My Country: The New Age Episode 9 Recap
1st year of the King’s reign, 1392…
Seo Hwi (Yang Se Jong) enters the room where Lee Bang Won (Jang Hyuk) aka Prince Jeongan sits quietly at the table. Bang Won murmurs Seo Hwi actually came. Seo Hwi states he’s there to kill Bang Won. Seo Hwi shoots an arrow in Bang Won’s chest. Seo Hwi draws another arrow. Bang Won stares at him. Seo Hwi lets the second arrow fly. Tae Ryeon and other men enter the room. Tae Ryeon calls for a doctor. Nam Sun Ho (Woo Do Hwan) and sees the two arrows in Bang Won. Tae Ryeon slices Seo Hwi who falls to the ground. Sun Ho tries to go to Seo Hwi unable to believe that Seo Hwi shot Bang Won nor that Seo Hwi lies on the ground before him. Sun Ho is knocked to the ground and ordered NOT to share what he witnessed today or die. Sun Ho agrees.
Officer Park struggles to stand. Cheonga’s sickle lays next to him on the ground. Mun Bok and Jung Beom arrive. Officer Park asks where Seo Hwi is.
Sun Ho and Seo Hwi are thrown into a room tied up. Sun Ho doesn’t understand why Seo Hwi chose this path.
Really? Blackmail for Seo Yeon’s life ring a bell?
Nam Jeon (Sun Ho’s father) learns that Seo Hwi attacked Bang Won and that he is in custody to be interrogated. He’s told Sun Ho is captured too. The informant is killed.
Nam Jeon arrives at Bang Won’s house. He demands to see how Bang Won is doing. Tae Ryeon states nothing happened here tonight. Nam Jeon doesn’t believe him and order him to step aside. Tae Ryeon steps aside. Nam Jeon enters the room and see blood on the book and the floor. Then Nam Jeon sees Bang Won being attended to by the physician who reports Bang Won is struggling to leave. The physician leaves the room. Nam Jeon stares at his adversary and gloats. Bang Won opens his eyes. Nam Jeon grabs his throat and declares now the pledge paper is gone, no one else would dare oppose him. Nam Jeon enjoys the moment. He doesn’t choke Bang Won to death, leaving Bang Won gasping for breath. Nam Jeon states history will judge him harshly for killing Peoum and dying from wounds inflected by his own man. Nam Jeon leans close and promises he’ll control the crown prince and be the power behind the throne. He leaves Bang Won to consider his words.
Nam Jeon had the air of crazy!
Nam Jeon asks where the assassin is.
Seo Hwi and Seo Hwi rise to their knees. Nam Jeon enters and orders Sun Ho dragged out of the room. Nam Jeon tells Seo Hwi that he did well but he can’t let Seo Hwi implicate him. Nam Jeon draws a knife and cuts Seo Hwi’s bonds. He orders him to take his life.
OMG! Full Circle Moment!
Nam Jeon orders Seo Hwi to do what his father did and take his life to save his family.
Flashback to Seo Hwi’s father killing himself while the village watched.
Seo Hwi stares into Nam Jeon’s eyes. Seo Hwi asks if Nam Jeon gave his father the same choice. Nam Jeon says the truth won’t change this moment. Seo Hwi states Nam Jeon must take care of his sister. Nam Jeon says it depends on Seo Hwi’s choice. Seo Hwi considers then stabs himself. Nam Jeon watches as Seo Hwi galls to the ground. He leaves. Sun Ho sees Seo Hwi’s body on the ground. Nam Jeon tells his son to blame him and weep like his always does. Sun Ho tries to go to his friend. Nam Jeon strikes his son on the back of the head. Nam Jeon orders his men to kill Seo Hwi’s sister after he leaves for the palace tomorrow.
As he exits Nam Jeon tells Tae Ryeon he’ll tell the King that Bang Won died from wounds inflected by his own man. Tae Ryeon counters that Bang Won isn’t dead. Bang Won states he will be tomorrow.
What did we learn? Nam Jeon is odious and his word of honor is meaningless. Sun Ho still cares for his friend and was distraught that Seo Hwi “died”. But he put Seo Hwi on this path. Once again, Sun Ho caring doesn’t eliminate his actions and their consequences.
Tae Ryeon carries Seo Hwi to the room. He reveals Seo Hwi stabbed a bag. Bang Won enters the room. Seo Hwi and Bang Won stare at each other.
I knew it!
