Thursday, September 6, 2012

DFR: Arang and the Magistrate ep 7

Welcome to this week's first DFR for Arang & the Magistrate (ATM).  Today I dish on episode 7.

Okay disclaimer first.  I apologize if this post rambles or makes no sense in parts.  If you remember AddiKts from my WWU {{those of you that read my WWU-no pressure!!  giggle}} I had a sick girl monstrosity home on Tuesday, worshiping the porcelain gods.  Well, she stayed home Wednesday & Thursday (today) too.  By Thursday it was just to recuperate from all that knee time.  However, by late Wednesday morning, I too had decided to begin my pilgrimage to the porcelain gods.  I am better today but still not quite recovered.  So if there are parts of this post that seemed to trail off into.....

Hoping you all had a wonderful week so far. ^.^  I can't wait to hear what everyone thought of this episode!!  For me I will admit there was a few parts that lagged.  And there were moments that I was hoping got better that didn't, but overall it was still, for me, a pretty good episode.  I have to say that they are phenomenal at pacing.  {{But Unnie you just said it was lagged?!?!}}  And you are right AddiKts, I did say that.  This isn't one of those moments I mentioned earlier. do I explain?  Yes, there were parts that I wished had been sped up or were shortened so I could get a little more meat.  However, I also realize that had the writer(s) tried to speed up the story telling then it might have given a discordant, jumpy, mixed up sensation to the viewers. {{Kind of like Panda & Hedgehog did in its most recent episodes, bad Panda!!}} So even though I would have liked for it to pick it up a bit here & there, I can recognize the importance of taking the time to make sure the viewer is on board.  Especially, when the story starts to gets twisty, like it does in this episode.  We are entering the beginning of the heart of a good KDrama.  The story has been set up, most of the characters introduced & their background stories are starting unfurl nicely.  Plot, setting, character development are set in motion, now it's time to delve into the depths of the good part of the story.

So, in this episode, Arang dies....again.

Which is why this episode is christened "The Nine Lives of Arang".
And now it's time to dive deep into episode 7.  Sounds exciting, right?  Of course if you are used to my writing style then you know it probably won't be all.  Seriously.  You were warned.

When last week's episode 6 ended, Eun Oh had just figured out that the Mystical Sticky notes were set up around, not just the wooden boards covering the Bone Tomb, but in the trees surrounding the area too.  And we discovered that each time one was removed, it tripped Creepy Mommy Dearest's silent magic alarm, as well the gods watching from above.   This is where we will pick back up the story AddiKts.

With each removal of the magical wards set up to help block the gods from seeing what Creepy Mommy Dearest & her little men have been up to, the glass globe in heaven that the gods have been watching cracks.  Eventually, Eun Oh puts 2 & 2 together & figures out that the Sticky Notes on the wooden cover are north, south, east & west & that the ones that have been tied in the trees are the points in between...N.E. S.E, N.W., S.W.
There is one last mystical tree note left.
And it is so not reachable.  Just then who comes up but the Three Stooges who decide this is what they were hoping for.  This is perfect.  All they have to do, as Eun Oh is climbing the tree, that dangles over the cliff side, is go up behind him softly & give him a quick bump.  No one will ever know the truth.  But who is gonna do it?  Which lucky stooge gets to push the magistrate off the cliff to his death?

Moe of course....
Only as you can see he never actually got close enough to follow through, so when Eun Oh fell it was entirely of his own doing.  Moe tries explaining it to the other 2 stooges who are so happy helping him pretend that it wasn't his fault.  He keeps telling them, "I didn't do it."  And they keep saying, "Exactly, we'll back you up & no one will ever be able to blame you."

While all of this is going on, the gods in heaven, you know Hades & Mr Beautiful...
Awww Mr Beautiful appreciates me uh...humanity.
They watch the glass globe break & then seem really happy that things are going to get busy but feel sympathy for Eun Oh, as he must now be "buried beneath the evil".  That sounds lovely right?  Guessin I am happy right now that I am not Eun Oh.  Then they send Gen Dead Dude down to earth.  Now that the seals have been broken it's time to round up the exposed ghosties & ghoulies roaming that area.

We head back down & Arang is looking for Eun Oh.  She arrives at the Bone Tomb & is startled to see Gen Dead Dude standing behind her.  At first she thinks he's following her but he ignores her & goes straight to the bone tomb.  I liked that she tells him, as if they are dating, "after this let's try not to meet each other".  Then she scrambles off looking for Eun Oh some more.

