This past weeks I spent watching this drama alone. Imagine you can finish 51 episodes in two weeks. Yes, Empress Ki is that worth to watch. I was hooked by the drama since the first episode, it was tremendous. I always love Ha Jiwon, but this one is exceptional. A historical drama with a strong lead woman character whom seek for justice is not to be missed. Although in real history, I learned that Ki was a ruthless Empress. She ruled with iron fist and poorly affected both Yuan and Goryeo due to her corrupt policies. The drama did a little bit justice to reveal her real character by stating that she finally tried to invade Goryeo, her own origin, but failed, and along with disperse rebellions on her land, had led to the fall of the Yuan Dynasty.
Unlike other drama that present us with super kind-hearted heroine, Ki was complicated. She had both good and evil side. She could have empathy for those whom unfortunate but she also would not think twice to take the life of her enemies. Ki had all the qualities of how women should conduct their lives nowadays by using brain without neglecting what is in one’s heart. Perseverance, patience, devotion, and courage. Basically all the traits that you must have to strive and get what you want, but not in a way that you must kill people for that.
Starting off as tribute from Goryeo, she managed to escape and has to disguise herself as a guy. In the later development of the story, series of events and tragedies had set her turning point as she was willing to seek revenge for injustice that she and her kind had to experience. This had been her ultimate goal ever since that directed her to eliminate her enemies.
To begin with, I love how the story did not solely revolve around the love triangle between Ki, the emperor and the king of Goryeo, but focus on the politics and Ki’s witty actions and schemes in order to reach her goal and protect the people she loved. That is of the main reasons why I love historical drama, you get to learn the history and lessons from it, the good and the bad, not just merely for entertainment —another reason is their costumes, they have the best costumes for historical drama so far.
Of all the admirable traits Ki had, the most noticeable one was loyalty. Although she seemed to change hers midway, but if you look at the bigger picture, I believe she did not. Loyalty in politics is rare to find and the true form of it is not said, but done. Ki had been mistaken as hungry for power for she had all the Emperors favor, support from the King of Goryeo, and many more , but all she did was to keep the Emperors authority intact. By being loyal to the Emperor, she managed to gain power, create a strong allies, eliminate her enemies and finally led her way to the throne.
The other important thing that has to be considered is knowing your own limit, but don’t stop there. At this point, you will always need someone else, not necessarily to rely on, but to discuss and have argument with. She knew she was not a scholar, she knew nothing about politics and government let alone rule one, but she was willing to learn. Thankfully she got a perfect teacher for it. After all, two heads are better than one. She knew when and what to ask for an advice. She knew better to keep the people she could trust around.
In the end, there are many things you can learn from one historical drama. As people said, history repeats itself, one civilization was replaced by another for so many reasons. Hence, we must not forget about the past. We can learn the positive side of it and leave out the bad part.
The Great Viceroy Tal Tal
If I were to name the second best character from the drama, I would say Tal Tal. Wang Yo was equally interesting but I kind of hate the way he looked, so gloomy and miserable. He was strong and intelligent, and all but he’s just too miserable. Beside Tal Tal beautiful look and calm personality, his intellectual feature is second to none. Although at one point he made mistake, but let us not taking it into account since the problem was solved before everyone knew he was behind all that. His loyalty toward his uncle was also admirable, but he knew where to put it better.
He was a perfect pairing for the main lead and I’m glad that the script kept their relationship as a teacher and a student since it will kill off his character once the writer start to romanticize them. Although clearly in some scenes, Tal Tal had a significant concern about Ki’s well-being, we clearly don’t need more heart breaking one-sided love, aren’t we? Until the end, he remained as her loyal confidant, and that perfectly served him well.