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[Drama 2013/2014] ♚ Empress Ki (기황후) ♚

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29 minutes ago, Jillia said:

@Fandomized Q

Have to say I already got confused because things were progressing so quickly I wondered how Seungnyang becomes the fiancé of Wang Yoo first (no spoiler because it's in the character chart). So I guess a lot of things are going to happen, huh? 




Not spoilers for upcoming episodes but mostly overall on their relationship 


Nyang/Wang Yoo are more in the lines of star crossed lovers. So their relationship most of the time is angst/longing driven 


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1 hour ago, Fandomized Q said:

She is the character I unexpectedly got invested a lot. I love/hate everytime she is on the screen. She's an absolute delight to watch, but her character is just pure evil.


Nyang/Wang Yoo do get some good ship development in future episodes. So I get why they were the popular ship. 


But overall I wasn't too invested on them. I feel like it was mostly because I'm biased :sweatingbullets: and Wang Yoo's character wasn't someone I got invested in

(I was far more invested in other minor characters than I was with him) 


Also Emperor/Nyang feeds into my ever loving  'strangers-friends-enemies-lovers' trope. 


It might be spoilery so I won't mention names but there was another ship of Nyang I was pretty invested in, that comes later on ---------> Edited: oh it was mentioned in previous replies. It's Taltal/Nyang


Yeah Danashiri's character was very well written. Sometimes I really wonder, if the king had looked at her differently and reciprocated her feelings for him, would she be different? She for me was an amazing character and since I am watching it again, I once again see myself falling for her beauty, cuteness but get angry at her evilness and be sometimes be impressed by her smartness she uses in the conspiracies. 


Nyang-Wang Yoo was lazily written initially, but yes we'll get some good development in future, and have a proper relationship. As @Jillia said, she'll be his fiancee first. 


As for me investing on anyone, I didn't really do it. I said before, she gets married to Toghon Temur, so I didn't really need to go for any shipping. Plus its not actually a spoiler, but Wang Yoo is actually a fictional character. 

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I've watched Empress Ki several times and each time I come away with a different perspective.  I initially wanted Wang Yoo and Nyang to be together --  forever. But as I re-watched I felt that Nyang's feelings for him were more about loyalty and worship of her leader.  She truly cared for him, but I think because of her youth and inexperience may have confused her feelings of admiration for his leadership for romantic love.  I do feel, however, think that Wang Yoo did love her in a romantic way. And is extremely protective of her.


And I could never buy into Nyang's relationship with Emperor 100%  because i had trouble forgiving him for his betrayal and for hurting her so deeply.  It takes a deep love to overcome that type pain, even if you can  understand his reasons for doing this. And time will tell if he truly loves her for who she is as it relates to her background -- or does he just need her.   It's complicated.


Tangquishi does, indeed, understand Nyang.  And had circumstances been different, they might have made a great couple.  I think of all the male characters he understands her best and admires her strength of character.  She is not a weak woman and though it gets on his nerves, he is also drawn to her bravery and strength.  it would be a nice twist of plot to see them together romantically!


I agree that Danashiri's character was well written and that the role was well acted.  I also wondered if she would have behaved differently if he had looked at her.  But in the end, I don't think so.  She is evil to the core and her jealousy is deep seated.  it takes trust to build a relationship and her insecurities would prevent that trust from happening.  Plus she is El Temur's daughter and unfortunately has inherited much of his undesirable behavior.



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I am not re-watching the drama but I came to this thread to feel the vibe. I remember that I liked Danashri as the antagonist. I wanted to mention her on the Sageuk poll but I did not watch the whole drama to see all she has done.


I remember that there was a controvercy about the real facts/ hystory and fiction. I looked to some pages back and I found my thoughts on the subject.


On 11/3/2013 at 10:27 PM, larus said:

I have been interested in this sageuk since I heard about the writers. I love the cast too. I watched the first two episodes and I am hooked. I hate the fact that I have to wait week by week for new episodes. 50 episodes don`t scare me. MBC promised a good show for its anniversary of sageuks. Tomorrow is Monday. Yey!

Now, about the recent topic. I am in the middle. I understand both sides. I always try to watch a historical drama without judging anyone. I agree that no one is a pure hero in real history. It were difficult times and It is human nature to fight for your own interest and for your own people/ family.   I think the debate about fictionalized history is not that bad. It is impossible to please everybody. Every country have its heroes and we tend to idolize them. With Korean people it is the same. So I understand that some citizens are concern about the events or characters portrayed in this drama. But I don`t think that means they hate the show. Discussions on rational level is good. In the same time, this is a show. A fictional drama not a documentary. Personally, I love history and I always read about the real history before watching a sageuk if the characters were real personalities. I am curious how the writers explain the events, and based on that how they imagine their own version of history.

The major events are there. From what I`ve seen so far, the writers respected the real history. Chungsuk abdicated the throne, His son, Chunghye (Wang Yoo) came back to Goryeo to assume the throne. We know that the next year, his father returned to the throne and Wang Yoo returned to Yuan. Wang Go claimed the throne for himself but his attempted failed.  When king Chungsuk died, Wang Go tried to take the throne again but was defeated by Chunghye. Empress Ki tried to pass the imperial throne to her son. She supported her brother when he wanted the Goryeo`s throne.  Those events are important and I don`t think they will change them. The hard life of Nyang, the Jackal band, her romance with Wang Yoo, etc. are fictional and those are in the story of this drama. We have to enjoy the ride. We didn`t live on those times. We don`t know what really happened so our mind could believe this story even if it is not the real one.

For example, I read about King Chunghye that he had a licentious lifestyle. It is said that he had a habit of abducting, raping and killing women. If he was chosen to be the hero of this story, of course that particular story was left out intentionally. But, that`s the interesting part for me, how they could explain that fact. It is plausible that Chunghye played the role of an incompetent Crown Prince, a worthless man who liked women and gambling. This was just a surviving scheme. I am not saying that was the real history but I can imagine a possibility. I learn to take the historical facts with a grain of salt. I have in mind the Jeong Do Jeon`s case. He helped Lee Seong Gye to found Joseon but later was vilified and ignored in historical books because of Lee Bang Won, who was in a conflict with him. Much later, historians rehabilitated him but that make be wonder what other stories were manipulated.

What I was trying to say in my long post, is that historical dramas are not the real history, and the production don`t claim that. We don`t learn history watching  dramas or movies on television but they can make us curious about history or maybe not. If one young people will open a history book it is a success. If not let`s enjoy a story about intelligent, passionate, courageous people no matter what are their name. . :)>-    


That was long. I see that I used to write long post in the past as well. :w00t:


Enjoy watching or re-watching the drama.

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Emperor and Nyang relationship was dysfunctional and to be fair,  they both were not innocent in the relationship. It's also possibly the most complicated relationship in the drama. However for me, I think that she genuinely loved both of them.


@larus That's insightful. Thank you!



I think drama took a lot of liberties in the way they wrote Wang Yoo, Nyang and Toghon. Especially Toghon given he isn't Korean. The contrast in his character and the other two is evident.

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@Nodame @faithwalker @Sleepy Owl @Fandomized Q @Jillia @joccu @chickfactor


The overwhelming majority voted for 4 episodes per week, meaning that you can already now comment on ep 9-12.


Starting next week's Wednesday, you can comment on episodes 13-16 !


I will update the watch schedule on the first page! Now we should be able to complete the drama by the end of November.



Oh, and everyone hates the background music it seems.... :joy:





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@chickfactor I am fascinated by Tal Tal (then again doesn't hurt I like the actor). Though my first time watching Empress Ki, I admit I watched alot of clips with Tal Tal back when it came out.


@larus Awww long posts, I tend to be loquacious myself (if people have not noticed yet) LOL. So if i have a short post it is rare but happens. I do agree, I don't watch dramas to learn history. You have to have fiction and history fused together to make an engaging story. You point out many points I agree with too. I just enjoy the ride and then if I am very INTERESTED in the actual history I read it. Then again, history is written by the WINNERS so it is already clouded and subjective. But good to get some info of that time period.


@joccu I am up to ep 11 and I LOVE that the daughter took up the father's role to lead the troops. Very smart and using the mask is on one hand smart and one the other hand as I learned at end of ep 11 not good (ooooh Tal Tal).


@Jillia I feel your pain in being behind. I see you in alot of the forums I am in too. So not enough time in the day for work, life , drama but we figure it out. LOL!


@Fandomized Q Hmm now up to ep 11, I feel that I agree that for the impression I feel (as first watch) I don't get the deep love from Seung Nyang to Wang Yoo. Loyalty and respect---she has in spades for him. Though initially not really, plus she is a loyal subject and even if she had a smidgeon of attraction, she doesn't dare admit it. There were flirtation but the full on love confession and saying to each other to live and survive (I wasn't feeling it though I love Wang Yoo and her together.) I did write that she does learn about Togon and her --their fears, worries, family is shared (more time to with him than with Wang Yoo. This time can build affection, bonds of brotherhood/friendship more so. Wang Yoo wanted to build that with SN but SN was reluctant. So she does care for both for sure and being betrayed by Togon/Emperor was horrible that led to her dad's death.  With Wang Yoo,he innoncently released his mom and her as a young prince, but they all got killed (she almost got killed) by Tongqishi. (I think it ironic that he is smitten by her now not knowing the vengeful dislike she has for him for killing her mom and wanting to kill her to carry out his duties.) If she did go with him to be his concubine I would have thought it messed up.Thank goodness it is not the case.