Flashback…moments leading up to this including when Bang Won finds Seo Hwi’s wall of evidence (Officer Park informed Seo Hwi of this), Seo Hwi admits that he’s under Nam Jeon’s orders. Bang Won points to the wall and states he’s been a fool for trusting Seo Hwi. The pledge letter is placed on the wall of evidence. Seo Hwi declares Nam Jeon destruction has always been his goal. Bang Won asks Seo Hwi how he can be trusted. Seo Hwi declares there is a witness to Nam Jeon’s treachery. The thug leader, Ganggae, tells Bang Won that Nam Jeon pledged to frame Bang Won’s father (when he was General Yi not the King). But self preservation had him kill his co-conspirators and side with General Yi. Ganggae vows he speaks the truth. Ganggae is killed for his treasonous acts. Seo Hwi stating the pledge paper is proof of Nam Jeon’s treachery in the past and he’s proof of SJ’s present treachery. Bang Won tells Seo Hwi he could die. Seo Hwi counters Bang Won could die.
Bang Won asks why the arrows pierced his armor. Seo Hwi replies that Nam Jeon had to know that Bang Won ingested the poison. Mun Bok, Jung Beom, and Officer Park arrive. Mun Bok is concerned about Seo Hwi’s wound. Bang Won exits the room.
Bang Won considers his encounter with Nam Jeon. He touches his throat and we see Nam Jeon’s handprint.
Seo Hwi tells Officer Park he’s not meant to die yet. Officer Park agrees that this mission is critical to Seo Hwi but he’s still injured and in pain. Seo Hwi admits not watching over his sister should he die, was the scary moment. Seo Hwi believes he knows what his father felt when he chose to kill himself to save his children from the stain of illegitimacy.
Seo Yeon (Seo Hwi’s sister) sits alone.
Sun Ho wakes and touches the back of his head where his father struck him. He remembers his father’s words and goes to find Seo Yeon.
Seo Yeon steps outside when Sun Ho tells the guards he must speak with her. They grant him 16 minutes. Seo Yeon asks why he’s there. Sun Ho can’t speak. Seo Yeon asks him to save her brother. She admits she remembers all. She swears to ask for nothing but saving Seo Hwi. She swears to take her life if it means saving Seo Hwi. When she accidentally cuts Sun Ho, she grasps the wound. Sun Ho says it is time for them to leave this house.
Heavy inference that Sun Ho can be reformed. Is it possible?
At Ihwaru’s Kisaeng house, Han Hee Jae (Kim Seol Hyun) reads that the Bang Won is still alive. She wonders if Seo Hwi and Bang Won are working together. She orders her man to watch Bang Won’s home. Hwa Wol reports that the Queen wants to see Hee Jae.
The Queen is pleased that her son Prince Uian will be formally acknowledged as the crown prince. She wants the power of Seo Seol. The Queen points out that Seo Seol is near death and if Hee Jae took over, she could weld the power. Hee Jae retorts that the power cannot be owned. The Queen reminds her that in politics sides must be chosen. Hee Jae recommends patience. The Queen declares that Nam Jeon will kill Bang Won. She vows to fight for her family. Hee Jae refuses to wield power for the Queen. She stands and tells the Queen if Bang Won doesn’t die, her death is guaranteed. Hee Jae wishes her well. The Queen declares Hee Jae can’t leave her and survive Hee Jae declares she will weld the power alone. She leaves.
Wow, super scene! With soft assurance, Hee Jae declared her power and opposing stance against the Queen. However, the Queen signed her death warrant when she sided with Nam Jeon.
Bang Won tells Seo Hwi that his mother kept the kingdom together while his father fought the wars to win the throne. Bang Won cannot forgive that Nam Jeon and the Queen hounded the King to reduce his mother’s position to nothing. Seo Hwi asks why Bang Won spared his life. Bang Won says Seo Hwi reminds him of someone, but won’t say who.
Seo Seol (head of Ihwaru’s Kisaeng house) asks Hee Jae how her meeting with the Queen went. Hee Jae declares she’ll take over as head of the house. Seo Seol and Hee Jae examine the secret room. Seo Seol counsels her to use the secrets wisely. Seo Seol asks if Hee Jae is going after Nam Jeon. Hee Jae declares that she’ll strip Nam Jeon of his supporters, then destroy him.
She has a plan!
Seo Seol announces to all that Hee Jae is the new head of the house. Her last order is for her Kisaeng to use the secrets she’s dispensed to destroy selected ministers. She warns should a trial to the house be established by someone, that person will die. She orders the secrets dispersed.
Ministers around the city are shocked to read the delivered secrets.