Of course she just happened to head in the right direction & stopped at the exact spot he went over the edge & then something just told her to crane her neck, hang over the ledge & then she'd find him.
Okay this part kind of bugged me, anybody else?  It just felt a little too forced/contrived.   The point is though that she finds him & screams for him all to no avail.  She runs back to the bone tomb & grabs the Do Not Cross rope & takes it back to him.  She does try to get General Dead Dude to help but he's all 'talk to the hand Arang, you're NOT dead to me anymore'.  Whatever.  What a stuck up grim reaper.  She ties the rope around the tree & then clambers down the cliff edge to rescue Eun Oh.  Only as usual when Arang is involved it doesn't go quite to plan.  And just as she is about to fall to HER death, Eun Oh's hand reaches out & grabs her arm & catches her.
He eventually pulls her up on his ledge safely.  All while bleeding profusely & in obvious pain.  You Da Man Eun Oh!

She freaks out when she sees how badly he is injured & starts shaking & slapping him to wake up.  Did I mention that she has no idea how to get him off the ledge safely?  Yeah she's got nothing & he is way too injured to try & climb back up.  At this point I had to say my modern me got in the way of the Saguek.  I would have run screaming into town {{technically I'd have tried my cell first but you know it's Joseon Era, no iPhones... that kind of thing}} & gotten help.  I thought, 'okay, so they are going to have to spend some time together, he's injured, bleeding, maybe a little skin ship in the form of nursing is coming up'.  Yeah this is the part of the show that bothered me.  Again as this is only my 2nd Sageuk maybe back then, seeing as she is a woman & he is a man, {{a really yummy looking man}}, that maybe she isn't allowed to help
him out of his clothes 
stop the bleeding & clean the wound etc...  But seeing as this drama isn't really based on reality too much, except the sticking to the Joseon Era rules of man/woman etiquette, couldn't they have bent those rules a little?!?  This IS episode 7 already.  Modern day dramas we get a kiss usually, or at the very least some hugging, by this point.

Okay maybe I should move on here.  Anyway, so while Eun Oh & she are spending some quality time trying to stay alive some other stuff happens too.  Dol Soe has arrived back at the Magistrate office & finds the Three Stooges all happy that they managed to "Bump" off Eun Oh.  Get it?  Bump off.  Cuz they pushed him?  Okay Moe didn't actually push him but still the other two idiots think he did.  Oh whatever.  If I have to explain it, it was obviously not funny.  I really don't feel very good guys.  Bear with me okay?  Dol Soe is concerned that Eun Oh is not back & then it starts to rain.  Which makes him panic & scream out a few Young Master!'s to the sky.  He tries to get the Three Stooges to go out searching, HA!  As if!  But they aren't budging.  Cos it's raining.

And here I flashed back to the scene in A Christmas Story where the kid's tongue gets stuck to the metal pole & then the bell rings signalling the start of school & everybody just leaves him in the snow & cold alone, w/ his tongue frozen to the metal pole, & he's begging, "Don't leave me?!?!"  And his friends just look at him, shrug their shoulders & say, "The bell rang!"  I picture Moe, Curly & Larry saying, "It's raining!", just like those boys, to Dol Soe.  Finally Dol Soe has had enough & so he goes out searching for "Young Master" himself.  Is rain in South Korea toxic?  Is that why no one goes out in the rain in K Dramas?  And why they always get so sick & feverish after being in the rain?!?  I don't think so.  What do I call this AddiKts?!?!  that's right, it's K Drama 101.

Anyway, while Dol Soe is searching, Arang has figured out they are right next to the entrance to a cave & drags Eun Oh in out of the rain just in time.  She gets him all settled & realizes that he's got a fever & there is nothing with which to start a fire.  I got all excited again.  She lays down next to him & puts him arm around him to help warm him up.  He asks her what she's doing & when she tells him her plan he basically tells her, "Uh yeah sorry to be the one to tell you this but um you don't give off any heat.  Your body is cold.  It will never warm me up."  Which is so insulting in so many ways.  Right? And totally ruins the opportunity for a great scene.

