Alright y’all, we are getting back into the swing of things! Starting off with Hotel del Luna which is just the right amount of comedy to horror that my faint heart can take. So far, I love it! I am intrigued by the back stories and want to see this relationship blossom. Episode 2 is coming up sometime tonight and we will try and finish up 3 and 4 tomorrow. We aren’t sure if we will be live, but we are sure that we will be all caught up by the end of the day (hopefully?). Without further ado, let’s get right into it!
The OST for Hotel de Luna can be found HERE!
Caution: Be wary of typos!
HOTEL DE LUNA: EPISODE 1 RECAP
We open on a desolate dusty dirt road with a person, or is it an animal, walking. Ah, it is a person and an animal, one person is walking and is directin the animal who is pulling a wagon with possibly someones remains on it. It looks loke this person is Man-wol, she is likewise dirty and dusty and has her face covered, but the wind blows off her dirty white scarf covering her face. She turns and watches it blow away and we are caught in a poetic moment.
Then we see that the scarf has taken residnece on a stick that several military guards have found. They use this as incentive to ride their horses faster to find whoever they are looking for. In the sky up above is an eagly soaring. The camera follows the eagle all the way to a night scene where Manwol is sitting and eating with a woman who tells her that she is lucky that she is there because this is the only place to eat around here. She asks which country she is from.
But Man wol is emotionless and tells the woman that her drink sucks and she talks too much. She gets up to leave. Manwol pours the drink over the coffin. The halmoni is not detered in her talking and asks Manwol if someone died? Or, did you kill someone?
manwol looks at her annoyed.
Woman – In this kind of weather, only two people pass by here. SOmeone who kills someone or someone who goes to die.
MW – You lived long with your useless tongue *harsh look* took make you live long, can I cut your tongue?
Woman – This old womans tongue is useless for making alcohol, but it is good for saying useful things. It looks like you have been wandering around for awhile, what are you looking for?
MW – I heard that there is a tavern for dead souls to rest.
Woman – Ah, are you lookin for Dalae tavern?
MW – *hopeful* do you know it!
Woman – That is the tavern for the souls who couldn’t go to heaven
MW – How can I get there!
Woman – You can’t go there, it is only for the dead…like them.
Lots of dead people/fighters are behind them, watching them.
Woman – How many souls are you carrying in this coffin?
MW – They were all dead because of me (they died for me).
Woman – Who did you kill for the dead?
Okay, this halmoni might be Mago who is a god.
Manwol is annoyed by this halmoni and pulls out her sword. her name, Man Wol, is on the sword. She holds it to the woman.
MW – Shut up, and tell me how to get there. *tears*
Woman – Ah, Man Wol, this si the moon with a lot of grudges
MW – Tell me, I want to be responsible for the poeple that died for me (that I killed)
Woman – You can’t even be responsibly for yourself, so how can you say that you can be responsible for others life?
MW – If you keep saying unnecessary things, I told you I will cut out your tongue. Just tell me how to get there. If it is only for the dead, I can kill myself.
Sh turns the sword on herself. The woman tells her that she is a poor soul who thinks she can pay for everything with her life. MW tells her that her life is the only thing that she can offer. The sowrd cuts her neck.
Woman – The tavern of the moon is were the dead souls come by themselves.
Horses are heard in the distance. They both turn to look at the soldiers riding toward them. Manwol looks at them and starts to walk toward them, she pulls out her sword and stands in their path, confidently. Her sword is pointed at them.
They charge into her, but her sword just eats them all up. Manwol looks a bit taken aback.
WOman – They are the people that died because of you.
Flashback to Manwol fighting several soldiers in the saytime, she kills them all and is left standing as they all lay dead on the ground. She then picks up a blood stained white cloth, blood also splatters her face as she grips the cloth.
In the present, at night, she looks at the blood stained white cloth and then turns around. The tavern is gone.
MW – Was I supposed to kill everyone and become a demon itself. Then I would come to the tavern of the moon myself?
The moon looms big over her head and the woman starts to talk again, but it is a bodiless voice.
Woman – You poor cocky woman, you found the place to pay for your sins by yourself, just pay for your sin.
