Female Prime Minister: Legend of Lu Zhen Episode 18 Recap

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This is perhaps one of my most FAVORITE episodes in this series. I don’t want to say too much except  that the good parts were magnificently done. Some of it was slower than turtles crawling on a hot sunday but the rest made up for it.

Lu Zhen is busily preparing new year gifts for wives and noblewomen, this year the requests made were all for jewelry (Royal Concubine’s doing). Everyone in the treasury is running around trying to send gifts to various households and noblewomen.

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An Order from the emperor comes asking Lu Zhen to prepare jade bracelets for some noblewomen. Lu Zhen complies and brings it to the Emperor’s residence. A Lady Official tells her that the Emperor is at the Royal Concubine’s palace and Lu Zhen sends the jade bracelets there.

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Upon receiving the bracelets, the Royal Concubine smiles evilly and tells Wang Shang Yi that they’ve got Lu Zhen now.

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Wang Shang Yi goes to find Lu Zhen, asking if Lu Zhen knew what she has done? Lu Zhen says that she doesn’t. She makes Lu Zhen recite the palace rules which states that it is very unlucky to send Jade out as a gift at years’ end. Since it is an offense punishable by death (the Chinese really have a terribly superstitious side) Lu Zhen tries to explain that it was an order from the emperor, but the eunuch who had given her the order shows up to say that he didn’t do it. Lu Zhen realizes that she has been set up.

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In order for no one else to be punished Lu Zhen accepts the punishment. She is ordered to kneel for twelve hours in the snow.

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On such a cold day, even three or four hours can kill. The Eunuch who carried the false order stands and watches her, kicking her whenever she falls down.

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Lu Zhen began to weaken and faints several times. Finally she falls down, the Eunuch kicks her a couple more times and leaves to have dinner.

Screen Shot 2013-07-07 at 9.58.11 PM        Screen Shot 2013-07-07 at 10.01.05 PM Shen Bi takes this opportunity to also come and kick her, saying that she’s happy that Lu Zhen ended up like this.

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Dan Niang sees what’s happening and runs to find Gao Zhan. Only Gao Zhan, the Emperor and the Royal Concubine are at a state dinner that lasts for hours. Dan Niang is unable to find anyone.

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When Gao Zhan and Yuan Lu leave to go to see Lu Zhen they pass the place where Lu Zhen was kneeling, it’s been hours and its nightfall, so they don’t see her.

Screen Shot 2013-07-07 at 10.03.59 PM Screen Shot 2013-07-07 at 10.04.11 PM Only when a maid tells them that the path is blocked do they turn and Gao Zhan spies a snow-covered heap and asks who that is.

Screen Shot 2013-07-07 at 10.04.34 PM   Screen Shot 2013-07-07 at 10.04.42 PM   The maid replies that she doesn’t know, only that it’s a lady official from the treasury being punished by the Royal Concubine.

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Gao Zhan’s eyes widen and he flies over the fence and grabs Lu Zhen. He screams her name and Yuan Lu stutters that Lu Zhen is practically frozen.

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Gao Zhan scoops up Lu Zhen and is about to take her to his palace when the Eunuch on guard comes back. He yells for them to stop only to realize who it is and kneels. Gao Zhan gives the Eunuch a vicious kick when the Eunuch tries to stop him and half-runs with Lu Zhen to his palace.

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Gao Zhan grabs as many blankets as he can while yelling orders for a doctor and hot water and soup.

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The doctor arrives and takes Lu Zhen’s heartbeat. He shakes his head and Gao Zhan glares at him intensely, telling him to save her no matter what.

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The doctor uses a needle to wake Lu Zhen up momentarily and she tells Gao Zhan to take her back, she doesn’t want the Royal Concubine to take revenge on him, before fainting again. The doctor tells Gao Zhan he should leave while he treats the patient. A determined, angry look floods Gao Zhan’s eyes.

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The Emperor and Royal Concubine are at a private banquet, where the Royal Concubine is manipulating the overstruck Emperor into allowing her to become Empress when Gao Zhan asks for permission to enter. They are shocked by the controlled yet wildly angry expression.

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Gao Zhan asks the Royal Concubine if she had given the order for Lu Zhen to kneel for hours, the Emperor is shocked.

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Royal Concubine says yes, so what if she did.

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Gao Zhan asks her in a tight voice to take it back. She says no, she’s got the right to punish her subordinates.

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Gao Zhan says “I have one thing to tell you” and he slams down on the table where the Royal Concubine is sitting, scaring her back into the chair.

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“Lu Zhen, is, in my life, the most important woman, if you have anything against her, you’ll bring it to me! Never touch her again!”

Screen Shot 2013-07-07 at 10.11.27 PM Screen Shot 2013-07-07 at 10.11.31 PM With that he leaves, leaving a devastated and shocked Royal Concubine.

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Gao Zhan is looking after Lu Zhen and tells his maid that she’ll be living in the main bedroom while he’ll be in the side bedroom. He tells the maid that no one is to know that she has been here, no one.

Screen Shot 2013-07-07 at 10.12.28 PM Screen Shot 2013-07-07 at 10.12.56 PM  The maids are not allowed to talk to Lu Zhen too much if she wakes up and under no circumstances are they to reveal who Gao Zhan really is. Gao Zhan promises the sleeping Lu Zhen that he’s never going to allow her to suffer again.

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The emperor learns what happened while the Royal Concubine processes what Gao Zhan has said. She wonders to herself, “If Lu Zhen is the most important woman in his life, then what am I?”

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Criticism – Yu Zhen doesn’t know how to end an episode at a good point to save his life. So, while there is an extra scene about the younger versions of Gao Zhan , Gao Yan (the current Emperor, and Huan Yun (the Royal Concubine), I refuse to end a good episode with a stupid little add on that should have been part of the next episode. Either commit to the story or make the episode longer. So I ended on a relevant note and I promise that the little itty bit that you’re probably seeing is going to be in the next recap.

