Mane of Glory #22: Arthdal Chronicles Ep 11&12

It’s the end of season 2 (felt like season 2 just started) and it is time to get ready to bid our favorite characters goodbye til September. Find out where we stand as we head into our mane of glory hiatus.

Tanya’s kidnapped adventures

Is it just me or does it seem that Tanya is getting passed around like a hot potato? Everyone gets a piece of her, except Eun Sum who is the character we most want to be reunited with our Tribal leader. There is one point in this week’s story where she is found by the nice girl, kidnapped by Mihol’s goons, escapes but then gets caught by Tagon’s goons, saved by the Neanthals only to be caught once more by Mihol’s minions. The girl can’t catch a break.

Clkytta: Tanya just can’t get a break! She’s kidnapped from her kidnappers. It’s a total power play with her as the pawn between the factions.

Drama Geek: After I stopped laughing at how many times she was tossed from person to person, I realized that she actually needed this to happen. She was able to piece together even more of the political puzzle, while also becoming aware that Neanthals still exist and see that there are other people on her side.

Kmuse: I agree with Drama Geek. She isn’t a genius tactician like Eun Sum and Saya so she needed this to understand the positions of all the various factions. I just think that a bit longer season would have given time for this to seem more natural and not as rushed.

MiataMama: Seriously, how many times can a girl get kidnapped?! I was surprised at how she handled the whole series of events with such composure. Even though she’s been one step behind this whole time, she’s starting to see that she’s very integral to the big picture and now is her chance to pull ahead.

Kdrama Jen: Hi! It’s me. I have all these thoughts bottled up from missing the past two weeks. So, what I want to say is I can see how this kidnapping of Tanya helps move the plot forward, just like Eun Seom’s captivity and debasement as a slave is going to bring about the character growth we need for the rest of the story. I just don’t like seeing it. It’s hard to watch. Although, I did like that Tanya maintained her wits and spirit.

Neanthal’s need a lady

The Neanthal survivors have been circling around the storyline the last few episodes and we finally know why they are in Arthdal. Is it to get revenge? Save the half Neanthal hottie twins? Something significant? Nope. They are here to find out if the younger sister wants to go off with them and help repopulate the world with Neanthal babies. She declines their offer, but asks to keep in contact in case she changes her mind.

Clkytta: I wasn’t completely surprised that little sis is a Neanthal, but it does present an interesting dilemma. She has several hunky Neanthals to choose from but will she choose one? I would!

Kmuse: I am underwhelmed by this story arc.

Drama Geek: I totally want Neanthal babies. I think the one who saved her will end up winning her hand in the end. And even though Kmuse is underwhelmed, I felt the writers were just setting up a story arc for the final season.

MiataMama: Well, that’s a lot of pressure! LOL! I’m hopeful that there’s more to this story arc next season, because I too am rooting for Neanthal babies. However, their way of life, which pretty much boils down to every-Neanthal-for-himself, doesn’t really lead me to think that they will be involved in the resolution of the main plot line.

Kdrama Jen: I actually think the Neanthal way of supporting free choice may be better than the hierarchical model they use in Arthdal. The Saram would likely just force the last female of their kind to become a baby factory. I think they show more humanity than some of the humans.

Tagon’s spinning in circles… or is he?

Tagon’s plans for ultimate power keeps getting derailed by Mihol & Asa Ron’s scheming. Poor guy just keeps being thwarted. But is that going to keep our luscious locks hottie down? Not a chance. With his theme song humming through his lips, he outwits the older leaders once again. When it comes to Tagon, it is always one step back then two steps forward as he does the politicking tango.

Clkytta: Since Taealha’s been captured by her father it puts Tagon in a bad spot. Not only has his lover been taken, but several of his regular avenues of information have been cut off.

Drama Geek: I find myself cursing at the writer for making me care so much about what happens to Tagon. It doesn’t help that Tanya’s fate is currently tied to his success.

