In the last episode of The Tale of Nokdu, Nokdu and Dongju got themselves caught up in a father-daughter spat while in the city. Nokdu was there to steal a golden elephant from his fake father-in-law and Dongju was there to purchase something for her one-woman rebellion, but she was actually there because she kind of likes Nokdu and is not ready to admit it to herself yet.
Everything came to a head at Dongju’s old family house which is across the street from the home of the man that Nokdu was stealing the elephant from (and his female identity from). The father-in-law had found his daughter-in-law and is ready to kill her in order to receive the widow award from the King. All this led to Nokdu and Dongju getting trapped in a carriage and having to swap clothing so that Nokdu does not reveal that he is a man and not a dainty woman. And now we are all caught up!
PS. Yesterdays recap was cancelled due to the Korean National Baseball League Playoffs. They are airing it today (Tuesday). We aren’t sure when they will air today’s episode though.
Our recap starts at 22:00 KST!
Caution: Be wary of typos
Character Chart: The Tale of Nokdu Shorthand Character Chart
How we do this: We update the post around every 10 minutes. Sometimes sooner, sometimes later depending on the scene. There will be typos which we have fantasies of fixing once the episode finishes airing. Also, there might be lovely updates at the bottom, so check back in!
Recap Countdown: starts at 22:00 KST….check Twitter for updates!
KOREAN DRAMA THE TALE OF NOKDU EPISODE 5 (9&10) RECAP
We open on the dark street with the carriage sitting in the middle of the road and the armed men running up to it. They hold their swords up to the female assassin, she is about to unsheath her own sword. But then Nokdu comes barreling out of the carriage in Dongju’s clothing. Everyone is confused for a moment.
Then Nokdu runs to the assassin and asks why she is there? You will mess everything up. The assassin says that she heard she was captured. She is there to help!
Then the men start to talk to Nokdu so Nokdu slaps all of them and yells, HOW DARE YOU! SHE IS MY FRIEND. He turns to the assassin and whispers for her to leave. Then he slaps another man who is trying to open the carriage and guards it becaue Dongju is still inside.
The father comes out just then and yells toward Nokdu.
Meanwhile, the real daughter in law is standing in Dongju’s family house with Yool-moo, she kind of awkwardly says that Donju is in danger.
Yool-moo helps her and looks like he has a plan of his own. She thanks him but says that it will most likely not work.
Outside, the father in law tells Nokdu that he is embarrassed because of her. But then he sees that this is actually the woman in front of the widow place. The pretty one from behind, um, why are you here? He tells them to open the carrier.
Nokdu tries to slap them away again. Then Dongju comes out from the other end so the father is all like, what is going on? Where is my daughter in law??? Arrest them both! You have to explain to us how things changed!
They start to approach Dongju and Nokdu with their swords out. But then the polcie run up to find out what the trouble is. The father in law says it is a family issue. The police ask how they can have this many armed men and say it is a family issue! Arrest them!
The police men arrest all the men and we see Yool-moo walking up. It apepars that Yool-moo has a lot more power than he lets on. He nods and smiles at the father-in-law as he walks past.
Then we cut to Nokdu and Dongju holding hands. They didn’t even notice it themselves and quickly hop their hands away from each other.
Dongju ends up walking with Yool-moo and Nokdu walks with the daughter in law. Yool-moo tells Dongju and they look like good friends. Dongju looks a bit jealous because she thinks that this is Nokdu’s true love.
Nokdu whispers to the widow and asks if it really all worked? She says that Yool-moo believed her because she never left the house after getting married so he didn’t know what she looked like. So Yool-moo still thinks that Nokdu is the daughter in law.
Later on that night, Nokdu and Dongju settle in to sleep for the night. But they are both awkward. He asks why she met with Yool-moo. She asks why he cares? You were with your lover. He says he was just curious, isn’t it okay to be curious? She throws her pillow t him and calls him a pervert. He sighs and looks off exhausted.
The neighbor/master and his daughter walk around a market in Seoul. He tells her that Seoul is so big, how are you going to find Nokdu? She says that with hr will there is a way and drags her father away as if she is super strong.
Cut to the assassins’s secret Seoul branch office inside a Gisaeng house. Nokdu walks in like a noble man and put a scar on his face to preten like he is the assassin he made up. He tells someone inside this office that the people he was following went into the widow town. Then he gives this man some alcohol.
The man drunkenly asks who he is. Nokdu says that he followed them in and his face became like this fighting a widow. One of the female assassins hears this. okdu notices her and then asks the man if he knows anything about female assassins? the man is stupid drunk and doesn’t know. The woman assassin sneaks off so Nokdu follows.