The ministers gather in haste. They point out that Nam Jeon’s actions 20 years ago, put all this in motion. They worry the King will kill them. They come to the conclusion that Nam Jeon must die.
I came to that conclusion within the first two episodes, these guys are slow.
Seo Hwi asks Mun Bok, Jung Beom, and Officer Park to rescue his sister should something happen to him. They chide his pessimistic thinking but agree.
Prince Uian (aka Lee Bang Seok) is readied for the ceremony to become the crown prince. The King is readied. Nam Jeon nods to his man as he leaves his house. Time to kill Seo Hwi’s sister. Sun Ho stares at his sword. Seo Hwi wraps her single remaining shoe from Seo Hwi. She hears fighting outside her door. She finds Sun Ho has killed two of Nam Jeon’s men. He offers his hand. She takes it.
But more of Nam Jeon’s men attack. Sun Ho does what he can, but he’s outnumbered. Seo Yeon offers to give herself up. Just then Mun Bok, Jung Beom and Officer Park arrive. They apologize for being late. Jung Beom tells Seo Yeon to close her eyes remarking his made and this won’t be pretty. They dispatch Nam Jeon’s men.
The music always lifts my spirits!
Officer Park tells Seo Yeon it is time to go. Jung Beom says Seo Hwi is waiting for her. That gets Sun Ho’s attention. That gets Seo Yeon’s attention. Tears in his eyes, Sun Ho asks if Seo Hwi is alive. Jung Beom confirms this. Seo Yeon asks what happened to her brother. Officer Park says Seo Hwi is fine. Sun Ho bids Seo Yeon adieu after asking Officer Park to take care of her. Tears in her eyes, Seo Yeon asks if Sun Ho will be okay. He smiles his assent. She orders him to stay safe. They leave. Sun Ho watches her walk away.
Heavy inference that Sun Ho can be reformed. Actions speak louder than words.
The King asks where Bang Won is. There is no answer from the ministers. The new crown prince receives a sword from the King with the admonishment to strike down those that would betray them. Bang Won arrive and asks why his brother should receive the sword. Nam Jeon cannot believe his eyes. Bang Won strides down the room wearing the clothing he was shot in. The King yells at him for making a scene. Bang Won says his father’s policy of no private armies put a target on his back. The King asks who did this. Bang Won states someone that plotted against him in the past tried to kill him too. Bang Won turns and looks at Nam Jeon and names him.
The King declares evidence is required. Bang Won states he has two pieces of evidence. Bang Won gives his father the pledge paper. That gets the King’s attention when he reads Nam Jeon’s name. Bang Won tells his father that the second piece of evidence was hired by Nam Jeon to kill him. He orders the person to enter. Seo Hwi strides down the room. Nam Jeon can’t believe his eyes. Seo Hwi kneels in front of the King. Upon request he identifies himself and where he and the King first met. Seo Hwi explains that Nam Jeon held his sister hostage to force him to do his bidding. Seo Hwi declares Nam Jeon ordered him to kill Bang Won. Seo Hwi says he went to Bang Won, told him the truth, and they worked to thwart Nam Jeon. The King tells Nam Jeon to refute the accusation.
Nam Jeon states the pledge paper is only part of the story. He claims to have pretended to work with those that wanted the King gone. He states his loyalty is steadfast. He states Bang Won and Seo Hwi are lying. The King asks the ministers opinions. A minister points out that Nam Jeon wanted Bang Won’s mother dead. The King declares that is treason and order him taken away for questioning.
That was completely satisfying.
Bang Won tells his father the policy of no private armies doesn’t remove the target from his family. Bang Won asks his father to revoke the policy. He stands in front of the crown prince and asks his father to revoke the policy. The ministers echo the request.
That was completely satisfying. Love Bang Won’s positioning to block the crown prince.
Hee Jae tells Seo Seol that Nam Jeon’s interrogation could end everything. Seo Seol counters that this is only the tip of the iceberg. She warns Hee Jae to watch what happens next.
Sun Ho goes to the palace.
Nam Jeon is tortured. The King asks who Nam Jeon worked with. Nam Jeon says he worked with Queen. The King is shocked. Nam Jeon laughs.
Seo Hwi visits Nam Jeon in jail. He asks what Nam Jeon achieved by trampling on his family. Nam Jeon warns that this isn’t over. Seo Hwi declares he wants Nam Jeon to feel mockery and misery for the remainder of his days. Nam Jeon says again, this isn’t over. Seo Hwi declares it is.
Oh sweet naïve Seo Hwi. Hasn’t your path taught you nothing is simple?
Bang Won tells Seo Hwi he considered his father a friend and mentor. Seo Hwi wishes Bang Won the best and leaves.