At this point she gets up & starts searching through the maze of cave looking for something she can set on fire.  And this is WHOLE cave scene is where it lagged the most for me.  First she drags & drags & drags him some more into the cave & now she searches & searches & searches.  Other than the fact that they were trying to make sure this show fit it's time slot, this part was superfluous & I could have done without it.  Anyway, she's searching & then finds the edge of a big drop in the cave & starts to come back.  


At this point she runs into an "herbalist"  who also got caught in the rain.  She takes him back to Eun Oh.  And we find out he's a big fat lying Ghoulie!  Not an herbalist.  A liver eating ghoul that is an amalgamation of different souls that are all twisted together & are evil.  We find this out after he goes all "Coocoo for Cocoa Puffs" on Arang.  He cackles in glee at the idea of eating not just one liver but 2.  Hers & Eun Oh's.  Then he turns on her & sniffs her & is delighted to be able to tell that her liver is as fresh as a newborn's liver.  But what do you expect when you are technically only a couple of days old?  She tries to fight back to no avail.  Just then Eun Oh smacks him on the back of his head w/ the walking stick he had brought with him.  I thought it funny when Eun Oh tells the ghoul he can eat Arang's but he isn't eating Eun Oh's liver.  {{later he explains to her, when asked why he said that, because you'll just come back to life!!}}  he's got a point sweetie.  LOL   But the ghoul is stronger & not injured & starts beating the crap out of Eun Oh & then he goes back to Arang &  just as he is about to reach in & pull out her liver he freezes & panics & asks her what is she?  Telling her she is not human.  He seems all gleeful over this too.  He was a big mess of crazy & he strikes out only to be stopped!  And it's General Dead Dude to the rescue & FTW!!

He faces off against the ghoul, pulls out his sword & slices him open.  When all the stuff inside of the ghoul starts to escape he turns his sword around & it doubles as his glow stick ghost sucker!  Talk about the importance of multi-tasking!
Just as Arang is trying to figure out what all this means Gen Dead Dude goes all silent treatment on her again & disappears.
Is it just me or does this remind you guys of what it looks like when the Death Eaters disappeared in Harry Potter, too?  I'm not saying General Dead Dude is a Death Eater!  Duh!  He doesn't have the crazy communicating tattoo!!  But if he did then she'd have to worry about He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named as well as Creepy Mommy Dearest.    What a cross over that would be!  Right?!?  I think she got off lucky!

So now it's just her & Eun Oh again but we don't get to see any of that, not yet.  First we have to follow General Dead Dude as he reports back to the gods about the ghoul he saved Arang from.   She {{CMD}} can create her own ghouls now too.  When did she become so powerful Hades wants to know.   And Mr Beautiful counters with "Her lifetime on earth was a lifetime of suffering.  So she must have had some practice."  Uh ya think sweetie?

Back in the cave, Arang has taken the stuff the ghoul had with him, to cook their livers, & made a fire to warm up Eun Oh.  Who is asleep now.  She lays down next to him & keeps talking to him.  She believes that ghosts & ghouls are two different things.  At least I think she wants to believe that.  She vows that she won't ever become a liver eating ghoul.  That she is going to avoid going to hell & not be a ghost or ghoul.  Then she lays down next to him & stares at his profile, like she did the night they first met.  Although I got to admit, it's a really nice profile.

The next morning she wakes up alone.  Eun Oh is better, still badly injured but apparently sleeping on a hard rock ground in a cave next to a piddly little fire & Arang helps one overcome shock, injury & exposure.  They venture out of the cave & find Dol Soe w/ a rope just waiting around for them.  Arang starts to climb up & Dol Soe snatches the rope away & says nope the Young Master must go first.  So up Eun Oh goes, the whole way with the rope sawing back & forth on a rock so that when it's finally Arang's turn it will break of course.  As she is climbing though Dol Soe snidely whispers under his breath that he hopes it breaks.  And then Eun Oh tells her if it does break, take a deep breath & think happy, it'll be over quickly, you understand?  She "aishes"  him & starts to climb & snap goes the rope.
And ultimately she falls to her death.....again.  {{Hence the nine lives thing but you already got that didn't you.  Sorry I'll be quiet.}}

