Jung Tae Woo impresses as despotic ruler, Yeonsangun

I am currently two episodes away from completing “King and I” drama. So the following is the news and thoughts after an engaging Episode 61.

In the episode shown on 25th March, Jung Tae Woo’s portrayal of despotic ruler, Yeonsangun has gotten viewers salivating over his “godly” acting ability.

Jung Tae Woo plays Yeonsangun and is widely known as a despotic ruler in Chosun history. His mother, Queen Yoon was exiled and later poisoned to death after a series of plots from King Seongjong’s mother, his concubines and the court against her. Besides witnessing her mother’s fall, Yeonsangun also witnessed how his father was forced into a corner by the court numerous times despite being the king. These two factors largely contributed to a dark childhood for Yeonsangun and would have a bearing on his future.

After Yeonsangun became king, he abolished all laws and ruled by himself. All who opposed him were punished, exiled or put to death. Officials who participated in his mother’s death was put to death, including his grandmother.


In Episode 61, Yeonsangun (Jung Tae Woo) learned from the evil eunuch, Kim Ja Won that his father concubines, Lady Uhm and Lady Jung was heavily involved in causing his mother’s death. He went ballistic and plotted to get Lady Jung to drink poison to save her sons from death much like what his mother did to save Yeonsangun. When she hesistated, Yeonsangun got his guards to prise open her mouth as he poured the poison into her mouth. Lady Uhm meanwhile was killed in one blow by Yeonsangun with a spiked cudgel.

Jung Tae Woo’s scary portrayal won the applause of viewers, “It’s Jung Tae Woo who drew viewers to “King and I” again.” They also expressed regret that “King and I” would be drawing to a close soon.

The drama is indeed getting exciting with Yeonsangun playing an important part. But some parts of the story are really unreal. For example, Kim Cheo Sun and Jo Chi Kyeom knew Kim Ja Won was evil and yet just allowed him to be. The cast and characters are really saving this drama from becoming unwatchable.

5 thoughts on “Jung Tae Woo impresses as despotic ruler, Yeonsangun

  1. For some reason or another I was compelled to watch this drama.
    Hey coolsmurf. Park Myung Soo has a new single. Its called Fool to Fool. Its really nice!

  2. @Tiffany80, yes the new single of PMS is really nice, can’t believe he can sing a ballad!!! for his wedding somemore!

  3. Thanks for the recent review of JTW in “King and I.” I keep looking for stuff on what the “sweet prince” is doing, after his heartbreaker performance in Dae Jo Young. I gotta say, emotionally, he got game. Do you know what he’s up to now that “King and I” is over?

  4. Jung Tae Woo as Yeonsangun is a bit over the top in his hammy portrayal at times of the frenzied despotic Jeoson monarch. He chews the scenery like an out-of-control lawnmower attacking a stretch of long grass, and contrasts greatly with his earlier restrained and excellent performances in WANG GUHN and YEOIN CHEONHA. Even his recent turn as Dae Jo Young’s half-Khitanese Prince son Geom in DAE JO YOUNG was mannered and I think Tae Woo is letting all these historical portrayals go to his head; he should also portray modern figures in soaps and sitcoms that take place now to broaden his range as an actor. But the scene in which he kills his father’s two concubines in THE KING AND I, WANG KWA NA, was very satifyingly gratuitous and gruesome!

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