The wound on Seo Hwi’s chest isn’t healing cleanly. When he arrives at his home Hee Jae, KW, Mun Bok, Jung Beom and Officer Park are waiting. They open the door to his house and Seo Yeon is waiting inside.
Seo Yeon cries seeing his sister. Seo Yeon cries seeing her brother. She grouses that he can’t keep a clean house. Seo Yeon thanks him for staying the same. She apologizes for the trouble she caused. Seo Yeon holds her shoulders and apologizes for not rescuing her sooner. They hug and cry.
Goodness, this family finally has a moment of happiness. It is well deserved.
Around the camp fire, Seo Yeon asks how Seo Hwi survived. Mun Bok brags that Seo Hwi is like the wind. Officer Park clarifies that Seo Hwi fought to her to her. Mun Bok provides more graphic details about Seo Hwi refusing to release his bow with Hee Jae’s silk wrapped around it. Irked, at the risk, Hee Jae steps away.
Seo Hwi finds Hee Jae and she grouses he shouldn’t risk for the scrap of silk. Seo Hwi counters it is unique and meaningful. He takes her hand. He admits everything that happened in the past seems like a bad dream. He worries it isn’t over. Seo Hwi reminds him of sweet moments they’ve had. Seo Hwi jokes he wouldn’t want to wake from memories of her. They look into each other’s eyes. Hee Jae promises to wait for him. Seo Hwi promises not to keep her waiting long. He kisses her. She kisses him back.
They deserve that moment.
The Queen tells the King she ordered Bang Won’s assassination to protect Prince Uian. The King points out Bang Won is his son just like Prince Uian. The Queen points out that the King used Nam Jeon to neutralize Bang Won and she did the same. She declares he should toss her aside because Bang Won will kill her and Prince Uian. She declares he must drop the charges against Nam Jeon. The Queen states she’ll wait for his wise decision.
Nam Jeon waits.
The King considers Bang Won’s words. He learns Bang Won is building a private army.
The King visits Nam Jeon who bows. The King states he didn’t want a fight that causes him to lose the Queen and Prince Uian. Nam Jeon counters you can’t get everything you want. The King counters if Nam Jeon lives, his allies must die. The King considers Nam Jeon’s past service meritorious and exempt from law. He warns Nam Jeon not to interact with the Queen or Prince Uian. The King tells Nam Jeon to leave Bang Won alone. Nam Jeon asks who will handle Bang Won. The King declares Sun Ho will handle Bang Won. Like father, like son, the King declares. He chides Nam Jeon for keeping his actions a secret and therefore forcing the King to strip his power. Nam Jeon counter that revealing his actions would have earned him death. The King declares that Nam Jeon doesn’t understand him.
Sun Ho is told his father is alive and not killed due to the torture.
Dressing in his minister robes, Nam Jeon is informed of the secrets the ministers were sent. Nam Jeon knows these secrets were divulged by Seo Seol from Ihwaru’s Kisaeng house. He guesses she’s near death. Sun Ho arrives. Nam Jeon vows to kill Seo Hwi and Seo Yeon. Sun Ho declares he’ll stop his father. Nam Jeon gives orders to do so even if his son is killed. Nam Jeon looks at Sun Ho and yells that his own son killed his men for Seo Yeon. He orders Sun Ho to tell Seo Hwi he must flee. Sun Ho leaves.
He’s a cold-hearted snake!
Sun Ho rides to Seo Hwi.
Nam Jeon’s men ride to get Seo Hwi.
Seo Hwi’s wound still isn’t healing. He hides that fact from his friends. Sun Ho arrives and says his father was released and his men are coming for him. When arrow hits Sun Ho in the shoulder, Seo Hwi takes off, leaving his friends to fight Nam Jeon’s men.
Seo Hwi, Seo Yeon, Hee Jae, Sun Ho and Hee Jae’s security man dash through the woods but Nam Jeon’s men follow. Seo Hwi orders the girls to split from them. Seo Yeon doesn’t want to leave her brother, but has no choice as Hee Jae pulls her way.
Seo Hwi and Sun Ho face Nam Jeon’s men. Due to the wound Seo Hwi can’t shoot straight. Hand to hand combat ensues. When there is a lull, Sun Ho orders Seo Hwi to flee and fights alone. But Seo Hwi struggles to run.
Officer Park, Jung Beom and Mun Bok realize two of Nam Jeon’s men escaped.
