The King: Eternal Monarch – Episode 12 Recap & Review

The End Of Time

Following yesterday’s shocking episode, The King: Eternal Monarch returns with another shocking episode that drops some serious bombshells and leaves the door wide open for the final set of episodes to come. With the future seemingly bleeding into the present and time starting to melt away like a Salvador Dali painting, this sci-fi Korean drama has done a wonderful job keeping things consistently exciting throughout.

We begin episode 12 of The King: Eternal Monarch with a bloodied Jeong-Hye told to get some sleep as a man and woman restrain her and prevent her from committing suicide.

Seung-A and Jo-Young talk together and the former realizes there may be a doppelganger given Eun-Sup kept calling her Na-Ri and acted a little shifty. Eun-Sup tries acting normally around her but secretly misses his Na-Ri. This is where we catch up with the scenes from the previous episode as Prime Minister Koo arrives in Korea and orders a drink. Jo-Young enters soon after and acts like Eun-Sup, buying a drink of his own and acting indifferent around his Prime Minister. Watching as Koo leaves, he uses Na-Ri’s car to race after her.

Back in Corea, Lee Gon receives a call confirming that the police are chasing Luna and she caused a big scene. As he starts looking through the camera footage, he reviews the CCTV and sees Tae-Eul struggling and realizes that they all think she’s Luna which is why the police were after her.

At the palace, Ok-Nam begins to realize what’s happening regarding the doppelgangers. As she leaves her room, she approaches Seon-Yeong and slaps her across the face, demanding to know if she’s the real one. Only, she takes the easy option and ingests poison as she bleeds from the mouth and collapses on the ground.

On the road, Jo-Young confronts Koo but as she feigns not knowing anything, a black car drives by and shoots him in the shoulder. Koo makes a swift exit though, allowing Shin-Jae to patch him up and learn more about his past and the exact time he became the Unbreakable Sword back at the Palace.

This catches us up to the events last episode as Tae-Eul sobs in Lee-Gon’s arms. The officers disperse as Tae-Eul passes out from exhaustion and Lee-Gon takes her to his chambers. Thanks to the efforts of Dr Hwang, a dehydrated Tae-Eul is going to recover soon. As she does, Lee-Gon makes a big impression by dressing in his navy gear and making food for Tae-Eul. After getting her clothes to wear afterwards, he stuffs a plum blossom necklace in her pocket.

Meanwhile in Korea, Luna eats fried chicken and tries to catch up with Tae-Eul’s life, looking over her pictures and reading the group messages. Just like Jo-Young did, Luna takes 21 days vacation from the station which immediately raises alarm bells for Shin-Jae given he’s seen this before with Eun-Sup.

Speaking of which, Tae-Eul and the King arrive at the hospital and greet Eun-Sup, holding some roll cake for him as requested. They then turn the conversation onto Na-Ri and he immediately perks up when he learns she doesn’t think Jo-Young is as handsome as him.

We then cut across to Lee Gon and Tae-Eul talking about the upcoming fight with Lee Lim and how his side of the flute may be hidden in the umbrella. As they walk together, Tae-Eul tells him she’s “glad he turned out great”. “We skipped a lot of things,” She goes on to say as he tells Tae-Eul about his past. As they do, Lee Gon greets the priest and tells him he wants a photo of them together. Just before the camera snaps their picture, time freezes completely leaving Tae-Eul smiling and Lee-Gon watching them. After weeping for a while, time finally unfreezes and they snap the photo.

As lightning crackles across the sky and thunder rumbles, we return to Lee Gon and Tae-Eul in their room together. He tells her he feels like he’s been burned and she sees the scar first-hand. Only, he’s not the only one to feel it. Everyone who’s jumped to the alternate world also faces that exact same excruciating pain – a side effect to the jumps. Only… Tae-Eul doesn’t feel the same thing. As they keep talking though, Lee-Gon takes a chance and kisses her passionately.

Meanwhile, Lee Lim bumps into Shin-Jae in the middle of the street before heading to his office and watching Luna on the security cameras taking a stash of notes from a safe. At dinner, Lee Lim sits with Jeong-Hye and after some initial awkwardness, she smacks him in the face with a vase and tries to leave. Only, he’s too quick and knocks her to the ground, calling her perfect bait.

Prime Minister Koo makes her move after learning some shocking news and enters the palace without permission. She heads up and confronts Lee Gon, who admits that everything in the news is correct. Only, as the lightning crackles he notices the scars across her chest and notices that she’s been jumping across to the other world.

As the episode closes out, Ok-Nam sits with Tae-Eul and asks her what happened during the war in June 1950, waiting for her response. Only…that war correlates to the Korean War that engulfed North and South Korea for years. That’s not something from Corean history so that almost certainly confirms she’s actually from the Republic Of Korea! What a twist!

Given the characters have been jumping freely between worlds, there’s no denying that The King: Eternal Monarch does have its confusing moments. I’ve had to rewind this one a few times over the weeks to be sure a character is the right version and even then, it’s not always clear. Even a bit of expository text in the bottom right hand corner to denote Korea or Corea between scenes would be helpful. Failing that, adding a slight hue change between worlds would definitely help distinguish this, especially given the time jumps we’re now dealing with too.