Everything grows scary as it feels like someone is there to kill Manwol She pulls out her sword and turns it on someone behind her, but it is a tree. She cuts into the tree and is sent to a flashback of a young man, maybe a teenager. It looks like she was friends with him and maybe blossoming lvoers.
The sword tree keeps her sword, it swallows it! and it grows bigger! A storm blooms overhead and a building starts to grow automatically in front of Manwols eyes. It is almost like a reverse tornado as random scarps of things start to all form into a hotel. Manwols is stunned.
In the distance, the woman looks on pleased.
Woman – The tavern of the moon, where the dead souls rest, has a new owner now.
She turns and opens Manwols wagon. Insode the box are all the belongings that belonged to the souls.
Womans – You guys, come to a nice resting place with me.
She takes them away and we see fireflies following along and the hotel in the background until the camera rests on the huge moon overhead and we see the name of the show: Hotel de Luna. Then we scroll back to the ground and it is 1998.
On the ground is a man with his son talking on a bench at the Han river. It is the boys birthday. SOmeone drops their money on the floor. The father wants to keep it, but the son says no and runs the money back to the couple. The woman comes back and tells the boy he is such a good boy! This woman is Mago, the same woman that Manwol talked to all those years ago.
Mago tells the son that he will become great later, though he is having a hard time now, especially with this father. She gives the father a look. The father tells the woman that his son does not have to buy her flowers, he can get flowers for free. But the son says that he likes flowers. he also tells his father not to do any dangerous things to make money for his birthday. Mago tells him that he is a good boy. The father tries to shoo her away.
All of a sudden there is an emergency siren and we see lots of emergency crew in the han river, they are looking for a body just as a ghost comes out (Sohn the Guest, anyone? lol). The woman looks at all the people on the river side, it is another river side from where the boy was, I think. She looks up and sees the man that killed her. Then the water starts to bubble.
Cut to Hotel de Luna. We see Manwol walking through the hotel and see images of Manwol and the hoel through the years. She has not aged at all, only the scenery changes around her as the hotel continues to grow and change. Manwol makes it to her room, she is wearing a silky robe and carrying a quiet demeanor.
Her manager knocks on the door, it is Joonseok, he greets her happily and tells her that he will light up their sign board. She tells him to open the business, but she does not like the full moon. It is super bright, so dont accept people who have died too gruesomly. He tells her that they should not discriminate their guests. But Manwol is upset and tells him not to accept them. He says that they are already dead so they are not in a hurry.
Joonseok says that he will take care of them out of her sight. Then he bows and leaves. Manwol is annoyed and tells herself, ah, that F-ing moon, I am sick and tired of it. The lights start to fliscker on and the vines start to grow on the side The hotel also starts to grow several more stories over night as well. it is turning into a castle like building that towers over the city, in the blink of an eye.
meanwhile, the father that we saw earlier is running from the cops. it looks like he did indeed get into some trouble that his ton told him not to. The father trips and falls down a series of steps, the money he stole from a register (he literally took the entire register) pops open. Onle a few bucks are inside. He curses his luck and thinks that he thought he died. Then he hears the cops and gets up to run again, he runs right into Hotel de Luna.
He wonders if this hotel will charge a lot and then starts to tie his show. The woman from the river walks up right past him, water dripping behind her. She walks right to the register where Hyung-joong, the bellhop, pleasantly asks her how long she has been dead. She tells him ten days.
The father watches this conversation outside and sees her go to the elevator. He thinks, okay, that is the elevator. he goes straight to the elevator and rides it up. he gets off at an amazing floor that has a grand opening to the lobby. The woman who died in the river is sitting there. He wonders if this hotel will charge him for sitting there. He asks the woman if he sis okay, she does not look good. She says that she got this way in the Han river.
He wonders again if they charge a lot? She says she does not know, it is her first time there. He looks around and we see that he has blood on the back of his head. Cut to his body still at the foot of the steps, his leg is all broken and blood is on the ground. But his finger moves, he is still alive a little bit! A police siren goes off.
The father hears this siren in the hotel and starts to look around a bit more in alarm. He walks off. Joonseok, the manager walks by and notices him walking, he makes a comment about the Han river woman and then says that this man shouldnt’ be here. He is still alive. If the boss sees him then he is really dead. Find him and let him out!