Seo Hwi sees Seo Yeon, Hee Jae and Hee Jae’s security man waiting for him. Seo Hwi and Seo Yeon rush towards each other. But Nam Jeon’s man appears on horseback. He draws his sword on Seo Yeon. Seo Hwi shoots him with his arrow. Then the other appears and Seo Hwi draws his bow but it isn’t enough the kill the man. Nam Jeon’s man stands and runs his sword through Seo Yeon. She stares at Seo Hwi while she staggers from the blow. She falls to her knees. Seo Hwi screams his sister’s name.
Justice was denied. Writer Chae Seung Dae had Nam Jeon dead to rights with the pledge paper and Seo Hwi testifying the Nam Jeon hired him to kill Bang Won. But when Nam Jeon implicated the Queen for Bang Won’s murder, everything changed. The Queen boldly confirmed she ordered Bang Won’s death. She pointed out that Bang Won would stop at nothing to eliminate obstacles to the throne. While the King cares for Bang Won, his priority is himself and keeping the throne. He turned the tables on Nam Jeon and declared he’d use Sun Ho as his weapon against Bang Won. The King chose well. But will the assignment destroy any remaining humanity Sun Ho has?
Seo Hwi (Yang Se Jong) won big and lost big. Seo Hwi and Bang Won’s plan went off without a hitch. Nam Jeon was blinded sided when Bang Won appeared to accuse Nam Jeon of treason and Seo Hwi appeared to confirm Nam Jeon hired him. I must say watching Nam Jeon’s gaping mouth and utter surprise was satisfying. Seo Hwi was sure he had defeated Nam Jeon, the man that destroyed his family. Nam Jeon warned him that it wasn’t over. But Seo Hwi couldn’t believe the situation would change. He celebrated his sister’s homecoming with all his friends. But the King’s release of Nam Jeon trigged immediate retribution. Seo Hwi’s secret wound reduced his archery skills when he needed it the most. Seo Yeon was run through by a sword and fell to her knees in front of her stunned brother. If Seo Yeon dies, will it alter Seo Hwi? Let’s see…10 episodes…9.5 have been a nightmare for Seo Hwi and .5 have had positive moments. Team Evil has the advantage, every time because of the selfish nature our key power players.
Nam Sun Ho (Woo Do Hwan) showed signs of humanity. Frankly I don’t believe the Sun Ho will turn into a nice guy. His actions have consistently been self-serving first with brief flashes of caring about Seo Hwi or Seo Yeon. His tears seem like crocodile tears because he always returns to stabbing Seo Hwi in the back. Sun Ho showed more kindness than any other episode besides the first one. But he was removed from his father and the King. Those two men view Sun Ho as a pawn in their struggle to maintain power and position. In that regard, Sun Ho doesn’t stand a chance. Will returning to the King’s clutches drive any remaining humanity from Sun Ho?
Han Hee Jae (Kim Seol Hyun) released the secrets. Hee Jae took over for Seo Seol. I’m a fan of the wise Seo Seol. I was a bit surprised that Seo Seol didn’t tell Hee Jae that her actions could have ramifications. She told Hee Jae that Nam Jeon wasn’t defeated but that’s not the same as saying that Nam Jeon is a cobra that will come gunning for Hee Jae and anyone in his way. My problem with Hee Jae is her strategic skills are lacking compared to Seo Hwi and Sun Ho. She needs to up her game. She never seems to see the ripple effects of what she sets in motion. At least Seo Hwi and Hee Jae had another moment. Seo Hwi promised he wouldn’t stay away from Hee Jae. She vowed to wait if he had to go. They kissed. But if Seo Yeon dies, will this alter Seo Hwi’s soul and forever change our couple’s chances of happiness?
Lee Bang Won (Jang Hyuk) won the battle but the war is still undecided. The arrows were real, the poison was real, but the bags reduced the impact of the arrows and poison. Nam Jeon taunts and near strangulation of Bang Won was a riveting scene. Bang Won was defenseless. Nam Jeon could have killed him. But he didn’t. Why? Bang Won’s moment of triumph was short lived. The King couldn’t let his favorite lover (the Queen) be impacted by Nam Jeon’s assertion that the Queen ordered Bang Won’s death. Bang Won’s two moves – defeat Nam Jeon and reinstate the private armies – didn’t stick and had consequences. Nam Jeon was released and charges dropped. The King took Bang Won’s building of the private armies as proof his son would trample his power and take the throne. Sun Ho has the assignment to kill Bang Won. Is Bang Won in a worse position after all the machinations to prove Nam Jeon’s traitorous ways?
I rank this episode (on a scale from 1-10) as terrific. My rating chart is below: