by: Raine and MadDino
(Even Team Joseon pays homage to The Beatles.)
Raine: I’ve found a new K-drama love and her name is Rooftop Prince. Where else can you find hanbok wearing, whip cream eating, unwitting slapstick comedians from the Joseon era? RIGHT HERE! Don’t forget chipmunk voices, tooth-brushing and toilet flushing good times.
Episode 1 came in at 9.8% on the ratings and I’m willing to be this episode improved upon that. I seriously busted a gut. It had a healthy dose of fun, romance, plot development, evil and a whole lot of clever. Me and MadDino had an AWESOME time recapping this.
“After a While” – Baek Ji-young (from the Rooftop Prince OST)
(YAY! The goddess of crooning! No, seriously, the vocal control this woman has is fumazing)
episode 2 recap
Raine: Last episode ended with a standoff. In one corner with have Park Ha armed with a frying pan. In the other corner we have Lee Gak armed with a eunuch, a scholar and a very hot man with a sword.
Deeno: I vote for team frying pan.
Raine: Me too. I think she’d win.
Deeno: Would turn them into poached eggs.
Raine: Delicious and delightfully nutritious.
Raine: Team Joseon backs a terrified, beslippered Park Ha onto the terrace. She prepares herself for the worst but is saved by a wonder of 21st-century living: electricity. Like moths to a flame, Team Joseon is drawn towards the city lights.
Lee Gak: What are all those lights?
Raine: The question completely dissolves any fear Park Ha had felt and replaces it with incredulity. Yong-sul, unnerved by his unfamiliar surroundings, stands ready to run her through with a sword. Lee Gak prevents him from doing so and wonders if she’s an evil spirit. She wonders which asylum they escaped from.
Deeno: I’d say mine, but I would never let such pretties escape.
Raine: After a quick huddle, they decide to have her take them to the palace; they’ll even let her live if she does. Park Ha stares at them in disbelief.
Then, she drives them through Seoul. We know that they are going to be surprised because they’re from the past, but these guys are so cute being all surprised and terrified while still trying to maintain their dignity despite themselves.
Park Ha is impressed by the “historical” knowledge Lee Gak spouts but not so impressed when he expresses a desire to rip out her mouth. He demands to be taken to the palace AT ONCE. With a devilish grin, she agrees and FLOORS it. Hehe. I like her.
Deeno: I like her too. She won’t take their shenanigans.
Raine: I was worried she was going to be completely vapid from the released character profiles, but she’s delightfully practical and snarky.
An aside: I wonder how many NGs happened during these kinds of scenes because they can’t keep a straight face…I sure as hell wouldn’t be able to!
Raine: The truck stops, the three in the truck bed climb out and she waits for the Crown Prince to do the same. He doesn’t. Clucking with disappointment, she unbuckles his seatbelt and leans over him to open his door.
Aw, she is now reborn. Please call her: “Mother Hen.”
The three musketeers help the prince out of the truck as Park Ha suggests that they look for a new line of work. Fighting! She takes off and scholarly Man-bo studies the back of the truck.
Raine: In front of the gates to Changdeok Palace, Team Joseon tries to enter to no avail. Instead, a cop with fluffy hair, now to be known as “Fluffy Cop”, comes ‘round and tells them to hurry along if they’ve finished filming. Under the glare of the floodlight, they scatter like mice, tripping, bumbling and at a general loss. Along with the music, and the chipmunk voices, I seriously laughed myself off my chair.
Deeno: Best nickname ever.
Raine: Then they get stuck at a median and Yong-sun decides to play traffic cop until a real cop, Fluffy Cop, moves them along.
Park Ha installs an electronic padlock on her door. Don’t fight fate, honey.
Deeno: They’ll come back and it will make you happy.
Raine: Four men in your place? YES! Well…three men…
Deeno: Who are you excluding from the man category?
Raine: The eunuch…hehe.
Raine: It’s begun to rain and the Crown Prince is waiting under an awning when hunger finally catches up to him. He drools over the cup ramyun that two girls are eating inside the convenience store and freaks them out. When he orders the cashier to feed him with the promise of handsome compensation, she calls the cops.