ep 9-11  (some thoughts)



-SN/Nyang going through the test to see if she can be trusted to kill Lady Park pregnant with the king's baby. Every time she sees the King (she initially wanted to kill him). Now she is slowly seeing him as a pawn. He is opening up to her thinking of her resemblance to SN he misses alot and is aware of the dislike/hate for breaking his promise to save his life/skin.
Their scenes together are cute and comedic. 
-Jangqishi is really mesmerized by SN/Nyang. But as we mentioned before he is cruel,not nice, obstinate and maybe being on the field too much he is attracted to Nyang. (She is gorgeous, worth more than many men -brave, good in combat, loyal). Funny how he thinks he can entice her successfully to be his concubine. If the King cannot get her and he got her the cushy palace pavilion job and she left it (it had less work and more pay) she just did not want to be near him.
-Jangqishi getting SN former bully to put the laurel extract so Lady Pak could lose the baby. He was so on point that SN would NOT willingly help his sister. So I guess SN was ready to die for not being successful? Despite her telling Lady Pak to repay her kindness for stopping her from killing Togon (in turn would have killed all of her people in Yuan). Still in the end Yeonhwa for her greed to be in a better position did it. SN quick on the uptake notices it that the laurel extract is working and she is helpless to do anything.
-Wang Yoo is sooooo smexy and wise/smart. Thanks to his REASON to live is SN. (I mean he was attracted then again the love affair really?) More realistic from him but their interactions is something of fondness and more . Attraction for sure and he is glad he is not GAY since finding out SN is a woman. A very attractive one at that too. His working to think to try to figure out the Turks and then sending his men to cut a deal. He knows he cannot trust General Banyan, Tal Tal, Wang Ko and evil Yeom Byung Soo (uggh still upset him betraying Seung Nyangn's dad) and having El Temur's son.
Enjoying that he has guys infilitrate the Turks and gain their trust. OMG that one minute later they could have lost their head. Love Bang Shin Woo, thank god he was leading not the other guy. Their eating the chicken and then BSW pretending not to eat so he could meet General Batolu. (I mean he saw that SN as Jackal and woman. How far fetched to have a smart woman leading the Turks? He shared knowing then noise tactic was NOT only to annoy the soldiers. HEHEHE Our Wang Yoo is worthy and astute leader. His perceptiveness after Tongqishi's brother tried to race him but his horse got spooked. As we know, Mongol live and breathe growing up on their horse. So to lose their footing/hold being on one is VERY STRANGE and weird indeed.
I knew something was up when seeing General Batolu wearing a mask. I def guessed it was more than one person but did not know it was the daughter assuming the role and I loved the idea. She is smart, bold and brave. She noticed Wang Yoo bravely fighting. (I wonder if she will develop a liking for him. ) Frankly I would not blame her.
-Dangshiri is a evil. Then again the apple doesn't fall far from the tree. If Togon/Emperor showed her some affection she could have been different. Then again when he mentioned looking at her was looking at her dad El Temur. (Ugggh your mortal enemy pulling the puppet strings on you holding your life in their hands) I would lose any interest too in that person (even if in a pretty female form.) Still I am glad the Empress Dowager has her infertile through inhaling the lovely perfume from the incense. (Very smart and devious I must say still.) 
Surprised the Empress Dowager is not being more careful with Lady Pak and keep her away from Queen Dangshiri The side plot where the Empress Dowager forced Lady Pak on him to lie with her as to take away the chance to have a child first. We all know having a Prince /baby is key. So as long as the Queen doesn't lie with Togon, there are no kids to be had. I like Eunuch Lee Won Jong, he likes Nyang. He knows a smart and resourceful person due to his experience. He would not have survived in the Palace so long if that was not the case.
-Togon/Emperor thanks to his missing SN and instincts definitely feels Nyang is SN.  He does get obsessed with SN and it was funny to see their scenes together. (He needs to learn how to read on the sly. But will he ever have someone teach him maybe when him and Nyang down the road are in a better situation. I know not yet but we know they will be together in this long drama.) He was right to suspect something is up to see Tangqishi talking with Nyang. It would raise my radar a notch too of suspicion as well. Then at the end of ep 11, Togon  got the  confirmation that SN was a woman. When with Wang Yoo coming to Yuan she was found out one day. But then they got separated (Togon cut his Eunuch off telling more). He is so torn and wishy washy and excited. First he says no I refuse to see her as she doesn't want to do anything with me. Next in less than a hot second he is running over looking for Nyang. (Gosh he is so hormonal. All that not sleeping with Dangshiri is going to go to his wanting to woo Nyang?) 
General Banyan and Tal Tal reluctantly respect Wang Yoo and his skills but use him mainly to take over the Silk Road so he can get back to Yuan. But Wang Yoo wants to live and avoid them taking it back. This deception/political play for survival by both is interesting. I am not an expert by any means. Right now , Tal Tal at end of Ep 11 gave a great idea that undermines Wang Yoo's attempts to join forces and let the Turks beat them. 
Evil Yeom Byung Soo ( Writing this name I have a sweet dongseng with the same name--so weird hard to use this association) always alert and tried to tell General Banyan and Tal Tal that Wang Yoo was fishy and not to be trusted.  But he got foiled. (Hehehe yesh.) 



