5 Times Episodes 7-8 Of “The Forbidden Marriage” Took Us By Surprise

After two weeks, “The Forbidden Marriage” and its fun crew are finally back! We pick up right where we left off with So Rang (Park Ju Hyun) having been kidnapped by Jo Sung Gyun’s (Yang Dong Geun’s) nefarious lackeys and her besotted king and faithful bodyguard prepared to find her at all cost. But this week’s episodes have plenty of surprises in store, and just when the good guys appear to be winning, Jo Sung Gyun goes all out in the worst of ways.

Here are the most surprising moments from this week’s episodes!

Warning: spoilers for episodes 7-8 below.

1. King Yi Heon makes a move

Yi Heon (Kim Young Dae) might have been torn at first on whether his feelings for So Rang were a result of her being able to channel the late Crown Princess’s (Kim Min Ju’s) spirit, but So Rang is a force of nature, and it’s finally hitting him that he succumbed to her a long time ago. No more so than when he, despite running a fever and dealing with a good amount of trauma after the most recent hanging in the palace, runs out, sword in hand, after hearing of So Rang’s kidnapping. After finding her safe and sound, rescued by the leader of a hidden village in the mountains, he can’t tear his eyes from her. The village in question has remained hidden due to defying the edict of marriage being forbidden and allowing couples to live there, have children, and raise them. It’s telling that Yi Heon witnesses one such wedding and his eyes immediately go to So Rang with the fondest smile. It’s actually adorable how much he loves her.

Thus, once she returns to the palace safe and sound, Yi Heon can’t stop obsessing over her, her every word, and gesture. So when she wipes a petal from his cheek while he’s in the bath, he’s gone, and he initiates a steamy kiss.

This is a big moment for him, and he’s certain that So Rang must feel the same, which is why he’s bewildered when she pulls away, accuses him of confusing her with the Crown Princess, and tells him not to kiss her if he doesn’t mean it. And she runs off while he’s still stammering. Poor guy. But wow, what a scene. Those two have serious chemistry.

2. So Rang decides to leave the palace

Surprisingly enough, it’s after being rescued that So Rang loses her spark. First, there’s the fact that Lee Shin Won (Kim Woo Seok) is very obviously in love with her and keeps saying things like this:

So Rang genuinely cares for Shin Won, just not in that way. She’s heartbroken at the way this is tearing a rift between them while understanding that he needs time. And in the midst of all of this, Grand Queen Dowager (Cha Mi Kyung) has finally heard that her grandson went racing after a palace maid of all people, and she’s not pleased. I was hoping that we wouldn’t go the disapproving mother-in-law (or in this case, grandmother-in-law) route, but here we are. She offers So Rang a choice: to leave the palace, or to stay and become a placeholder to stir up the King’s desire a bit so that he can unleash it on a respectable noblewoman. So Rang might be of noble blood, but she has no way of proving that or the murder attempt on her. So it’s no wonder that she elects to leave the palace.

And Yi Heon is not pleased because our guy had big plans to confess to her after taking her on a trip to one of the other secluded palaces. He’s hurt when she asks if he’ll just force her to stay if she doesn’t want to, and that seems to put the brakes on our romance. But this show does pretty well on the communication front, so it isn’t long before someone makes a move. And surprisingly, the King doesn’t get to confess first.

3. So Rang’s surprise confession

At this point, the entire royal court knows that the King has it bad for So Rang. After watching him languish and pull weeds, wondering if she’s been forcing herself to remain by his side this whole time, they tell him to ask her again on why she wants to leave so badly. Yi Heon hesitantly does so and is flabbergasted when So Rang agrees that it is his fault that she hates being the only one with genuine feelings while he’s busy mistaking her for the Crown Princess. It’s almost hilarious because we know that’s not the case, but it’s reasonable for So Rang to believe that because he has never given her the words.

Well he sure does this time in the most swoon-worthy of ways. And we finally get our main couple together! They’re so gone for each other, it’s just adorable. He’s quiet with a wry sense of humor, and she’s just all over the pace. Too cute.

