Category Archives: Hong Gil Dong

Of Acting and Execution

If Sung Yuri’s performance in Hong Gil Dong is criticized for being over-acting, then my year long Taiwanese idol drama watching must’ve either successfully desensitized my recognition of anything exaggerated-enough-but-not-yet-ridiculous Or buffered up my tolerance for exaggeration. (After all, I lived through Romantic Princess, what else can’t I withstand now?)

The acting may be a little Over the Hedge (yeah, cute movie), but if the execution is just right, then the two can compensate for each other and make harmony. In the end, we let slide the laughter that’s a little too loud or the gesture that’s a little too big because it’s all about the enjoyment. Let the golden(fill in the blank) judges trouble their (balding) heads with the hardcore critique.

Thoughts on Hong Gil Dong

I find myself constantly going back to edit my episode 24 recap for the drama so I figured I might as well write a new entry and dump it all here before I move on.

I love the Hong Gil Dong that the Hong sisters have created before the screen. Aside from the thoughtful and quick witted Gil Dong that he is, this guy has a boyish charm about him that makes you smile each time he says, “it hurts”. Yet his stubbornness and oblivion to reality is frustrating, and his demise disheartening. If he were a tragic hero, his downfall is composed of not just his tragic flaw but Chang Whui’s strong character. Ironic to think that Gil Dong failed so many times to go to Qing Dynasty when he tried to, but refused to go when he is given the chance.

Chang Whui’s character development feels like it’s Just a plot device to bring about Gil Dong’s demise. He blossomed without producing a reasonable fruit. We see Chang Whui softens, falls in love, finds a purpose for his kingship, sacrifices himself to save the life of another, suffers through unrequited love, faces the unveiling of the truth, and becomes more determined but impatient at the same time. So what do these transformations lead to? All the character development and angst set him up for finally agreeing to let go of Enok and shedding a tear in his lonely palace for his fellow ex-comrades Gil Dong and Enok and Hwang Bin Dang. That’s IT? What an expensive plot device and waste of character development.

Hong Gil-Dong Episode 24 (last episode) Recap


Plain and simple, the entire episode revolves around the clashing ideas and war. War starts, neither side welcome this fight yet none will back down. Enok is being thrown between the two men to place her OUT of danger. She chooses, as always, to go to Gil Dong, despite all the constraints that have been effectively confining her in the last two or three episodes. At one point, Enok asks Gil Dong how far he wants to go. He provides no answer, instead the camera moves to the confrontation between Chang Whui’s men and Hwang Bin Dang where the same question was raised. Hwang Bin Dang answers that the world behind them is how far they will go. Until they change the world to the one they live in, they won’t stop. They totally forget that the ONLY reason there’s no landlord, no oppression, and no rich and poor in the dream world they live in is because they obtain all their life’s necessities from Oppressing the rich nobles In The Real World.

Continue reading Hong Gil-Dong Episode 24 (last episode) Recap