Episode 2 of Under the Queen’s Umbrella sees the queen and the other concubines prepare their sons for the upcoming test to choose the crown prince’s next cohort. The episode is now streaming on Netflix.
The Queen Dowager meets with Consort Hwang late at night for tea and has a conversation filled with an underlying message. She convinces Hwang to throw in Prince Ui Seong’s name in the running for the next cohort.
The former Queen Yoon tells Hwa Ryeong that while her own son did suffer from hyeolheogwol, he recovered from it. It was something else that led to his death, and they didn’t stop there.
Being the queen, her sons were always a threat and three of her remaining four sons were killed even after they gave up any ideas of reclaiming the throne. She tells Hwa Ryeong that she must raise all her sons to be ready for kingship or else they’ll never be safe.
All the concubines begin training their sons in the ways listed in the book given to them by the Queen Dowager. The crown prince finally wakes up from his illness and is asked to take things easy until he fully recovers.
The queen gathers her sons to convince her sons to apply for the position of the cohort. None of them is particularly interested in doing so but Grand Prince Gyeseong says that he’ll apply if that’s what his mother wishes.
The queen has to rely upon Gyeseong as he’s the one most keen on studies amongst her sons but after paying a visit to lord who teaches them at Jonghak, she finds out that all her sons are in danger of failing out of the academy.
Her sons run into Ui Seong who once again insults the queen and Seongnam, the second son, stands up for his mother once again while making sure not to hit Ui Seong in front of so many witnesses.
The queen and Lady Shin wonder why Gyeseong is falling behind in his studies and they find him wandering in the distance. They follow him and end up at some abandoned huts. What they witness, devastates the queen as she finds a place to hide and cry freely.
The crown prince visits Seongnam’s quarters for a chat. Meanwhile, the queen’s other sons apply to the position of the cohort. Seongnam and his older brother reminisce about the days when they were growing up and the crown prince asks Seongnam to be his cohort and give him company.
Seongnam arrives at the final possible moment to submit his name and the queen is overjoyed after the initial disappointment she witnessed. She tells Lady Shin that they must keep Gyeseong’s matter a secret at any cost.
The concubines scramble to get the finest tutors for their sons but the queen takes the matter into her own hands. She pores over all the books and marks out possible questions and important passages to help her children study.
One of the consorts is informed by her court lady that Gyeseong has been sneaking off somewhere during the day. She assumes that he’s going to study in secret with a tutor so she follows him the next day to the same abandoned hut.
What she sees is infinitely more shocking, as Grand Prince Gyeseong is applying make-up to his face and making himself look like a woman.
- The tone of this episode is more settled down and clear. The serious moments and the lighthearted moments are distinct from each other making for a well-balanced episode.
- Kim Hye-su’s expressions as the queen are certainly eye-catching. The way her face contorts with each emotion is amusing and impressive at the same time.
- The game of chess being played by the Queen Dowager adds a level of intrigue to the series and how she moves her pawns against the Queen will be exciting to watch.
- The reveal that a prince prefers to make himself appear as a woman is a major development. Given the era and his high status, it’ll be a key moment whenever this issue is addressed in public.
Under the Queen's Umbrella
Director: Kim Hyung-sik
Date Created: 2022-10-16 19:30