Alas, trouble continues to brew with Jo Sung Gyun, and he chooses this night of all nights to start going all in.

4. Chun Seok’s death

Sung Gyun was forced to go on defense when Yi Heon captured his lackeys and began targeting his kidnapping operations across the country. Seo Woon Jung (Park Sun Young), So Rang’s former evil stepmother, is heavily involved in said operations, as she pays to have daughters of noble families kidnapped and sold to gross men so that her daughter (masquerading as Ye Hyeon Seon) has a better chance of becoming queen. Yikes. 

Ja Chun Seok (Yoon Jung Hoon), the young captain of the State Guard and Shin Won’s assistant, is unfortunately blackmailed into staying silent about incriminating evidence when Woon Jung threatens the life of the woman he loves. At first, we’re led to believe that he’ll betray Shin Won, but the opposite happens. When Sung Gyun moves in on the king’s secluded palace, using it as a chance to kill Yi Heon away from the more heavily-guarded main palace, Chun Seok steps in and takes a poisoned dart for Shin Won. A horrified Shin Won begs him to stay conscious, but it’s too late, and Chun Seok dies.

Shin Won manages to warn Yi Heon in time but at great cost. A dart hits him too, and while it nearly kills him (and nearly sends Yi Heon into madness once more), he instead loses the ability to use his right arm. Yi Heon and Shin Won all know who did it, but, as usual, the lack of evidence is the issue.

5. Shin Won decides to leave the palace

Everyone wants to leave the palace these days! Shin Won had already resigned from his position before Chun Seok’s death for the pure reason that seeing So Rang every day with the king is becoming torture. But the loss of his sword arm compounds it. After burying Chun Seok, he sets out of the palace, telling a tearful So Rang that it’s dangerous to be near him now because he can’t protect her or anyone anymore.

Yi Heon stands in his path without a word, but Shin Won silently bows and walks past him. And both So Rang and Yi Heon grieve the departure of their dearest friend.

This is all the sadder because these three just work so well together. Back in that mountain village, they were so happy just hanging out around each other without jealousy.

Yi Heon and Shin Won genuinely look like two dads with their kid, while So Rang looks on fondly. 

It’s just a shame that all these feelings have muddied what was an incredibly strong partnership. Yet, it’s realistic that Shin Won needs time to sort through his feelings and find his own purpose, which, for the longest time, was finding Ye Hyeon Seon. Both men need reasons, passions, and a purpose beyond a woman. And while Yi Heon has the land he cares about, Shin Won has nothing. Perhaps this distance and Shin Won’s solo investigations will do him some good.

Or perhaps not. Shin Won was the first to quickly put together that So Rang faked a bout of possession in the mountain village after reading the leader’s journal. She did it to keep Yi Heon and Shin Won safe, but the seed of doubt has been sown in Shin Won—perhaps it was there from the start—that So Rang’s powers aren’t necessarily real. Next week’s preview also shows Shin Won finding that he was the reason that Ye Hyeon Seon was “killed” so that Woon Jung’s biological daughter could marry him instead. Kim Woo Seok is nailing the stoic but sweet soldier here, so seeing him angry is going to be incredible.

The pacing thus far has been excellent, and with only four episodes left, we have a lot of ground to cover and just enough episodes to do so. The preview also shows So Rang struggling to deal with the Grand Queen Dowager and pushing Yi Heon away, which seems a little odd for her usually straightforward, grab-the-bull-by-the-horns character to do. Here’s hoping that the angst lessens next week and the good guys start winning more! They’re seriously cute when they do!

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What did you think of this week’s episodes? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

Shalini_A is a long time Asian-drama addict. When not watching dramas, she works as a lawyer, fangirls over Ji Sung, and attempts to write the greatest fantasy romance of all time. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram, and feel free to ask her anything!

Currently Watching: Summer Strike,” “The Forbidden Marriage.”
Looking Forward to: “Island,” “The Interest of Love,” “Queen of the Scene,” “Black Knight,” and Ji Sung’s next drama.

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