Thankfully the hedonistic blue/orange lights that appear during the Tae-Eul/Lee Gon segment partway through the episode at least show that they’re in a different time and Lee Gon’s crying during this scene is heartbreaking and incredibly well handled.

There’s a lot to digest in this one and hopefully we’ll get some answers surrounding just when Ok-Nam jumped across into Corea. It seems likely that she may well be the reason the flute is still kept in the Royal Palace too but for now, The King: Eternal Monarch bows out with another strong episode and lots of questions left ready to be answered in the coming weeks.


Published: 23 May 2020 at 20:16 pm on 

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16 thoughts on “The King: Eternal Monarch – Episode 12 Recap & Review”

  1. I’m still confused with the part on how lee gon knew that tae eul is in kingdom of corea even before tae eul called from the payphone?How did he knew tae eul is in danger and in corea?? He started to find tae eul out of knowhere after raiding eosu bookstore. That’s so confusing

  2. Lee Min Ho and Kim Go Eun gave justice to their roles of Lee Gon and Jung Tae Eul.
    I super love their chemistry. Some scenes filled me with giddiness and some scenes were just heatbreaking. They all acted beautifully. I got goosebumps when Lee Gon astride Maximus, told his men to protect the future queen of Corea. I was totally melting!!! The writer of this series is a genius. How can she thought of all the plots and twists!!?! This series is so unpredicatable that I am always excited during Fridays and Saturdays! I can’t wait for Friday again just to see this drama. It is number 1 in Netflix Philippines👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 Way to go TKEM💪🏻

  3. I hate to break this but Lee Gon saved the young Lee Gon, photos I saw somewhere confirmed it 😓

  4. I’ve watched this episode 4 times trying to get my head round each plot twist . What was they spraying in the wharehouse, why was lim fuming when he saw Lunar taking money( what was he expecting she’s a crimbo) Brilliant series

  5. I also thought LG commissioned the flower outfit for when he would propose to or marry Tae-Eul (when she sees it, the dressers are applying pins, so it’s not yet ready to be worn and hasn’t been worn yet). It’s the same outfit when LG from the future visited Tae-Eul and gave her flowers. I think LG will win the battle against LL, but Tae-Eul will sacrifice herself somehow so that LG wins (she said in an earlier episode that she puts the safety of citizens first). And that is why LG from the future visited Tae-Eul (he won the battle, reunited the flute, and is not only able to travel universes but through time and universes); he visited her wearing that outfit, because he wasn’t able to wear it to marry her because she died in his timeline.

  6. Is the kid in the warehouse is the same with the kid who played the bicycle when the ID’s fell to drain.

    Cant wait for the rest episodes.

  7. i got really emotional seeing Igon weeping when time stops while they are taking the photo together.
    This scene is so touching.

  8. There are 2 possible mistakes in Episodes 11 & Episodes 12.

    Possible Mistake from Episode 11 : just after the 58th minute, in the warehouse, Tae-Eul asks the little-boy “ You are in this world too ? “ And the boy replies. “There is only of me. I went to the other world”. Hence, we can conclude that Tae-Eul knows she is Kingdom of Corea. However, two minutes later, when Tae-Eul is escaping in the car she sees a signboard saying “Busan Palace” and asks “Am I in the Kingdom of Corea now ? “. That is a strange question to ask, since Tae-Eul knew two minutes ago that she was in Corea.

    Possible Mistake from Episode 12 : Head Court Lady Noh tells Tae-Eul she was born in 1932 and that she left her hometown when she was 17 years old. She also tells Rae-Eul that it is 67 years since she has heard news of her hometown. Adding the three numbers ( 1932 plus 14 plus 67), suggests the current timeline in Corea is 2016.

  9. My theory :
    1. It was Kang shin jae who saves little lee gon because shin jae ability of gun shooting is the best among tae yul. Shin jae holds tae yul ID from dead Luna. Luna stoles the half flute from lee lim then give it to shin jae?
    2. It will be happy ending from the flower outfit. The outfit is for a wedding, holding a flower?
    3. The writer of the poem book is tae yul? It might be tae yul diary? That’s why lee gon attracted to the book?

  10. Impressive review and recap. I love watching the show and the twists / it makes me think, analyze the events and dialogues in order for me to predict and or make inferences and make anticipate what is bound to happen in the next episodes. . That’s what I like about this drama – it’s not a straight flow story line. I love the actors , their emotions and dialogues resonate I can feel it strongly.

  11. Love it. Riveting, stunning acting, lots of suspense. The characters are endearing. Lee Min Ho, is on another level. World class! I must say I am so impressed by KDrama.

  12. Watching it has been a pleasure. Nevermind the negative reviews on the writing and some technicalities. Why do we have to think of those when all we want is to enjoy watching each episode. Not perfect but so are all dramas, films etc. We look forward to thurs and fri to watch it. A treat! To those giving negative reviews, you cannot speak and do not represent the rest of the world.

  13. The scene when the time froze for a moment and the the king crying was so heart wrenching you could feel his anguish over the fact that soon the time will freeze again good 24 hours and that he wouldn’t know if he will win the battle over his traitor uncle and if who would see her lady love once again this is over. Such an emotional scene. Lee Min Ho portrayed it perfectly.

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