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Just pop in to read comments and sharing...
Somehow I was not able to finish watching Empress Ki. I stop at Ep 43 because I was really torn between the torture the ups and downs moments of Wang Yoo and Nyang and Ta Hwan.
It was so torturing to continue watching as such I just stop at Ep 43 and struggling to continue on or not... 

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event alert! check out the new thread spotlight -- discover Lee Min Ho! please hit like and comment to encourage the group who put it together.



if you have suggestions for threads that might be interested in being featured, do reach out!

re: @partyon

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Ok took today off from work had to renew my drivers license. Omg what a nightmare but it’s done.

So I had time to watch ep 12 of Empress Ki.
Some thoughts :
-Togon bugging Nyang though he tried to not to. His poor Eunuch. He really feels hot bothered and not realizing it is attraction for Nyang is kind of funny. Not the hot bothered/annoyed for El Temur. Despite being with Lady Pak, he doesn’t or has experienced feelings emotionally for a woman. The fact SN was his first friend & she is attractive. He loves seeing her but pretends he dislikes it. Telling her to leave when his hormones were raging for her. Lol. Or getting upset over what maids ate. He forces his company on her and to eat the nice food thinking he can get in her good side. Being so obvious but Nyang realizes he knows the truth. He is jealous of her it seems like to him , pining for Wang Yoo (but I think he isn’t aware it is jealousy). He is annoyed that SN avoids him & though he understands cause he did betray SN. He is still upset.
-SN caught up realizing Lady Pak will miscarry having her friend tail Yeonhwa finding out she met Tangqisi. Lots of drama there being asked to start rumors that Lady Pak lied. The fight with Empress and Empress Dowager over control inner workings & the former wanting to oust the Empress Dowager. Togon seeing their power struggle is frustrated and makes his Empress aware of his lack of feeling more openly now. He is just tired.
-Wang Yoo plan to get to General Batalou is successful. He is shocked the General is a woman. (Will she like him?) She was too trusting. Her right hand person distrusted the new people correctly and died trying to defend /protect from them.General Banyan, Tal Tal & evil Yeom Byungsoo are captured. Tangqisi bro leaves them as they were defeated. Belatedly Tal Tal figures out their plan attack was to horses with the noises not the people. In the end of the day, Wang Yoo wants SN and to see her. She wants to see him but I don’t feel the romantic urgency vibes from her as much as from WY.
- El Temur stepping in using puppet Togon signing order to re- examine Lady Pak caught up in the fake pregnancy rumors started by the Queen. Since she had the miscarriage they (Queen dowager and Lady Pak) are all in trouble. Togon leaves in a huff disliking being a pawn/puppet. To the point he said to SN he wants to die and wished he died in the island there.
Preview shows that Tangqisi giving up on trying to get SN perhaps?
Does the Empress Dowager get dethroned?
Togon is making a big fuss about SN being a woman.
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First of all, congratulations to @Nodame for the renewal of your driver's license :kiss_wink:

Second of all, @Fangirl22 Welcome to the re-watch party!


We are allowed to comment on ep 1-12 until Tuesday. Starting from Wednesday we are allowed to comment on ep 1-16.


Then to my comments regarding ep 9-12....


I am feeling actually quite sorry for the emperor. In these episodes we could see what a puppet he was. He was forced to sleep and impregnate a concubine, forced to sleep with Danashiri, bullied by El Temür, pressured by the Queen Dowager, etc. Him being illiterate and not able to fight is really not helping his case.

I couldn't help laughing though when they actually carried Concubine Lady Park to the emperor like a roll of sausage.... :joy:




Men have feelings too, and I don't blame him for being so emotional and thinking back to the time with SeungNyang. He's searching for someone who can look out for him and protect him. He's feeling very much fearful, lonely and powerless. When he finally comes to realize that Nyang is really SeungNyang, we see the first feelings of jealousy come creeping in when she pines for someone else. We can see already an inkling that the emperor might be having some emotional issues and that he's suffering from low self-esteem.
Him not having ever been loved, hasn't taught him how to love himself either, unfortunately.
The problem is that he's feeling already now quite dependent on Nyang, when he should be practicing to become dependent on himself. This will turn messy I tell you....


The emperor's words:

"He <SeungNyang> hated me I suppose, but he was my only friend."

That really boils down to what his situation is like. :cry:


On a side note, I do love to see oppa take baths :heart4:





Danashiri is really quite horrible. She slapped Nyang, schemed with only ill intent in mind, poisoned Lady Park and now wants her executed too. She's hiding behind her father who is equally horrible, and her evil brother Tangqishi helps her on the way.... Running to her father just to get her way. :spitswater:
I just want to vomit every time she appears on the screen. Sorry @Sleepy Owl dongsaeng, but her physical beauty is overpowered by her awful demeanor.


I really like the actress Yoo In Young and I was pleasantly surprised to see her play Batolu ! What a fierce general she is! Otherwise the strategizing and fighting scenes with the Turks are ok. I'm not so invested in the scenes honestly. I am going to let it slip that the Turks look nothing like Turks, and that they all speak Korean too. :joy:

Also, with that hair, what hair products would she have been using back in the day to keep it so fluffy? Just sayin' :joy:



Wang Yoo is pining away after his SeungNyang and Nyang is missing her Wang Yoo. I've said it before, but I'll say it again:

I am not feeling the romance and have no idea how they even ended up falling in love....

Writer, please do a better job next time. :joy: Also, I feel like the Joo Jin Mo and Ha Ji Won have no chemistry unlike Ha Ji Won and Ji Chang Wook.


I feel like Nyang has lost some of her spark. She used to be so fierce and now she's being portrayed as quite a weakling. I want to see her spunk back again!


This was funny too:



The slippery pulse though.....



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FYI - The Empress Dowager isn't his mother. She is his paternal aunt. Before his father was the emperor, his younger brother was the emperor and the Empress Budashiri was the wife of the younger brother.




It's super confusing, but it ends up being somewhat important later that he is not her son.


(I know there's a set of subtitles out there where she keeps calling him her son, so that must be why people think that.)


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It's been more than 6 years since the last time I watched Empress Ki. Time passed so quickly. JCW said he wanted to do a historical drama because it's been a long time, and he would like to be King again too. 

Empress Ki is a good drama, but the last 13 episodes were kinda painful to watch. The scriptwriters tortured The Emperor and also the Empress too much. :sleepy:


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23 minutes ago, Tuvi Girl said:

It's been more than 6 years since the last time I watched Empress Ki. Time passed so quickly. JCW said he wanted to do a historical drama because it's been a long time, and he would like to be King again too. 

Empress Ki is a good drama, but the last 13 episodes were kinda painful to watch. The scriptwriters tortured The Emperor and also the Empress too much. :sleepy:



Wanna join the re-watch party? :glasses:


I hope JCW would do a new historical drama role. It would be great to see his acting talents in something else than romantic comedies, especially since he clearly has great talent in acting.


I actually found an interesting Ji Chang Wook interview regarding Empress Ki. It's actually quite eye-opening to realize how much effort he had to put into his role due to the quick and heavy mood swings of his character:


"Ta Hwan was a child who had never been loved and experienced friendship during his exile, and from friendship, he got to know about love. He tried many ways to obtain that love, but did not know that that was a wrong kind of love.  I was very troubled over how I should portray such a dramatic transformation."


"I had to shift between laughter, crying, fear and craziness in every episode. It was difficult to maintain a balance.
It is not easy to gauge whether a sudden change in emotions should be impactful, or whether it should be introduced then built up slowly.
If the script for the next episode isn’t out yet, I have to decide by myself what kind of emotions I should end the episode with, since I do not know how the plot is going to develop later.  There were instances where I had to film two versions of the last scene of an episode."


Full article:




It is pretty amazing to think that he was only 26 years of age at the time filming took place. His acting range is impressive even when you compare to the more senior actors in the drama. He apparently has a natural talent for acting. :kiss_wink:

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  • partyon changed the title to [Drama 2013/2014] ♚ Empress Ki (기황후) ♚

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