Inside the city, the fighting master and his daughter continue to walk around. She is still on the hunt for Nokdu.
Meanwhile, the assassin woman shows the image to another man and says that she is sure that this is that guy, he still has the scar. We need to focus our people on him. We don’t have too many now. They leave and we see that the father and daughter were hiding inside a barrel to overhear the conversation. They think that they were talking about Nokdu.
Elsewhere, Nokdu’s surrogate father and his brother are eating in the masters village. But then more assassins come and start to fight outside their doors. They nee to escape! they start to run away, but the sons stomach still bothers him. They decide that they need to separate.
The father says that he will lead them away and they can meet in a cave that Master Hwang told them about. the father heads off. The son heads off as well, but then sees one of the assassin women. But this woman gets killed by an assassin in all black. We don’t know who this person is.
While walking around the palace, the King sees a dead hog on the yard. Someone placed it there. One of the Kings guards says that they heard that shaman go inside and outside of Daebi’s place. What do you think it means? This is a dead pig for the year you were born.
The King tells them to investigate it! he storms off. The Kings friend Heo Yoon looks highly stressed.
ASSASSINS AT WIDOW VILLAGE
The assassins chat about Nokdu when a woman comes in and says that Yeon Geun is calling them!
Yeun Geum is outside in a pergola area and happily says that this is a welcome party for the return of Nokdu! The assassins think that he is just using them for the party, not inviting them to the party. Plus, she might not come back today.
Yeon Geun says that she is coming back today! She does not say one thing and mean another from her mouth!
Cut to the woods where we see Nokdu and Dongju walking, when they stop and look ahead. Up ahead is Yool-moo with two horses for them to ride. But tht means that Dongju will have to pick a horse to ride on. She looks back and forth between Nokdu and Dongju. Yool-moo tells her that she is going to the Gisaeng house so she can ride with him. Nokdu says that a grown woman cannot ride with a man.
He pulls out the daughter card and tells her that she should ride with her mother. Dongju sighs and walks up, she reaches her hand up to one of the men.
Then we cut to her riding on Yool-moo’s horse with him. Nokdu is so upset. He grumpily rides behind them and then has an idea. Nokdu yells and we hear a thud. They both turn around to see him sulking on the ground after falling off the horse.
Cut to Yool-moo reluctantly carrying Nokdu on his horse and Dongju riding on a horse of her own.
Cut to the gisaeng house whre we see Dongju riding up and Yeon Geum looking at them in anticipation. But then we see Yool Moo riding up with a sleeping Nokdu holding onto him and drooling on his back. he is so annoyed. Yeon is so upset and blubberingly shocked.
Yool-moo hops off and holds his hand out to Nokdu. DOngju also holds her hand out to Nokdu to help her off. He takes Yool-moo’s hand so he carries her off of the horse. Dongju rolls her eyes and nokdu quietly mouths, Omo. Yeon Geum drops his flowers.
The three go to the party that Yeon Geum made for Nokdu. The assassins ask her if her inlaw gave her anything. Nokdu nods and shows them the contents of hr bag which should have the golden elephant in it.
They go somewhere to talk and ask Nokdu how she was able to manage? They were worried about her. Nokdu says it is a secret and asks if she can work with them now? One of the ladies says that they are almost at that point, so long as she is not a fake widow then it is fine.
Nokdu and the assassins go back to the party where Yeon Geum drunkenly asks Yool-moo why he is hitting on widow Nokdu! I love her! I am nothing without her! Dongju accidentally wastes something on her dress because she is also drunk, so Yool-moo goes over to help her. Her friend tells her to stop drinking. When she drinks she says everything that is in her heart.
Dongju smiles and says that is true, she knows that her feet smell! haha. then seh looks at Nokdu and smiles. Nokdu gets so nervous and stands as she asks her daughter to go home. The gisaeng friend asks Nokdu what she thinks about Yool-moo, tell them. Nokdu says she doesn’t like anyone but Dongju points at him and says that he likes someone!
So Nokdu runs to her and says that her daughter is so drunk so she is speaking in gibberish! But the gisaens all ask, who does Nokdu like? Is it Yoolmoo or not? Dongju says, my husband likes….
But then the little daughter comes in and yells, HUSBAND? Nokdu looks around and sees his tiny future bride and his martial arts master. They are looking around for Nokdu.
Nokdu looks at them and his stress goes up. Everyone sees them because the girl is yelling for her husband. So Nokdu tries to take their attention away and says that he likes Yool-moo! Because he is a real man and I am just a woman.
Yool-moo is all like, um, but widow…
Nokdu walks over to him and says sorry, then gives him a big kiss in front of everyone. The little girl sees this and breaks an apple with her bare hands. Yeon Geun passes out. Dongju laughs. then she stands and drunkenly says, I – I LIKE – ….
END PART ONE
Morning comes in he gisaeng house. Dongju is waking up and thinks that she said, I LIKE….but she wakes up before we know what she said. she thinks it si just a dream and curls over to sleep.
But then a tiny little hand hits her inn the face so she turns around to see a little sleeping Aengdoo. She hops up thinking, um, no no no, what is this? Then she sees Nokdu also sleeping.
Dongju runs outside to throw up. The three avengers are there talking about how it was such a big scene , mother and daughter were fighting over the same man! tsk tsk. Dongju holds her hands over her ear.
Inside the tiny house, Nokdu tries to get the little bride to call him eunnie, not husband or big brother, you have to call me sister. She says okay brother. He has a little fit and tells her that she has to call him eunnie, eunnie, eunnie and he kicks his feet in the air.
He finally has to say that if they find out that he is a boy then they will kill him! She is all like, oh hell no! So he tells her that she has to call him eunnie! She smiles and says eunnie.
Nokdu goes outside and talks to the master. The master says that his brother and father are fine, they already sent a letter that he will be back with them. Hwang asks, so if the girl knows that you are a guy, what did it mean when she said I Like, I Like. Was it you or that other guy?
Nokdu asks what he thinks? Hwang thinks that if it is him then she has very low tastes. Nokdu says that she was just drunk! Then Yool Moo sees him on accident and quickly runs away. Nokdu tkes off running toward him. They are both running so fast.
Yeon Geum sees them and says, why not me!
They run through the gisaeng Jip and all over the area. They are so fast. Everyone sees them and thinks that Nokdu is crazy! Yool Moo keeps running away and finally gets to a spot where he makes a wrong turn and is about to fall into the pond. he reaches out to grab Nokdu on instinct and Nokdu reaches out to grab him, but he sees Nokdu and decides to not grab her and folds his arms like a vampire to fall backward into the pond.
Yool Moo gets thoroughly soaked. He hops out of the pond and is still trying to get away from Nokdu, but she pins him against a tree. Yoolmoo says somthing so Nokdu asks what he said.
He asks when she fell in love? Nokdu asks, what? He asks, when they were on the horse together? No, it doens’t matter when it started. You know who I like. okdu asks who? He tells her that she is the friend, no mother of the woman that I like so just take me like that.
Nokdu asks what he likes about Dongju so much. He says he likes her because he likes her. Nokdu asks how you know that you like someone? Yoolmoo asks how you can’t know? You miss them when you don’t see them and when you see them you are happy and you worry about tiny things. it is like a cough that you cannot hide.
He then mentions that she kissed him in front of everyone because she cannot hide her love. Nokdu says, okay. Yool moo asks how come she has never liked anyone yet? Nokdu says she has liked people many many times! So he will keep her love to herselv. Sorry for my rudeness, don’t worry about me. She pats him on the shoulder and walks off.
While walking back in, Gisaeng Mae Hwasue bumps into Nokdu aggressively and another gisaeng throws water on him. Nokdu sighs and keeps walking.
He walks all the way to where Dongju is, it is nightfall now. She is sitting on a little bridge so Nokdu happily sits next to her. She asks if he is laughing? he kind of says no. She looks like she wants to hit him and asks if he knows how people are treating her? Why didn’t you just quiet that little kid or something? And why did that little girl call you honey/husband?
Nokdu says that she is his neighbor and thinks that they are engaged. But of course it is not true. Dongju thinks it is an arranged marriage. So you have a widow and you are engaged, wow, you do so much.
Nokdu asks her straight, who is the person you like. You can’t hide it. I don’t know if I am stupid or if you are a genius.
She says that she was just drunk. She says, of course, who do you think it is? If you were me who do you think I would pick? That pervert who likes a widow and is already engaged? She sulks.
He thinks that is true and gets up to leave. He tells her to leave together, but she tells him to leave, I am not going with you. He walks away.
Inside the little house, Aengdoo wakes with a start and sees Nokdu sitting sadle against the wall. He says that it isn’t him, he just asked her because she talked about all that nonsense. Aengdoo asks what he is mumbling about this early in the morning. Noku can’t even believe that it is morning and yells, YOU STAYED OUTSIDE?
Cut to Dongju sleeping in her cave. She wakes up groggily and stretches her arms out as if every bone is creaking. Then she starts to fold up her things.
Nokdu waits for her and peeks outside where we see Aengdoo leading her back to the house. Inside, they all eat breakfast quietly. But then Nokdu and Dongju want to eat the same egg so they look at each other. Aengdoo gives the egg to Nokdu lovingly.
Nokdu reminds her not to call him husband or he is dead, remember? Dongju asks if she even knows what marriage is? She says she knows, you eat together and play together. Dongju tells her to find a nice kind person when she grows up, not a pervert.
Aengdoo thinks that Nokdu is the best. Nokdu tells Dongju to eat, eat. But Dongju just gets annoyed and leaves.
Later on that night, Nokdu tries to sleep but Dongju is not there again, so she can’t sleep. But then he hears the ringing sound which is a summoning sound for the shaman. Everyone around the village starts to make themselves scarce and turn off all their lights. The assassins all go to the mountain meeting place. Nokdu puts on his all black gear and goes as well.
At the same time, the Queen of the country is pulled from her room. She yells that she does not know them and does not know about a coup or anything! People are blaming me for something that I did not do! The guard tells them to take her to the royal jail.
Elsewhere, another man rides a horse with determination somewhere.
In the palace, the little prince is also arrested. Politicians watch this and wonder if this is okay. The people that oppose this will be against you. One of the men says that he can take care of himself, don’t worry.
In the woods, the assassins greet the man that was riding on his horse. Then, we see them all leaving. Nokdu watches and then runs to the meeting place when they are all gone.
At the same time, Dongju wakes up in her cave and thinks that she cannot sleep there anymore. She needs to sleep comfortably in her house. So she leaves to head to her house.
In the woods, we see that one of the men is Heo Yeon, the Kings friend. He talks to one of his guard who asks why this happened when he was not in the palace. Heo Yeon says that the King picked the day that he was not there. he will head out first. Go borrow a horse from the gisaeng house and follow me.
Nokdu sees this conversation and wonders why the King is involved in their issued.
FLASHBACK 20 YEARS AGO
In a flashback, we see the King holding his baby and asking why it had to be today. Then the father runs up and looks at the King. The mother is crying.
Heo Yeon is also there kneeling. The King says that this unfortunate event did not happen. They are both dead.
Heo Yeon runs to find Yoon Jeo who has the kid. he tells Yoon Jeo that he buried the Kid and I killed you. Lets live like that.
Flash ahead several years to when their mother was sick and the father had to find medicine. Someone on the mainland saw Yoon-jeo and tells Heo Yoon about it. Heo Yoon tells his assassin that they need to go to an island and kill someone. Otherwise the King will find them and their big plan will end.
In the present, Nokdu continues to walk back while wondering what the King has to do with all of this. Then he sees DOngju’s shoes outside the house. He hurries inside.
In the woods, the messenger sees a dead person , it is the person who gave the news to Heo Yoon.
Inside their house, Nokdu sees that Dongju is curled up in bed. He asks her if she wants him to turn on the light? She says no. He asks why she is afraid of the dark? She says she is not. And it is against the rules to turn on the lights.
But then we see a flashback of him waking up every time she had a bad dream. Her dreams are related to being buried alive when the guards thought she was dead.
She wakes up to a lit up room. Nokdu covered all the windows so they wont get in trouble. She tells him not to do those kinds of things for her. He asks why he shouldn’t, is it because it is only for people who like each other worry about each other and care about each other?
She says yes, it is a relationship like the one between you and your widow. He says that he can’t hide it anymore, the relationship~. But she quickly tells him that she will just go to bed and curls up to sleep again.
They song starts to play as he looks at her curled up to sleep. He hears a voice over that says that you cannot hide love like a cough. Nokdu thinks that he is in big trouble as he sits there under the lights.
in the morning, Aengdoo continues to sleep and Nokdu has fallen asleep in his sitting position. Dongju is awake and looking at him. She mutters to herself that she decided not to do useless things, she shouldn’t do it. She bows her head as she looks at him sleeping.
Later on, Nokdu opens the door to their house to see the Ajumma Avengers happily playing outside in their courtyard area. Aengdoo is also happily playing with them. Nokdu comes out to sit with them and asks what happened.
They say that it is Dano! Dano time! (Dano is a traditional holiday in Korea). Nokdu asks what they do during Dano? The Ajumma Avengers say that the gather edible plants and wash their hair with special plants and young men and women, you know! They swing and share their hearts! Nothing to do with us but…Dano Dano! Dano Dano!
(Dano day is famous for when women swing on a swing).
Nokdu runs to find DOngju and tells her that it is Dano day, would you like to swing? I have something to tell you. She looks at him seriously and says that she does not want to hear it. He asks why not? She says it is because it is useless. He asks if sheknows what he wants to say? She says yes, it is super noticeable. He asks if she doesn’t want to hear about it because of Yool-moo? She nods, yes.
She turns and walks away looking sad. He looks sad as he watches her leave.
Elsewhere, Yool-moo cooks Yookjang and feeds it to his bodyguard. Then Aengdoo comes up for some. She opens up her mouth widely so Yool-moo gives it to her and tells her to eat slowly. She smiles and does a happy dance. then we cut to an empty plate, she has eaten all the Yookjang. Yool-moo is all like, um, can you eat more? She says yes, she is not full yet. Also, can you pack some for me? I want to share it with my brother~ I mean eunnie! Yool-moo is suspicious, you said eunnie?
Meanwhile, Nokdu is eating with the assassins and sulking. They try to tell her that she still has a chance, it is not over yet, don’t be too depressed. Nokdu asks, really? It is not over yet? They say that this is why they are drinking with her now, are you giving up first?
Nokdu nods and says that this is true, she should not give up yet, even if she stops her. He stands up determined. They ask what she is talking about and then think that they should wash their hair in the special plant water.
But Nokdu says he will walk to the town. Cut to her trying to walk straight and the assassins looking at her telling her to walk straight. Nokdu drunkenly says that she is walking straight, but then falls from a tiny bride and into the dirty creek.
He gets home and tells Dongju that he will go bath. While bathing he thinks all about Dongju from the first time he saw her as a woman at the gisaeng jip when she cut her hair. She fills his mind so he can’t really take a bath.
Later on, Yool-moo walks with Aengdoo back to the village. She tells him that he can’t go inside this village because men are not allowed. The girl talks to herself and says that this is why she can’t live with her father or her oraboni that became my eunnie? Yool-moo pauses as he opens the gate.
Inside, Nokdu walks to talk to DOngju with his shirt off, he is all wet. He tells her that he does not have a widow that he likes. She sits up and asks if he lied to her? Why are you telling me the truth now? He says, it is because I like you.
She pauses and says, I told you…I~
He kneels in front of her.
ND – You don’t like him, you say that you like him and it is true for everyone else…but to me, I dont’ agree with it.
DJ – What?
ND – I can’t hide it, I couldn’t. You never coughed in front of him
DJ – What are you talking about?
ND – He always looks at you, but you don’t look at him. You look at me….isn’t that true?
DJ – I don’t want to talk about it. Why are you asking me those things. You dont know anything.
ND – I dont ‘know anything – so – .
He leans in and kisses her quickly. She accepts the kiss and blinks several times as she thinks.
ND – So tell me….
He touches her cheek lightly and holds her face softly with his hands.
Then he leans in to kiss her again.
But the door swings open, it is Yool-Moo who is looking at them like the fire of anger is raging inside him.
Nokdu and Dongju both look at themselves in this situation and then look at Yool-moo, completely shocked and apologetic.
This show is probably my favorite on TV right now. I love how it always keeps me guessing and manages to have fresh moments of excitement where it continues to keep the momentum of the show chugging forward. The story never drags, it is always interesting to watch but it isn’t an overwhelming watch, they know where to put their resting scenes interspersed with fast paced scenes. I love it so much.
On top of that, I love how Dongju knows that Nokdu likes her! Usually the heroine is so clueless to the point of driving me insane with how stupid she is. But in this case she knows he likes her but does not want him to say it because it could complicate things with their relationship and with just moving forward because she would have to admit that she likes or lie and say that she doesn’t so it would be awkward either way and then where would they go from there? It is a scary proposition just because love is a scary thing. *sigh* Swoon, just swoon.
Nokdu – Are you guys going somewhere far away?
Assassins – We have a 60th birthday party to go to and to also have fun.
VO – They will never guess that the kitchen women are assassins
Cheon – It is in a hurry! ASAP!
*Nokdu rides off on his horse and then we cut to a battle with the assassins and guards*
ND – it is so hot
Kim Suk – Widow kim?
ND – Yes, Cheon sent me here.
VO – Maybe you are up to something again.
YJ – Nice to see you *holds sword to Heo Yoon’s neck*
DJ – Now I can leave
ND – Don’t leave, don’t leave
DJ – Dont nag me
ND – I told you, I will continue to nag, so don’t leave.