Jewel in the Palace

I'm back, after a one-week summery hot vacation in the province. phew! And these coming weeks, I’ll probably be very busy inputting all the photographs that we had.

Magnificent! Superb! Breathtaking! Wonderful! Brilliant! Glorious! Marvelous! Bravura! Outstanding! Excellent! Grand! These are the words that I can say about "Jewel in the Palace". Of all the Korean TV series that I watched, this is the number 1 in my list. It's a 10/10 rating for me.

I watched this TV series long time ago; it wasn't aired yet in channel 7. The DVDs are19 discs in all, 76 episodes more or less. That means you'll have to spend 76 hours just to watch this drama.

I'm sooo in love with the story of Janggeum, her perseverance, struggle, hope and dedication and most of all her "love story". The story has its unique combination of two themes: the successful rise of a female, which is rarely covered in historical genre, and the elements of traditional food and medicine.

"The TV miniseries Daejanggeum, or Jewel in the Palace, which aired on GMA-7 is the highest rating primetime Koreanovela here in the Philippnes and even in other Asian countries. The series is based on the story of a real historical figure (Jang-geum) who was the first and only woman to serve as head physician to the King in the rigidly hierarchical and male-dominated social structure of the Joseon Dynasty."

"Your fate will be decided by three women. The first one, you didn't want to kill her, but she will be killed. The second one, you will save her, but she will die because of you. The third one, she will kill you, but because of this, will be the saviour of many ...'"

FACT FILE:
  • In actual history, the King did fall in love with Jang Geum, but he can't do anything to save Jang Geum after his death...

(Nothing much is written about Jang Geum in history, so the above statement is FALSE!)!

  • King Jung Jong's Wife-Queen, Queen Munjeong was a major historical figure in Korean History. She ruled Korea from behind the veil with absolute power for 8 years. Thus, Jang-geum was not the only woman who broke through barrier of gender inequality and sexual discrimination. A touch of this was mentioned in the series.(Gerry Tan)
  • During the reign of Jungjong (the 11th Joseon King) there was a major conflict between two Confucian factions. One is the Yanban, to which the Right Minister Oh belongs. These Yanban were descendants of the group responsible for King Sejong's (4th Joseon King) accession to the throne, and as a result of this service, accumulated a great deal of power and wealth ever since. The other faction is the Shilin to which the Left Minister Pak and Min jung-ho belongs to.They (Shilin) believe that a person should be suited for a position based on merit and not on breeding and connections,thus in direct opposition to the Yanban code.This is truly the Shilin philosophy and the King took it a step further by appointing Jang-geum as his Personal physician and bestowed her the title of Daejanggeum.(Gerry Tan)
  • Dae Jan Geum is the one and only female to be a King's Personal physician. Until today even the Presidential Personal physician is still a male. (Gerry Tan)
  • The King tried to push for reforms by appointing Jo Gwangjo to his administration who tried but failed and suffered tremendous setbacks.He was subsequently exiled. In 1521, an event occured when the Yanban pressed for Jo's execution rather than exile. This served as a historical basis for the Sulfur Duck incident where Lady Court Han was accused to be in league with Jo. (although the character of Jo is not seen but references to him were made throughout the story, I think it is common knowledge that the Koreans know this historical incident but we are oblivios to Korean Joseon History are keep in a limbo on who Jo was. Gerry Tan)
  • There was a person named Min Jung-Ho, but he had no romantic relationship with Jang-Geum at all.
  • Geum Young(Jing Ying) and Court Lady Choi existed in actual history. However,the historical Court Lady Choi was 10 times worse than the one portrayed in the show.Apart from making Jang-geum's life miserable,she allegedly even forced Geum Young into being one of the King's concubines.
  • There was supposed to be a kissing scene of Lee Young Ae and Ji Jin Hee, but Lee Young Ae thought it was not appropriate, hence they did not.
  • Court Lady Han's character(played by Yang Mi-Gyeong) was supposed to die earlier.However, due to the fans' protest, the director 'delayed' her death scene.
  • Park Eun-Hye was originally cast to take the role of 'Seo Jang-Geum', but later on when it was confirmed that Lee Young Ae acting in the show as well, Park Eun-Hye was re-cast again to take over the role of 'Yeon-Sheng'.
  • Kyun Mi-Ri was supposed to play the role of Court Lady Han(Han sang goon), but later on Yang Mi-Gyeong took over the role.
  • On sunday, (May 1st 2005) TVB (Hong Kong television network) has finally finished airing this series in Hong Kong, and the last episode broke the golden record by achieving 44 average rating as well as 49 at the highest point. This series just beaten 'Nan Chan Lui Aui'/War of Genders acted by Dodo Cheng and Davo Wong in year 2000 by only one point.
Reference: http://hkadb.net/index.php/


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