The Burned King’s Painting
Episode 8 of Lovers of the Red Sky begins with Cheon-Ki deciding to walk with Ha Ram instead of Grand Prince Yangmyeong. He watches them together longingly, hopeful that Cheon-Ki will come back to him later on.
Alone, Ha Ram speaks to Cheon-Ki and decides he can’t be the boy he used to be for her, given he’s now blind. Instead, he tells her to go on and live her own life. He feels like he’s not in control but Cheon-Ki simply tells him to share his true feelings with her for time to time, hopeful that he’ll pluck up the courage to find her again when he’s ready.
Meanwhile, King Seongjo writes out letters to his two sons, worried about how much time he has left. Coughing up blood and clutching his chest, he remains determined to make sure the painting is fixed before he abdicates his throne.
The attention this episode falls back on the King’s painting, as Mi-Soo learns about Cheon-Ki winning the contest and her bloodline. For her, this could cause serious issues so she sets her attention on getting to Ha Ram, leaving a mysterious note on his wall which dissolves into the wood. It’s dark magic of course, but quite what it does remains to be seen.
That evening, Grand Prince Yangmyung heads over to visit Cheon-Ki. He’s got the medicine for her father, and in exchange she’s drawn him a painting as a way of showing his appreciation – and apologises for leaving him to walk with Ha Ram.
Well, Yangmyung eventually leaves, deciding to pick up the painting in the morning. However, he’s well aware that Cheon-Ki is hiding her true feelings for Ha Ram and calls her out for it, admitting that she’s a bad liar.
Elsewhere, Ha Ram is invited over to see Mi-Soo. He knows exactly who she is but feigns ignorance as they sit together
Getting nowhere with their questions, Juhyang grabs his sword and holds it up to Ha Ram’s neck, telling him about the demon and its red eyes. After slashing him and causing his neck to ooze blood, he tells Ha Ram he’ll soon learn about it, telling the Scholar that he no longer owes 300 bags of rice. When he leaves, Ha Ram remains determined to try and find the demon.
Back at the palace, Yangmyung takes Ha Ram aside and asks about his relationship with Cheon-Ki. He tells the Prince that he does have feelings but Yangmyung is not so sure. After all, why would he let her walk alone in the rain?
Well, with Yangmyung determined to try and win over Cheon-Ki and Ha Ram stubborn in his need to keep Cheon-Ki for himself until he’s ready, this love triangle is well and truly underway.
The big day arrives and Cheon-Ki shows up to start painting. It’s the Queen Mother’s banquet and the painters are encouraged to get involved. While those at Gohwawon work on the paintings, Cheon-Ki is given an extra task, with plans to visit Gyeongwon Pavilion at 8pm that night. No one is to know she’s restoring the King’s portrait though, as Yangmyung learns that the King’s health is deteriorating every day.
Ha-Ram escorts Cheon-Ki to the pavilion that night, where Cheon-Ki learns what she’s doing from Expert Han. He brings up her Father’s past and how exquisite the painting he created was. When she’s shown the burnt painting where the demon escaped from, Cheon-Ki is haunted by horrible visions.
They’re only temporary though, as Han gives her a task to draw an outline of the painting first from a description that Yangmyung will read out. In fact, he’s going to be there with her every night now.
Cheon-Ki realizes she’s left something in the pavilion though and hurries over to find it. Ha-Ram joins but when he sees the burnt remnants of the King’s portrait, he starts to lose control, clutching his head as the demon stirs.
Given Mi-Soo was on the verge of summoning it forth anyway (explaining the significance of the sheet of paper earlier in the episode) it doesn’t take long before black smoke swirls and Ha-Ram looks to be possessed by the demon. Yangmyung heads out and see this too, shocked, as the episode comes to an agonizing end.
The Episode Review
Lovers of the Red Sky returns with a solid episode, one that turns the attention back to the King’s portrait and the demon stirring inside. The ending certainly hints that we’ve got another showdown with the demon coming up, and given it’s taking place inside the grand palace with numerous people around, it doesn’t look good.
This was perhaps inevitable given Mi-Soo and Juhyang’s meddling, but it’s something that helps to drum up more drama into this show.
With the fantasy elements now coming back into view, the ending leaves things on a knife-edge for next week’s double bill. The love triangle also helps to stir things up for our characters, although given Cheon-Ki is destined to be with Ha Ram there are perhaps not many surprises there!
Either way, this historical drama has been a compelling watch and all eyes now turn to next week!
|Expect A Full Season Write-Up When This Season Concludes!|