The father is still walking around and thinks that he needs to hide for a few hours. Maybe in the restroom? But he sees an expensive looking vase and comes to look at it. However, he tells himself that he should not take it, though he hopes he will see it again. He leaves, but the golden snake on the case comes alive and starts to slither after him.
The father keeps walking around and gets to a swimming pool. He goes inside and, instaed of a swimming pool, there is a huge beach and an ocean. he is outside somewhere. One of the workers asks him if he would like to use the beach? I can lend you clothing. This woman is Seohee, the room manager. The father says that it is okay and hurries out.
he sees the bartender, Sunbi, who greets him and asks if he can do anything. The father kind of smile nods and escapes to the rooftop. But he wonders if this place was this tall at the begining? He looks over the side and is instantly scared of the heights, curling his hands back comically in fear.
Inside, te hoteliers talk about the live person who came to the hotel. They are more concerned with what their boss will tell them than the actually live persons soul walking around. Flashback to Manwol having a meeting with all her people and exploding in rage saying that she will send them all to the afterworld if they mess up again. they think they will be houded by her for this for another 50 years. Hyunjoong thinks it is his fault since he is the front door guy. They say it is all his fault, thats true. Seohee says she still has something to doo there, so the cannot go to the afterlife yet.
The manager thinks that, if the boss sees him, he will never leave this place. He will die here.
Upstairs, Manwol sees that the golden snake is missing. She thinks that they have a thief. How dare they.
Cut to the father walking through a beautiful roes garden, then he gets to antoher scarier part of the garden where an old tree is. It might be that original tree. The father thinks that he can take the pretty flowers growing on this super scary tree to his son, Chan-sung. He jumps a few times and pulls a blossom off the tree. But he is blown back by a force of energy and then stepped on by Manwol. He grimmaces in pain.
MW – Who are you? You still feel pain? You are a thief.
Father – I didnt’ do anything! I didnt’ steal anything!
MW – Then what is this?
The gold snake comes slithering out of his jacket.
Father – I didnt’ steal it!
MW – DO you want to be bitten and die?
Father – Forgive me!
ME – If a human dies, just die. You don’t have to be in limbo, just die. You dont’ know things, you are already dying.
He looks at his arms in fright, they are disappearing in front of him!
Cut to the hospital where his son, Chan-sung tearily looks at his father getting CPR behind glass doors of the hospital. Several people are working on him and his heart rate beeps on the screen. It is not looking good.
In the hotel, the father is on his knees begging Manwol to save him, he has a son! Manwol looks as if she could not care less and mutters, poor son. But then she notices the flower blossom.
MW – What is this flower?
Father – Today is my sons birthday, he wanted a flower as a birthday gift so I got it from the tree! I am sorry!
MW – That tree does not flower.
Father – It was there! I did not touch anything else!
MW – *looking at the tree* So, you gave this human a flower and gave him a branch also? So, you want to save his life? *looking at the father* so this is a birthday gift for your son?
Father – He is a good boy, he is too smart and too nice for me. if you forgive me then I will not think of stupid things and I will raise him well.
MW -Okay, I will save your life.
Father – Thank you! Thank you!
MW – You go back and raise your son well, then give him to me. It is your life or his life. he is a young boy. For a human to do his part, maybe he has to grow up twenty more years. Then, promise to me that you will give me your son.
Father – My son?
MW – If you do not like it then you are dead tonight.
he starts to disappear even more. She smiles.
MW – Decide now, you dont’ have much time to think about it.
Father – If I die, then Chansung will be alone.
MW – So do youwant to give your sone to me, or die now?
Father – I promise it to you!
MW – *smiles* Okay, I will get your son twenty years later. Goodbye.
She touches his head and the father wakes up in his body withhis son crying over him. He whispers his name and the sone runs out and says that hsi father is not dead! The doctors run back in and see that he is alive. Then they run out to tell people he is not dead yet.
The fathers tears fall as he keeps saying his sones name.
Int he hotel, Manwol sees that the father left the birthday gift. Though she does not look that upset or happy about it. She throws it at the tree and it breaks into many pieces around the tree. She walks away.
Later on, the father leaves eh hospital with his son and sees a funeral processional for a police woman. it is the dead woman from the han river. He recognizes her but tells his son that he does not know her.
