Following yesterday’s slice of historical fiction, My Country returns for another dramatic episode, this time focusing on Hwi and his mission. With most of this 70 minute episode taken up by political power plays and another questionable inclusion of Hee-Jae as the lead female, My Country continues to pale in comparison to its early episodes.
We begin with Hwi and Hee-Jae staring one another down, reminiscing on old times. Turning his back so she can’t see him, he weeps and tells her he erased her from his mind. As Hwi leaves, Seol arrives and sees the devastation in Ihwaru first-hand. She decides to cover up what happened as a heartbroken Hee-Jae heads off and weeps after speaking to Hwa-Wol about what happened.
Meanwhile tensions stir in the throne room as Nam Jeol speaks of Ban-Wol’s weaknesses, expressing suspicion over the official growing closer to the King.
After confronting Sun-Ho over what happened with Hwi and how he’s changed, Madame Seol tells Hee-Jae that they need to find out who killed Jung Sa-Jeong. Afterward she gives her some advice on the hierarchy in the King’s chambers. As Bang-Won himself arrives, Hee-Jae is given a task – continue being Sun-Ho’s friend but report back her findings to him.
Meanwhile, Hwi continues to prepare for his mission. Midway through talking, Hee-Jae arrives and tells him he’s in danger and to stop whatever he’s doing. However, Hwi rejects her, prompting an emotional moment to ensue as he watches her leave. A montage begins showcasing what they had together in the past as the rift between them continues to grow.
As things begin to be set into motion, Sun-Ho and Hwi make their moves and attack their respective targets. Hwi attacks Bang-Won’s quarters and seizes his weapon stash. He tells Chi-Do and the others that he can’t allow them to follow any further as it will get them killed but they refuse to listen and stand by his side. He eventually caves and tells them what’s happening and how he needs to kill Bang-Won. They decide to stand by him and follow him in order to save Yeon.
After a hilarious moment involving love at first sight for Moon-Wok, Hwi and Chi-Do head off together to begin their mission. Meanwhile, chaos ensues at the throne room as familial rivalries flare up. This prompts the sixth-rank official to ask the King to disband all private armies, as a tense confrontation between him and Prince Jeongan ensues.
Hwi makes his move and introduces himself to Bang-Won while hunting a wolf. After some initial hostility, Cheonga grabs a sword as he and Hwi fight, intending to teach him a lesson in how to kneel. This ultimately leads to Hwi getting the upper-hand before seemingly proving himself to Bang-Won. This is, of course, all a play by Hwi to prove himself but it also results in Chi-Do getting hit with an arrow as he feigns being an assassin. Bang-Won refuses to believe this is all a coincidence and he bundles Hwi up and takes him away as a helpless Chi-Do watches on.
Back at his grounds, Bang-Won contronts Hwi over his impressive abilities and threatens his life. However, just as things look bleak for our protagonist, Sun-Ho shows up to save Hwi from his fate.
Aside from the dramatic finale with Bang-Won outsmarting Hwi, there really isn’t a whole lot else going on in this episode. It does feel like My Country has lost some of its initial frenetic, wide-sweeping energy that made the early episodes so endearing which is a bit of a shame too. Still, there’s plenty of scope for this to change going forward and the ending certainly leaves things wide open for where this may go next. For now though, My Country does well to keep things ticking along but compared to those early episodes, this one pales in comparison.