Kingdom season 1, episode 5 recap


Previously on Kingdom, the Prince, Muyeung, Seobi, and Yeung-sin led the Royal Army away from the villagers at Jiyulheon and evaded capture. Now the group is on their way to see Lord Ahn Hyeun to join forces in order to overthrow the Haewon Cho Clan and rid the Kingdom of the zombie disease.

As the group camps overnight in a quiet clearing by a stream, the Prince is wracked with guilt and doubt about how he could have saved more people if he had given himself up to the Royal Army sooner on Kingdom. Muyeung points out that the Prince would only have been the first to die in that case, and that he did the best he could. The Prince wants to be different from the nobles and officials who abandoned their people. Seobi overhears and assures him that he is different, at least in her eyes. She leaves to look for medicine.

The Prince and Muyeung discuss the mysterious Yeung-sin and whether or not they can trust him. Muyeung thinks that based on his skill he may be a Chakho soldier – the elite troop that hunts tigers. There’s nothing they wouldn’t do to stay alive, which makes them extremely dangerous. Yeung-sin returns with news that many of the villagers in the area have already fled ahead of the zombie disease and that no soldiers are following them.

As Seobi digs for herbs and roots, she is attacked by a figure in the dark. She runs back to camp, alerting the men to a monster in the woods. It ends up being Magistrate Beom-Pal, the only survivor from the infected cargo ship. Understandably, the Prince is disgusted with him. With the infected ship making its way down the river, the infection is likely to spread to Sangju. They leave for Sangju immediately to warn them and to stop the disease from spreading across the kingdom.

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In Sangju, rumors about the disease have spread but no official information has arrived. When Lord Ahn Hyeun hears about the disease, he gives the impression that it is something he has faced before. He leaves his mountain home and comes to investigate in town, where the frenzied townspeople are buying talismans and warding rituals to protect them from the curse. The diseased cargo ship is found beached by the river, with blood smears everywhere inside but no bodies to be found.

The Prince’s group comes across a settlement of villagers who looted the stranded ship and buried all the bodies. The Prince promises them lesser punishment if they are shown where the bodies are buried. The men agree to show them, but do not trust the Prince’s word and plan to kill his group to protect their families from his Royal retribution. They are brought to the place where the bodies are buried, but before the villagers can touch them the sun sets and they are set upon by the zombies. The unskilled villagers are the first to be killed and the Prince’s group quickly becomes overwhelmed. Just as it looks like they are going to die, Lord Ahn Hyeun and his men arrive to save them. They obviously know how to handle zombies.

Lord Ahn is a mentor from the Prince’s childhood who taught him about politics and justice. After the battle, they sit down together and the Prince tells him everything about the disease, the conspiracy, and his father’s death. The Prince has many high plans and is understandably tense, but Lord Ahn simply asks him how long it has been since he last slept. He reminds him of his status and that depriving himself of life’s necessities will do him, nor anyone else, any good. He tells him to sleep, if only for tonight.

Seobi is suspicious of Lord Ahn, having seen how he and his men seemed to dispatch the zombies with experience. Muyeung expressed this suspicion to the Prince, pointing out that Lord Ahn didn’t lift a finger to help the scholars when they were arrested by Lord Cho. Is it possible that they are in an alliance? The Prince will not hear of it.

Back in Hanyang, Lord Cho runs experiments to see how the disease can be spread and how fast. He feeds one prisoner, which confuses and annoys his hungry cellmate. Not long into the meal, however, the first prisoner is infected and turns into a zombie, then turns on his cellmate, who then also turns into a zombie. Lord Cho realizes that the disease will be unstoppable once it reaches them and must be contained before that.

Yeung-sin leaves early in the morning to visit a ruined village marked with a monument to the battle of Unpo Wetland. It commemorates the victory of Ahn Hyeon against 30,000 Japanese soldiers with only 500 of his own. He has a memory of saying goodbye to a child wrapped in bandages, promising he’ll come back. The entire town seems to be similarly bandaged, perhaps some kind of skin disease. The village is now deserted and he comes across a small cemetery nearby.

The news comes to Sangju that the five armies have left Hanyang and are headed their way to arrest the Prince. Beom-Pal continues his insane pursuit of Seobi, asking her to run away with him so he can protect her from her treasonous association with the Prince. Seobi has more integrity than maybe anyone in the kingdom and chastises him for running away again. Is it too much to ask for a governor of the people to show a little bravery? She refuses to go with him and runs to warn the Prince.

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Back in Hanyang, Lord Cho has taken in a number of pregnant widows from the surrounding villages, offering them food and shelter. While they all wonder the reason behind the generosity, they are too hungry to ask many questions. Muyeung’s pregnant wife is among them, staying at the palace at her husband’s request so as to assure her safety. It seems that if the Queen doesn’t have a son, she will have one of theirs. Meanwhile, the Queen names herself Regent, filling the vacant throne and taking power. Instead of sending the Five Armies to help contain and eliminate the disease, they are sent to seal off the Hanyang from the rest of the kingdom, letting the other provinces fend for themselves.

What did you think of this episode of Kingdom? Be sure to tell us in the comment section below!