Gao Zhan, has the most expressive eyes ever. I am fully convinced that he can shoot lightning, cook a pizza, or make a girl fall in love by adjusting the intensity in them.

22 responses

      • There are a few instances where GZ impressed me, and since I tend to gravitate towards big romantic gestures, I was sold. I actually want him to unleash that anger some more lol.

      • cannot post my own reply today, have no idea why but it is driving me bonkers, so I will just drag my reply under Yours, dramatictealeaves, if You allow?

        what was missing in this episode to make ma look like a satisfied cat near the bowl full of cream was the sentence “touch even one hair of her, missy and I will definately kill you”… that would send me to the seventh heaven, with all that subdued anger and glaring and funny red strings attached to a very pissed man.

        Overall, I liked the episode (minus the miraculous one needle treatment…. and maybe the power of the imperial doctor that is just being summoned to people who have no pulse…hm). I wrote about previous episode that it was full of people delusions. Here we have the real thing, that hits you with the power of tons of bricks. Lu Zhen is in a place were people are being killed for sport and fun, where fake edicts are being carried by unimportant people who will gladly kick you if you fall from grace, falling from grace is so easy as snapping the fingers, your position and safety depends only on the backing you have. pretty scary place, this palace. the royal concubine was for a moment like those from Empress in the palace. she blew it unfortunately, when started to cower under the glare of Gao Zhan – who wouldn’t, anyway – but I liked the claws she showed and am willing to see some more in the future. One of my fav episodes is coming up soon so I will be lurking around, hoping that I can reply to Your next recap in a normal way… 🙂

  1. I liked it and yet felt not quite satisfied, like a cat that was promissed a small plate of cream and got one full bowl of milk instead. satysfying enough, but it is still not the promissed nirvana one should get. I rewinded Gao Zhan’s rage many many maaaaany times just to smirk at the shock on the Royal Concubine or the heat coming off from those blazin eyes of mayhem, but still…. where is the famous “move one hair on her head and I will kill you”, huh???? that would be a real shocker, right? right???
    Still, the episode was great (despite some moments when one ponders how many miracles could one do with an accupuncture needle…or how a handy imperial doctor gets summoned like he was just around the corner…), bringing totally different feelings than the previous one. no delusions this time, but pure reality hits you like a load of bricks. this is a place, where your life means nothing at all, where you are only being pampered when you have mighty supporters on your back, where everyone, including mere servants will kick you if you fall, where fake edicts are being passed around like bitch slaps. it brings back the atmosphere of “Empress in the palace” and I love this show to pieces. so, bring it on and show me some claws!

    • Lu Zhen does have do a good job of portraying the cruel abandon of reason and rule of law in the palace. Have you seen Zhen Huan? People in china say that it’s very realistic in exhibiting the women’s conniving and cunning nature in the grab for the throne. I think that in some ways, Zhen Huan is the even more vicious drama. I loved parts of it and then it made me lose faith in humanity and goodwill.

      • I thought for a second I either expanded the reply quota for a month or was banned from the site 😉 …nothing that a good portion of my new addiction called Cuoxi dian yuan yang cannot cure ;). Love the Big Brother and his wifey to pieces now. Per chance, did You see it?

  2. is Cuo/xi dian yuan yang good? hmmm…. lets see… we have a towering, iceblock stoic hero that’s only reason to breathe is to get revenge on those who kileed his parents…we have his two brothers with the youngest one playing pranks on his brother’s “wifey” and the second one being more reasonable and calm and playing this wooden box with strings… (snore….). we have a born out of wedlock heroine (tiny as a firefly in comparison to the iceblock… ) who has to pose as her lokalike sister and get married to the hero while her father plots the demise of all three brothers. add some sparks between the iceblock and a tinkerbell, iceblock’s fobia of fire and tinkerbell’s swollen lips after sucking out the snake poisone out of the iceblock (yes, you read correctly… and if you see the scene… oh my) and you have a drama where I was crying my guts out at final episodes. I am now on the second part of the drama, concentrating more on the relationships of other brothers but hey.. in this part they have a girl posing as a man, being engaged to the iceblock figure even before her birth, and a courtesan with a very dangerous admire on her side, that will be somewhat involved with the third brother (courtesan, not her admirer…) …. aaaaaaaand there are of course the main protagonists from the first part, with loads of situation where tinkerbell gets saved by her not so happy husband thus leading to some spanking in the alcove after the rescuing act, with the big smirks given by the brothers while the heroine is being carried away under the arm of the iceblock.
    I LOVE IT 🙂

    • *killed his parents, *lookalike, *admirer – this happens when you are too excited and do not pay attention to your writing… I am in the middle of screeing the second part of the drama and I am in love with the love interest of the second brother. this it the heroine we are always missing… equal to men and equal to women. I love her to pieces.
      so dramatictealeavies, I dare You to watch it. I DARE YOU. and then I want some nice recaps because going back and forth between viki and my raw copy of the show is damaging my brain ;). especially when there are scenes like a man going to an ancient drug store to buy a medicine for the menstruation….or a protagonist of the first serieis building up a suspition that her brother-in-law likes men… I just… cannot bear it…. 🙂 hope you can join me soon in this crazy, fabulous and out of the mind drama 😉

      • Wow, such a passionate response! Okay, I will watch it (I have to find it first). When I’m done with LZ or get to the point when I have the recaps done, I’ll go and take a gander. It sounds amazing, so it’s now on the top of my list of dramas to watch. Remind me periodically because I have the short attention span of that dog in Up.

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