Cut to the polciewoman telling Manwol that she died as an undercover officer. Manwol tells her that she died doing something good, so she will give her an express limo. She can rest and then leave. But the woman says that she cannot leave now. Manwol tells her that most guests say that, do youw ant revenge? it won’t take their life. You can give them a hard time, but it will be karma for you for your next life. You can be reborn in a good condtion. Or you can be reborn as a dog.
The woman says that this is nto for revenge. The person I was following cannot be arrested by human law. that is why I want to capture it. Manwol says she has a lot of sense of responsibility, but to do that, you have to pay me with human money. Do you have any money saved somewhere? She says yes. manwol takes off her glasses and smiles, what can i do for you?
The woman digs into the back of her head nd pulls out a bullet. Manwol takes it and smiles again.
Cut to a mayor event where he is giving an award to the gangster guys who killed the police officer. (this is also a scene from a previous drama! Fighting/Lawless Lawyer I think). Btu then the lights cut off and Manwl comes in wearing new clothing. She walks to the front with a rifle looking fabulous in purple silk. The mayor yells that she needs to lower her rifle! But he is the only one that sees her, no one else does.
She points her rifle at him and fires. The bullet slowly comes out and hits the mayor right in the heart. manwol happily smiles and rests an arm on her rifle as she looks at him. The mayor says that she was shot! She shot me! But everyone is all like, um, what are you doing? Then the police woman shows up looking all spooky in her police uniform. The mayor freaks out and yells that the gangsters killed the police woman!
Manwol is having a wonderful time. The police woman lets a few tears falls. Manwon walks out victoriously with the rifle over her shoulders as if it is giving her the perfect stretch.
In her office, the manager says that Manwol put The Bullet of Grudge in his heart, so that is worse than death. manwol just causally says that when she has haunted him enough, she will come back to the hotel. She takes a sip of her champagne and then asks the manager if he found what she wanted. he pulls out what he found in the locker. it is a bag of diamonds that the police officer found during her investigation.
Manwol is so happy and says that she can drink champaign for awhile now. But theanager says that they have a loan that is past due and takes half. Manwol is all like, thta much? Well, that is okay at least I have this. But the manager says that he needs that much for future payments. She is annoyed and asks how he can run the hotel like this! But he says that all this money is for her car and things. It all costs money.
She says er former manager was good at investing, so she had no problem with money. He says that he heard that she had to harvest tree roots to eat because of her former manager. She grips her chair in annoyance. He tells her to invest money for the next manager after her. So he will keep that much for his education. She asks, raising a kid costs this much money? He says yes.
She lets go of his grip on the diamonds and says to take it all. When the little boy grows up I will make him work hard. She is left with two diamonds.
The father looks at his bank account, he has a lot of money in there now, like $100,000 (USD). He is sitting next to his son and says that his was not a dream, maybe he really did sell his son. He tells his son that he has to find that hotel and return the money. He gets up and starts to hooble around on his crutches with his son as he searcher for the hotel. But he can’t find it so he tells his sone to wait a moment as he looks.
That is when a black car drives up. The window rolls down and Manwol looks at the son and smiles. The son also smiles. The manager smiles as well. Then they drive off. Manwol tells the manager to send flowers for the sons birthday, every birthday, that way they won’t forget. The flowers should be Evening Primrose. Then the son turns and sees the building, it is right in front of him. Though it is not a huge towering building.
CURRENT TIME IN 2019
Chan-sung shows up inside a huge hotel that looks like the chandelier is dripping in diamonds. he looks around and is then greeted by a worker who brings him up to meet the president. Cut to him sitting across from the president. She tells him that he will not regret that he left the Singapore hotel and extends her hand. He stands and shakes it with thank you’s for hiring him. She says that he refused the proposal last year, why did you take it this year? He says that 20 years has passed to he promised his father that he would not come back to Korea for 20 years. Last year was year 20, this year is the 21.