MiataMama: Way to go writers, you totally have me rooting for the bad guy here – I can’t help but want him to come out ahead. But it’s only a matter of time before Tagon’s master-minding runs its course and hits a dead end. Until then, I will continue to enjoy watching him and his ability to plot his way out of almost everything!

Kmuse: I hope that Tagon continues to think ahead of his enemies. He truly is a joy to watch and not completely evil…at least not in season 2.

Kdrama Jen: I may not like Tagon, but I certainly am impressed by his intelligence and ability to figure things out.

Taealha’s deal

Mihol and Asa Ron have framed Taealha as a heretic and threaten to cut off her feet and make her a beggar unless she gives up Tagon. Taealha tries to convince her father that Tagon is the better bet but meets with little success. For some reason, Mihol hates Tagon and refuses to support the upstart leader. This leave’s Taealha with a dilemma. Stay with Tagon and possibly go down, or be back under the thumb of her abusive father. Whichever way she chooses she will look gorgeous while doing it. I can’t think of another person who would successfully look gorgeous while standing in dank cave water.

Clkytta: Taealha is just beautiful. I love that she has a spine of steel and she’s more cunning than most of the men she’s surrounded by. I really hope that she stands by her man. I can’t help but root for Tagon and Taealha.

Drama Geek: I kept yelling at the screen for the two lovers to just trust each other. What is nice is that we see that from an early age, they knew who they both were, and laid all their cards on the table. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen two characters better suited for one another. Whatever punishment they are given by the end, I hope they receive it together

MiataMama: I wasn’t a huge fan of Taealha, in the beginning. But now. . . I’m totally cheering her on as she chooses Tagon’s side, over her dad. There’s no happy ending ahead for this power couple, but whatever happens, I’m confident they will face their epic take-down together.

Kdrama Jen: Oh, Taealha may be my favorite character. She is smarter than all of them. Is it creepy that I felt oodles of chemistry between her and Saya a few episodes back? I want her to ditch Tagon for his adopted son. She just can’t make him call her “mother.”

Kmuse: I think I am firmly team Taealha. I hope she makes it to the end and rules it all.

Double crossed

Mihol eventually agrees to support Taealha’s plans with Tagon. Or does he? Without her knowledge, Mihol betrays his daughter and plans to use Tanya as a fall guy. But Tagon and Taealha are smarter than he is, and they know that the double-cross is coming. Along with Tanya, they use his greed to get him and Asa Ron right where they want them.

Clkytta: All the little intricacies of Tagon and Taealha’s relationship continue to surprise me. They have a deep understanding of what makes each other tick and it’s interesting to see the secret messages they send to each other.

Drama Geek: Taealha will never trust her father again, he has proven over and over that he doesn’t care about her at all. While Tagon constantly will do everything in his power to save her, and will only betray her if his death is the alternative.

Kmuse: I’m still kind of cheering for these two. Their minds are just so brilliant that i can’t help but be drawn towards them.

Kdrama Jen: I can’t help it. I am team Taealha.

MiataMama: Mihol is a jerk. Admittedly, I had a little trouble keeping up with the double crossing and those little details that kept Tagon and Taealha on the same page through it all. But I’m thankful for their unspoken teamwork in this particular situation. Power couple, for the win!


You would think that Eun Sum was not the focus of this drama at all if you only had season 2 to go on. We find him, once again, in the slave mines as he works out his issues. Finally, he decides that it is time to escape with his fellow mining slaves. They create a ruse which has the owners thinking they are all dead of the plague, then the bribe their way back to the top. Thank goodness Eum Sum is out (hopefully) and we have a chance for him to step up in season 3.

Clkytta: I was really getting tired of Eum Sum being dejected and vacant eyed. I’ve been a dedicated Eun Sum fan while all my fellow fangirls have been mooning over Saya, so I need him to step up and show us what he’s got!

Drama Geek: All the scenes of the slaves where hard, but they culminated into such a touching scene that will be the foundation for season 3. Eun Sum may have been dormant, but he’s bonded with men from many tribes. They are all brothers. With the loss of Sateunik, they will forever be entangled. When they put their hands together and listed out their names and tribes, I got chills. At no time have the people in this drama felt more like the future of Korea than in that moment.

