the gaps in story and plot by the writer, the choppy insensible scenes by its editor and ultra zoom views by their visually impaired PD that we had to deal with.

    It was a nice end– and left enough opening for a follow up if they can. Do I want a sequel? Yes. With a happy ending and not taking after the C version please.
    Could I live without one…….I suppose I could.

    By the way I believe Lee Jung Ki did tweet/?face book up a sequel request for SBS to sign up for. I saw it this morning and I’ll try to find the link and put it up here for those interested.

    • kjtamuser says:

      “The pregnancy was a great surprise that awesomely explained her reason to get out. She would have been doomed like Lady Oh if she stayed.”
      * Absolutely agree

      ” Lee Jung Ki’s enacting after Soo died brought me to tears repeatedly, as did Jung’s and Baek Ah’s moment after So takes away her ashes”
      * It great to see all the actors deliver effective scenes.

      “His declaration to find her no matter what was a nice ending.”
      * I needed one final swoon moment for this series.

      “He appears to be well aware that he married his mother’s equivalent. I think that has finally gotten him over his mommy issues like nothing else could have”
      * Marrying your mother has an ick factor. I was glad to see him not put with faith in Yeon Hwa. The irony that she cared for him but would never have any part of heart was fitting.

      “It was the actors that made this show, and brought all of us in despite the gaps in story and plot by the writer, the choppy insensible scenes by its editor and ultra zoom views by their visually impaired PD that we had to deal with.”
      * Well said and true!

    • “the choppy insensible scenes by its editor and ultra zoom views by their visually impaired PD that we had to deal with@”. I laughed so hard at the visually impaired PD comment. I sort of imagine the poor PD coming across this blog and specifically that comment and running to see an Ophthalmologist immediately just to confirm your opinion about their eyesight 😀

  7. Review Leaver says:

    https://www.change.org/p/sbs-make-scarlet-heart-ryeo-season-2-possible?recruiter=323818386&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=copylink

    Link for petition for sequel to SHR.
    If any one is interested. Just thought to let you all know.

  8. Tikkitumble says:

    Actually I thought that scene when Wook saw moments of Lady Hae was poignant. Because right before he remembered her, he said he’s been giving love all this time, made a lot of mistakes and then he suddenly thinks back to Lady Hae and how she must’ve seen him too. It’s like karma, in a roundabout tragic way.

    When Haesoo’s daughter ran up to So, in the background before hitting him, she cried out “appa-ji.” I don’t know if it was deliberate, but it felt like an indirect way of acknowledging her real father. Then she does the same thing with him that Haesoo did with him. I loved that scene when he couldn’t hold back from smiling in delight. It was bittersweet; he knows now who she is to him, but he forces himself to steer away to allow her to live a happy life and to obey Haesoo’s wishes. I just wished that maybe he gave a backward glance to them before he moved on. It seemed a little cold that right after realizing the truth and how he can’t raise her, he moves on and ignores it. I suppose there’s not much he could do but still…I just think the remembrance and the enlightenment about his own flesh and blood would provoke him to give a few more longing glances that he’s so good at.

    I definitely think Bok Soon is the reincarnation of Woohee. It didn’t make sense to me at first, cus they had such a big age gap & he was her uncle! But then I remembered this is ancient era, incest is a frequent thing and age gaps are jokes. There is no such thing.

    It was chilling and sad to watch Wang So’s end. He has the world but lost everything close to him. But I guess that was just the cost of power. Anyone in high positions, even now, will say that being a boss is lonely.

    I don’t think the drama will have a season 2. Season 1 is friggin expensive and they didn’t do well due to MDBC’s popularity plus you have to admit the disaster that was the editing and directing of this drama. I can’t imagine Lee Jun ki would want to film another drama about this again. Not to mention, the Chinese version of Season 2 of this show was a complete mess.

    • kjtamuser says:

      “Actually I thought that scene when Wook saw moments of Lady Hae was poignant.”
      * This scene showed that Wang Wook had been doing more with his life than gnashing his teeth that he wasn’t on the throne. He was a decent guy in the beginning. It was nice to see him reflective. Lady Hae’s unconditional love was a strong influence in his life and that brief moment acknowledged it.

      “I just think the remembrance and the enlightenment about his own flesh and blood would provoke him to give a few more longing glances that he’s so good at.”
      * You are right, that was a lovely scene for both Lee Joon Gi and Ji Soo did well too. I see your point about the backward longing glance, that would have added a bit more depth. I thought he had to gird his emotions and stride away.

      “Bok Soon is the reincarnation of Woohee”
      * You may be right. Since it gave Baek Ah comfort I’m good with whatever that scene meant.

      “It was chilling and sad to watch Wang So’s end. He has the world but lost everything close to him.”
      * Yes (love your wording ‘chilling and sad’) what a price he paid. That’s why his declaration to find Hae Soo was crucial to give the possibility that he’d find happiness again.

      “I don’t think the drama will have a season 2.”
      * I don’t know what the Chinese Season 2 was but seeing Wang So come to the future to find Hae Soo could be interesting. Queen In-hyun’s Man did a superb job of that premise.

  9. Mimi says:

    She’s Soo’s daughter with who? So or Jung?

    • kjtamuser says:

      Wang So. Hae Soo was pregnant before she left the palace to live with Wang Jung. Her pregnancy was a driving factor for her exit from the palace.

  10. meowbean says:

    a bit slow ‘cos I only just finished watching the series. I thought it was a bit vague – we know she’s Soo’s daughter with So, but wasn’t there a chance So could have thought it was Soo’s daughter with Jung since he had no clue about her pregnancy? but he would still have wanted the kid around since she’s all that’s left of Soo?

    • kjtamuser says:

      My take is both brothers know the little girl is Soo’s daughter with So. Per Jung’s statement “She asked that she not live in the palace. It is scary and lonely. She did not want her to live here. That’s all Hae Soo worried about until she died.” So decided to honor Soo’s wishes and let his daughter grow up with Jung as her father while asking Jung to visit so he could see his daughter grow.

      I hope you enjoyed this series!

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