She tells him that he must have his reasons. He says it is not crime or debt, it is all superstition. The president says old people keep those kinds of thoughts, they say it is unlucky so we should follow. He asks if there is a hotel covere din ivy’s in Seoul that is almost 100 floors high and has a pool that looks like an ocean, but 20 years ago? It should not be here right? The president is all like, umm…
Chansung walks away with one of the other employees who tells him that his birthday gift arrived and is on his desk. Chansung looks alarmed and goes to see the Evening Primrose sitting on the desk. He is stunned and wonders why he still has this birthday gift this year? it has been 21 years. The gift says Hotel de Luna on it. He opens the card and wonders what this Hotel de Luna is.
Dear Koo Chang-sung,
You are hired in our Hotel de Luna starting today. Come to work tomorrow.
Hotel De Luna president,
He wonders if this hotel really existed? He has the address so he starts to go there while holding this gift. But he throws it in the trash instead and takes the subway. The subway is super crowed, but then he gets to a cart that is empty save for one person. That person is Manwol.
She sits in the seat and holds his birthday flower gift in her hands. He gulps and walks up to her, sitting across from her.
CS – Are you the one that bought me?
MW – Ah, you were ready for that? I thought you would ask who I was first
CS – I didn’t have to, you were exactly the same as father described – the president of Hotel de Luna. Youa re the one that sends the flowers.
MW – *amused* Did you throw all your birthday flowers in the trashcan, like this one?
CS – I was nervous, just in case what abogi said was true.
MW – That is why you went to different countries?
CS – I was running away from you, I thought it ended last year. I was caught off guard.
MW – That is why I came this year, to give you piece of mind for one year. So come and work.
CS – Abogi said you wer a scary person, if I refuse, will you kill me?
MW – Are you not scared of me? Yes, I am too pretty to be scary, I acknowledge that.
CS – So I will continuously refuse your offer and not be timid.
MW – Ha, I should not have sent you flowers, I should have sent a canary with it’s head chopped off. I will give you a different birthday gift now.
She stands and everything goes dark as she slowly approaches Chansung. He is nervous.
CS – Yes, you are a powerful being and your hotel should be a powerful place! So why do you want a regular guy like me? I will have no use for you. Can you give up?
She puts her stilleto foot between his legs and lifts his head up.
CS – Are you going to make me a canary without a head as my birthday gift?
She blows in his face.
MW – Don’t worry, weak Koo Chang-sung, you will still keep your head.
CS – What did you do to me?
MW – I gave you a gift, happy birthday. This birthday gift is very special.
She looks at him as they continue to barrel up the subway until the doors open.
MW – Get off.
he hops up but slowly turns around.
MW – Do you want to spend more time with me?
he grabs the flowers.
CS – I did not throw it away on purpose. Between countries, they check agricultural products. he leaves with the flowers as she smirks.
While walking up the street, Chansung wonders what she did to him. What is she going to do to him? He wonders if he will become her toy? Then he hears his father’s voice tell him to run away! It is a scary place, run away, I saw dead people there. Run away Chan-sung, if you see her then run away. it is a flashback to his father in the hospital, maybe on his deathbed.
In the present, Chan-sung keeps walking and then decides to get his luggage and tell his boss that he is sorry but he cannto make it to work. But his eyes are bugging him so he rubs them. However, when he can see again, he sees ghosts.
In the hotel, Manwol happily says that Chan-sung will now open his eyes to the world. The manager says that this was her gift. She says that he will work there so he needs to get over it. But the manager says that he might have an accident because he will be shocked when he first sees them. She tells him that he should not die from shock.
In the street, Manwol tells the woman ghost that he was there first, you saw me standing there. But she says that she cannot see and removes her glasses to show bloody holes where her eyes where. She tells him that she cannot see, where are you, tell me. She starts to walk with her arms up looking for him.
The taxi shows up asking if he is getting in? He says yes, I am getting in, alerting the ghost to where he is as if this is a game of Marco Polo. He takes off running as the ghost slowly follows. But she can hop to different spots and suprised him again! Manwol is amused and thinks that he is seeing scary things from the begining.
Chan-sung hides in the alley, but Manwol drops something on him happily. He gets up and runs away. Manwol happily walks on a ledge. The ghost finds Chansung again, he ells it to go away from him! Manwol thinks that the ghost should stop now or she will probably kill her weak Chansung.
The ghost is about to take off her glasses again. Chansung screams for her to leave him alone. Manwol covers his mouth and throws something for the ghost to walk in another direction. Then she happily stands and asks Chansung if he is going on a nice trip? My gift is not filtered between borders.