Deeno: That’s how I stare a blood spatter, with such longing.
Raine: Does it taste as good as cup ramyun?
Deeno: Who needs cup ramyun when you just had a delicious cannoli?
Raine: Lo and behold, Fluffy Cop shows up with the other three members of Team Joseon in tow. They failed in their mission to secure food for the royal belly.
Deeno: I like to imagined a beer belly floating around the city dressed in royal garb.
Raine: At the market, Park Ha is cheerfully shopping, well-known and liked by everyone and appreciated for her fine eye in choosing ingredients.
Team Joseon has landed themselves in jail for trespassing on the grounds of Changdeok Palace – they didn’t buy a ticket for admission. When asked for their names and birthdates, Fluffy Cop all but rolls his eyes out of their sockets, especially when Lee Gak says, “I am the Crown Prince. That’s all you need to know.”
So Fluffy Cop writes, “Slight frame. Height 176-178 cm. Dressed in old costumes. Long eyelashes.” HAHAHAHA!!! There was so much fangirling during SKKS over Micky Yoochun’s eyelashes. Nice move, show. Nice move.
Raine: FOUR rascals…hot rascals…in a cell. A cell of eye candy. Lucky Fluffy.
Raine: Anyway, without guardian contact details, Fluffy won’t let them go. Another cop begins to eat and the famished Team Joseon is temporarily distracted by the call of hunger. Then, Man-bo manages to refocus.
They don’t know what “guardian contact” means so Fluffy shows them a driver’s license, a phone and a license plate. The plate jogs Man-bo’s memory of Park Ha’s truck plate.
Lee Min-ho is SOOO adorable. Pinch da cheeks. *squish squish*
Raine: Man-bo’s memory of Park Ha’s truck plate transitions to Park Ha delivering groceries to Se-na’s apartment. The door is propped open with a shoe and she happily puts away the food.
She is surprised by a man walking out of the shower in a towel and covers her eyes. Why are you covering your eyes? WHY? It’s Tae-mu *drool* who is equally as surprised to see her. He thought she was Se-na who walks in at that very moment.
Park Ha mutters, “sorry unni” and bolts awhile Tae-mu wonders why the girl called Se-na unni. But Se-na explains it off – she is just a younger friend who is good to me since Se-na helped her. She delivers groceries for a living and occasionally brings some by.
Raine: Tae-mu glances at the bag of groceries and readies to leave. Before he makes it all the way out of the parking lot, he slams on his breaks as the memories from New York accost him. The grocery girl is “Apple Girl” from New York.
Deeno: I’m waiting for him to go back for the kill. Please, kill the girl.
Raine: Karma’s a bitch buddy. Also, the music at this point is in the same style as the music from City Hunter. I wonder if it’s the same composer…
Raine: In the jail cell, Man-bo carefully prepares himself to do calligraphy…with a marker. Pfffffft. He slowly draws out the Hangul and Arabic numerals of the truck plate and they excitedly present it to Fluffy.
It’s no surprise that Park Ha is flabbergasted to see Team Joseon at her door stop with a cop for a guard. Does she know them? he inquires and she immediately responds in the affirmative, before realizing her mistake. She tries to explain it away, but Fluffy takes that opportunity to sneak away.
Deeno: Why would she deny knowing them? Take them home and keep them as pets.
Raine: You know why you call me perverted unni right? Guess what I’m thinking…
Deeno: Bad Pervert Unni!
Raine: Park Ha has had enough and storms past them but Chi-san is quick on his feet and “faints”. Man-bo catches on and fusses, “You couldn’t eat for two whole days. Is that the reason why you fainted?” They make cow eyes at her and because Mother Hen is all bark and no bite, she brings in the strays.
Then, she rocks the kitchen. Why am I watching this while I’m hungry? Seriously…rice omelettes…nom nom nom.
Raine: She serves them but they won’t eat at the same table as their prince. His stomach directs him to allow the transgression because it’s an emergency. As soon as his spoon touches his food, they’re off to the races! They’re finished in moments and Lee Gak smiles in contentment and declares that he’s happy. The other three bow and thank him. Park Ha stares again.