While Dol Soe grabs him & Piggybacks him back to the Magistrate's house, we get to see Creepy Mommy Dearest interviewing Creepy Ju Wal.  She wants him to find the girl & befriend her & the Magistrate.  It would seem CMD has some plans & ulterior motives.  Because we also see the gods having a little pow-wow of their own regarding Arang.  Hades tells Mr Beautiful that he should have sent her to hell.  And is upset that they broke the Principle of the thing.  But Mr Beautiful points out that the Bone Tomb has been revealed & since he knows (Ju Wal) Arang's true identity it's only a matter of time before he goes to take her.   And it looks like they aren't wrong.  CMD wants Arang.  After CMD comforts Ju Wal explaining that no matter what he is her favorite & always will be, he leaves & we watch her go down into a creepy cave & stand in a creepy room in front of a creepy altar that has two urns? jugs? vases? spirit catchers?

 Honestly, I have no idea what these things are called...
Then we get to hear a little crazy talk.  I do like it when she goes all crazy talk.  She explains that with Arang she'll no longer need humans.  Which is good to her because she doesn't trust us.
Then out pops these two guys,  We don't get to know them or even see their faces because as soon as they pop out of the urns they disapparate {{My Harry Potter Lingo lessons paid off}} back into the urns again...
She REALLY doesn't like humans.  I have no idea who these guys are, what her plans are for Arang but I very much want to know.  Don't you?

Meanwhile we see Lord Choi has recovered from his sickness & is getting the report about who Eun Oh really is.  Okay remember that pin we stuck in episode 6 re: Geo Doel & why how he was sent to Gimhae?  Well, he was sent to find out about Eun Oh.  Now you know.  And he reports to Lord Choi that Eun Oh is indeed the son of Lord Kim BUT he's not just a son.  He's the son of a slave girl. Not even a concubine.  A slave.   And it gets even better his mother is the off-spring of a traitor!  He's basically a nobody.  Finding this out makes Lord Choi inordinately pleased & giggly.  And he claims that he's (Eun Oh) been acting a puppy but he's about to see a Tiger (Lord Choi) come out.

Back at the Magistrate's house Dol Soe arrives just after Ju Wal does, following CMD's orders to find & befriend Arang.  You can imagine the look of surprise on the Three Stooges faces when Dol Soe arrives carrying the supposed DEAD Eun Oh on his back asking for a doctor.
When Ju Wal asks where is Arang Dol Soe tells him she fell off the cliff.  He really only cares about Young Master.  Which kind of disappoints me in Dol Soe.  I get the whole jealousy thing, his master is giving his attention to the girl but um .... Dol Soe she's really pretty & you are... um... how do I put this delicately?   Not.  At all.  You are NOT pretty.  Sorry sweetie.  Besides, it's in the script.  So be nice to Arang.  She a lot!!  

Ju Wal jumps on his horse & rides away.  Meanwhile the doctor informs everyone that yes, there was a lot of blood loss, & he's injured seriously, but not deadly.  He'll live Yay!!  Oh wait.  The Stooges are not happy about this.  That's right they wanted him dead.

Where is Arang in all this?  Washed up on the beach.  Dead.  Of course.  But then they close up on her body & we get to watch as her hand, which you can see is in an incredibly unnatural position...
... pop back into place & even better hear the bones crunching too....I gagged a little right then as I still have a very sensitive stomach guys.  Seriously, made me sick to listen to the sound of her bones crunching.
Thankfully Ju Wal shows up & finds her & rescues her.
I get this feeling in this episode especially that he kind of hearts Arang & doesn't want to hurt her for Creepy Mommy Dearest.  And not to get ahead of myself but I get that vibe even stronger after watching the preview for today's episode.

We're almost finished guys, I promise, you won't have to suffer through this review much longer.
He picks her up ....because you know dying takes a lot out of a person.  Just ask Wesley & Buttercup from A Princess Bride he was mostly dead all day long & could barely rescue her from the evil, snively Prince Humperdink!  Sorry where was I?  Oh yes...

He sees her stumbling & finally just sweeps her up into his arms & carries her off to his horse...sigh, if only he weren't, you know, a murderer, in cahoots with Creepy Mommy Dearest!
And off they go.  And we see a brief glimpse of Eun Oh awaken w/ her name on his lips first thing.  So sigh worthy...right?

And that was the end of this episode.  And so ends the end of my review for this episode & you can all take a deep breath I  am going to finally stop typing & simply add my signature to the bottom.   See you tomorrow Addikts.


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