Kmuse: Can’t wait for Eun Sum to step it up. I thought his storyline was really well done despite it not being as prominent in season 2.

MiataMama: Clkytta, you’re not the only one who has been lamenting the lack of Eun Sum screen time! The rest of the fangirls can keep their pretty and broken Saya. Meanwhile, I’m excited to see that Eun Sum’s resolve has returned and that his character is finally ‘resurfacing’ (lame pun totally intended) in this story!!!

Kdrama Jen: As I said before, I understand WHY we need all of this to happen for the sake of the story arc, but I am glad we seem to be headed toward an Eun Sum reboot. I want to see him fiery eyed and fierce!

Bell Hunting

Because they think that Tanya doesn’t know where the all-important magical bell is, Asa Ron gives her permission to find the item. With the threat that if she fails then she will have her limbs cut off. No pressure here at all. As most of us had guessed, the special dance and throwing of stones, that had been passed down from mother to daughter comes into play. Tanya dances like the champ she is and finds the magical bell. All hail priestess Tanya. I can’t wait to watch her flex her newly discovered political muscles next season.

Clkytta: When Tanya remembered all the pieces to the dance of her ancestors, it was really emotional. Everything that her tribe did was so they could return to their home again. They didn’t understand why they had to do it exactly the same every generation, but their willingness to maintain the standards and traditions paid off for Tanya.

Drama Geek: I LOVED this scene. Until now, we’d only seen Tanya fail at performing this dance properly. But they wove in how confident she has become with the touching scenes with her mother. It was as if she was right there with her, guiding her. Again, I got chills all down my body and I clapped my hands at the end. Even Saya fell to his feat in awe of her.

Kmuse: One of the best scenes of the series so far. For once I didn’t feel that we were suffering because of the directing choices.

MiataMama: This scene was truly magical. It was beautiful to see Tanya put together all that she had been taught; to see her realize that she was the true heir and High Priest of the Asa clan. I held my breath throughout her dance and slingshot throw, then totally cheered when she rang the star bell!

Kdrama Jen: It was so nice to see this all come together! I loved how we were able to see so many puzzle pieces short into place. Prophecies suddenly make sense. Skills taught to Tanya now have an explanation. This scene was just perfect!

Final Thoughts

Clkytta: I’m ready for the next season. I can’t wait to see what happens now that Tanya has been revealed as the true heir of Asa Sin. I am a hopeless romantic and I want Tanya and Eum Sum to be reunited, sorry fellow fangirls, I love Saya, but he’s not in my OTP.

Drama Geek: As the last few episodes of this season unfolded, it became clear that Tanya and Eun Sum’s reunion is what I’m most looking forward to in season 3. I believe Saya was what Tanya needed to get to where she is now, but I know the moment he sees Eun Sum, he will use his brilliant mind to keep Tanya for himself. His goal is for those like him to be accepted, and I do hope he obtains that goal. But for Eun Sum and Tanya, they care about the people. I’m excited to see how the bell, sword, and mirror will bring about the end of the “world”.

Kmuse: I’m really invested in seeing Eun Sum & Saya interact together. Can’t wait to see what happens. My only complaint is that I wish this drama was longer.

MiataMama: I’m thankful we didn’t get left on a worrisome cliff-hanger. We have hope – Tanya now has power and Eun Sum’s fighting spirit is back, propelling him to return to her side. I’m SO looking forward to their reunion! And I’m also curious how Saya’s role, in their prophetic triangle, will play out. Hopefully the next couple of months will pass by quickly as we wait to see the fate of Arthdal.

Kdrama Jen: I have enjoyed this despite some of the directing. I jumped to attention once Saya sauntered into the picture. I hope he continues to evolve as a character. I am really looking forward to his meeting with Eun Sum. I definitely am looking forward to the next season!

Til next season, and the next magical moment,

The Fangirls

Dramas With a Side of Kimchi

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