Deeno: He’s so cute when he’s happy. I want to pinch his nose.
Raine: I…squee’d. Very loudly. And then squee’d again.
Raine: The landlady knocks and wants to introduce a new tenant so a perturbed. Park Ha sets a water bottle on the floor and leaves with a warning not to make any trouble. She’s introduced to Lady Mimi and naively wonders if that’s her real name.
So she’s good with her hands but not so swift on the uptake…
Raine: Lady Mimi reads in Park Ha’s face that her life has many men in it just as Yong-sul attempted to rip the top off the water bottle. When that fails, Man-bo joins in on a tug-o-war and they pull, with hilarious chipmunk voices grunting and bickering. They fly apart and accidentally land on the t.v. remote. A sageuk is playing and Yong-sul jumps in front of the prince to protect him and attacks the t.v.
Deeno: This show is turning me into a pile of squees and giggles. I can’t think of anything except how cute they are. I don’t even want them to die.
Raine: *sits in stunned silence*
Lady Mimi explains that she draws webtoons and needs quiet to work. Park Ha ensures her that her home is always quiet.
Raine: Of course, Yong-sul lobs a potted plant at the t.v. CRASH! The rice cooker calls out instructions and Yong-sul hurls it to the floor, knocking over a lantern in the process. The other three are quaking with fear.
Better watch out for those rice cookers.
Deeno: I had a rice cooker once. It ate my toaster, so I set it free.
The landlady will sue if Lady Mimi sets the house on fire. Oh come on, Park Ha scoffs. There are no kids here who would play with fire.
Yes, Mama Hen. There are. And those kids, with chipmunk voices, are playing with it as you speak.
Man-bo spits water from the toilet onto the fire, trips onto a talking teddy bear, which Yong-sul slices into bits.
Deeno, does that count as an animal death?
Deeno: No blood…
Raine: But it was so sad…all that fluff…
Deeno: Cute, not sad.
Raine: We have radically different definition of cute.
Deeno: Tae-mu is cute. And hot.
Raine: Park Ha walks in and screams in abject horror before grabbing the fire extinguisher. Crisis averted.
Well, almost. Now the chickadees have to deal with Mother Hen. They try to sneak out but get caught, turning around one after another, in wonderfully hysterical synchronization.
Raine: She beckons them with a finger which brings them back to their Joseon ingrained propriety. How dare she point a finger at the prince? Yong-sul unsheathes his sword, but she brushes it aside. She ain’t having NONE of that. They call themselves noble but eat her food, destroy her home and then try to sneak out? Is this appropriate for your highness?
Although quite ashamed, Lee Gak must keep his dignity. “I, the foundation of the nation, cannot be that shameless.” He shoves his nose in the air, trying to at least PHYSICALLY top her after she verbally tore him to shreds. What should he do for her?
Raine: She wisely has them change out of royal garb and orders them to clean and shower. She keeps their clothing to ensure they won’t run away…unless they want to run naked.
I vote yes!!!
Deeno: I vote no!
Raine: I vote Deeno’s crazy.
Deeno: I vote Raine’s a pervert.
Raine: Park Ha hauls the clothing to the laundromat. She calls around to see if there are any missing people, most notably from a mental hospital, but there are none. Hahaha. This show totally went there. It’s one thing to reference insanity. It’s quite another to check a mental facility for missing patients. Love. This. Girl.
However, she’s not there to clean the clothes but for storage. She’s the woodcutter in the Lady and the Woodcutter story who will make them work like slaves….mwahahahaha!
Raine: Time for track suits! And nomu nomu nomu nomu nomu nomu hilarity!
Mother Hen has her chicks in tracksuits with their long hair down. But they don’t know how to zipper. She demonstrates on Lee Gak’s red tracksuit and zips it quickly, bringing their faces close together.
Crackle. Sizzle. Electricity.
It’s too soon to hope for a kiss, right? Yeah…
Deeno: Maybe next episode…but he’s kinda married. Well, Se-na is alive, but his wife is a corpse. This time travel reincarnation thing is confusing.
Raine: He’s available. Se-na is evil. therefore, by laws of Raine, he’s available and his lips are public property.
