Sungkyunkwan Scandal and the Jalgeum Quartet

The Jalgeum Quartet 

From left: Moon Jae Shin (Yoo Ah In), Lee Sun Joon (Micky Yoochun), Kim Yoon Shik/Hee (Park Min Young) and Gu Yong Ha (Song Joong Ki)

Me heart Jalgeum Quartet of Sungkyunkwan Scandal!! Among them, I love Moon Jae Shin (Yoo Ah In) the most. Just because he read all the books at the library - my kinda men..hhahaha. I  mean, a sexy man in ninja suit who loves books? Where can you find a man like him, right? LOL

Omo..omo..I should go back to reality.

For the past one week, I tried to cram all the 20 episodes of Sungkyunkwan Scandal in a few days. That's the reason I was kinda lazy to post anything in my blog. I was infected by Sungkyunwan Scandal fever. Argghh..I need an antidote, please!

Truthfully, most of the time I stray away from watching sageuk (historical/period) drama especially those with heavy plot and Korean dialects which are not familiar to my ears. Rest assured that Sungkyunkwan Scandal does not fall in that category. ^^ It dictates the life of four students of Sungkyunkwan University and how they tackle missions given by King Jeongjo during Joseon Dynasty.

If I should say, the plot consists of:
20% friendship
20% Joseon history
20% academic and life values
20% Ha In Soo's piercing stares ^^
20% Kim yoon hee / shik's and Lee sun joon's intelligence story?

Hence, the story is not a heavy sageuk for me. I am glad no one is dead at the end! ^^

Although I hate history (as a subject in school), but I would like to point out the historical plot in the drama.

(Spoiler Alert: Don't read if you just want to enjoy the drama).

The story started during Joseon Dynasty with Kim Yoon Hee (a lady) entering Sungkyunkwan University bearing her ailing brother's name Kim Yoon Shik and cross-dressed as a man. Women was forbidden from entering university back then and it's a big no no for women to be cleverer than men especially academically. (Hmmm..I wonder how women would turn out to be now if they already start learning during that period?).

Joseon Dynasty is considered one of the great Korean Dynasties during Korean historical period. The four students: Kim Yoon Shik/Hee, Lee Sun Joon, Moon Jae Shin and Gu Yong Ha bonded well in Sungkyunkwan University during this period and later their friendship was tested because of Geum Deung Ji Sa; precious remnants left by the late Crown Prince Sado.

The ruler at the time was King Jeongjo the son of late Crown Prince Sado; whose death is forced upon by King Jeongjo's grandfather - King Yeongjo. The Norons were believed to be the prime suspect behind the death. Hence, King Jeongjo requested the jalgeum quartet to find the Geum Deung Ji Sa in order to clear his father's name and consecutively create a new Joseon Dynasty (perhaps letting women to enter university? ^^). He intended to move the current government to Hwaseong because of his late father as mentioned in one the episodes but was opposed greatly by the Norons.

I will write about Hwaseong Fortress in Suwon and King Jeongjo more comprehensively at another post later.

IMHO, finding Geum Deung Ji Sa is the sole reason why Kim Yoon Shik/Hee and Moon Jae Shin could or SHOULD be together hehehe.. I am their worshipper instead of Kim Yoon Shik/Hee with Lee Sun Joon. Dang! ^^ Anyway, that's about it..I don't want to spoil the story further for the rest of you who haven't get addicted to this drama yet.

Isn't Park Min Young lovely? Put her plastic fantastic aside, I would like to applaud her for her acting ability and how well she commanded the screen as the witty and bright Kim Yoon Hee/Shik. Funny how she wore the student robe with the fur shawl, eh? I bet this picture was taken when autumn reached Naju/Jeonju - where they filmed the drama.

About the drama

The drama is based from the novel The Lives of Sungkyunkwan Confucian Scholars 1 and 2 written by Jung Eun Gwol. Bad Milk has written a comprehensive translation of the novel in his blog here.

Drama download - Medium Quality
Subtitle download - Sungkyunkwan Scandal Soompi Forum 
Official Website: KBS
Sungkyunkwan University Official Website

I got a glimpse of Sungkyunkwan University with my good friend Chi Won in December 2009. Read all about it here.

How to go to Sungkyunkwan University / SeongDae (Seoul Campus)
Go to Hyewa Subway Station, Line 4, Exit 1. Then, walk to SKKU / Sungkyunkwan University bus stop in front of Dunkin Donuts. Ride the shuttle bus for 300 won.  The shuttle bus runs on Mon. - Fri. 07:00~23:00 / Sat. 07:00~19:00.

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