He figures out that the gift is seeing ghosts. He is super shocked and rubs his eyes again. She tells him that they should go to a nice restaurant around there. He wonders if these ghosts will kill him? She says no, these ghosts do not have enought poer to kill the living unless you have heart problems. Lets go. He says he is not going unless she makes his eyes normal.
She tells him that if this restaurant closes then she will close his eyes forever. he reluctantly goes to the restaurant, but is eyes are closed. She tells him to open his eyes. She is at this restaurant because it is about eating until you die (or something like that). She says it is difficult to get food from there because they run out of food quickly.
the cafe puts a sign up saying that they ran out of ingredients. She points to the sign and says, see, we could have missed it.
Outside, the mayor is a bum looking through trash. But he sees Manwol through the window and remembers her as the woman who shot him.
Inside, Chansung asks Manwol if he will see scary things all the time? She tells him that he was unlucky to see a scary thing all the time. She points to a kid happily eating and says most of them are normal looking, just pretend like they are human.
Chansung asks why he is there? Manwol explains that some don’t know that they are dead or they are obsessed with things they loved while they were living. He asks why she wants him to see this? She says that he should have come to her hotel when she asked. then she talks about the dumplings and how they are so hot. How did that comedian eat so many.
Chansung asks if she is dead? She says she is not dead, she just exists. He wonders if that means she can die at some point? She says, if I can die, does that mean you want to kill me? She pushes the dumpling towards him and tells him to try one bite. She will give him a chance to see if he can be succesful. He sincerely tells her that he just wants her to disappear from in front of him.
They walk away together after eating. She is content and he is upset. She addresses him as Good Chan-sung who hates to see her. So buy a milk tea across the street that I can drink and die. He complains and says that she ate so many mandu. She tells him to hurry, if you are late and the store closes then you are dead.
He sighs and walks off. This is the mayors chance. He stumbles toward her.
Mayor – You shot me, you shot me.
MW – You are destroyed as much as your sin. The worst thing will wait for you in the afterlife.
He raises something rusted to stab her with.
Mayor – This is all because of you, DIE!
He stabs her with it, she does not try to dodge or anything and just takes the blow. It looks like she does not feel anything. He starts to chuckle and she is sent to a flashback to the very distant past from before seh became the boss of the hotel.
The mayor runs off. CHan-sung yells at him and runs to Manwol.
MW – WHy do humans always blame others for their own sins?
CS – Are you okay!
MW – I can’t blame that old man. I was like him. Good Chan-sung, you were not successful eating mandu in one bite. I will give you a chance. If you want, you can run away. If you turn away and leave, then, as you wish I will be gone from your life. Just leave.
He looks at her.
MW – If you do not leave now then it will be too late.
He looks at her again and then runs off. She is left alone in her very white dress outfit.
But Chan-sung comes back with a wagon.
MW – What?
CS – I will support you, just hop on. We can go to Hospital de Luna or whatever.
MW – What are you doing?
CS – I dont’ have that much strength to carry you and run. So hope on!
He starts to get things ready. She stands up easily and pulls the knife from her.
MW – Good Chan-sung, you are really weak. *smiles* I really like your weakness that brought this carrier.
CS – I shouldn’t have done this, me as a weak person for someone who does not die from stabbing. Okay, I will go my own way. *he turns to walk away*
MW – You can’t.
He turns and sees her flowting the knife thing in her arm and then pointing it at him. He asks, are you really going to….
Then the knife takes off, Chan-sung dodges it, it shoots through the alley, turning left and right until it stabs the mayor in the heart. he turns to dust.
Chansung looks at her.
MW – You lost your last chance to give up. If you run away – then I will kill you.
I think IU looks stunningly beautiful in those flashback. Hopefully there will be more flashback of her in future episodes.
She definitely looks wonderful in those flashbacks. I wonder how she became a bandit and how the friendship blossomed with the royal guard.
Someone mentioned there is an extra hand in this promotion poster. Thanks for this high quality poster. It clearly shows an extra hand in shadow. I wonder which one’s hand that is.
OMG, I did not notice before! That extra hand is so creepy!