Anywho, she’s completely unnerved by their chemistry and hurries to help the others. He actually looks pretty out of sorts himself…
Raine: In order to pay for the damage to her apartment, she puts them to work. Man-bo, dressed in green, wants to know how long that will be. Listen “little green ahjussi”…..
BWAHAHAHAHAHA!!!! Little green ahjussi. I’m dying…Little green ahjussi.
Deeno: Hehehe! I love it.
ANYWAY, she tells him that they need to work for eight days because only three of them are working. Incensed, the Crown Prince demands to know where his clothes are, but she’s preoccupied by the “Yellow Ahjussi/Chi-san” dropping the vegetable bundles. Kekeke. The prince tries again and again she refuses to until everything is paid back.
He is seriously pissed off by her attitude (and a little intrigued dare I say) and wants to punish her by beating her. Cue little cartoon of Lee Gak beating Park Ha. Is it just me, or does this sound like a fantasy…?
Deeno: Just you, my perverted unni.
Raine: It can’t only be me. Hello? Anyone…?
Raine: Tae-mu and Se-na are eating together. He asks about Park Ha and she wonders at his curiosity. She looks familiar to him. Perhaps they lived in the same neighborhood…or she could’ve studied in America.
Se-na says she was born and schooled in the countryside and recently came to Seoul. While he is relieved, she is not and stews with jealousy.
President Yeo is in the hospital for pain and testing.
Raine: Team Joseon and Mother Hen are eating cup ramyun in the back of her pick-up. They copy her every movement, including putting the chopsticks in her mouth while opening the ramyun. Her phone rings and scares them, making her wonder if they’re fake or real. It’s Se-na who wants to meet at the hospital.
Raine: Park Ha orders them not to move but his royal highness is tired after his long day of doing nothing.
Park Ha: Don’t go anywhere! If I don’t see you when I come out, I will leave without you.
Lee Gak: I want to punish her.
And here is another cartoon fantasy. Ooh la la….
Oh come on guys, you KNOW you were thinking the same thing.
Deeno: Se-na acts as snootily as possible as she asks Park Ha to get out of her life and to stop burdening her. Yeah, do you think abandoning your sister burdened her at all? Just sayin’.
Raine: Can I please, please, please, please throw her in front of Yong-sul when he’s feeling sword-happy?
Deeno: The prince sees Se-na through the window and is amazed by the resemblance. He runs after her calling out to her. She doesn’t respond because well they’re separated by glass and she’s not really a crown princess in this life, for all that she acts like one.
Deeno: The prince tries to run to her, but his face gets introduced to the concept of glass.
Raine: The slapstick in this show is KILLING me. I watched these scene three times and laughed until my belly ached. You think, nah, that’s just way too obvious. They wouldn’t go there.
Oh, they would.
Deeno: The tracksuit trio runs after him and Park Ha realizes that her ducklings are causing mischief again. The prince wakes up with the trio and Park Ha hovering over him. He runs after his lost princess while the others doubt his sanity.
Deeno: Park Ha has finally had enough and lines up her ducklings. They all cringe as they wait for her to scold them, but are surprised when she turns on the prince first. She is not happy to deal with his medical bill, but she can’t let him run around with a broken nose. She sets him down to wait for an x-ray and tells him to follow orders.
As the prince is waiting, Tae-yong’s grandma, President Yeo, sees the prince. They meet eyes for a moment but he doesn’t recognize her. When she goes back to check, he’s gone.
Deeno: At home she tells the others what has happened. She assumes that she has gone crazy and that unless she moves on, she’ll never have a normal life. Normal is overrated.
Raine: Normal is lame.
Deeno: Insanity is fun.
Tae-mu’s “the annoying man who keeps sticking up for him” chimes in.
Raine: You mean his father?
Deeno: Yet again, I’m bad with names. In this case, really bad with nicknames.
He tells Grandma that her best comfort will be to have Tae-mu by her side. Even Se-na is asked for her opinion on the matter, but she seems conflicted. Why? Doesn’t she want her lover to worm his way into an inheritance?
Raine: I think she doesn’t know WHAT to feel. When you’re as twisted as she is, it’s hard to figure out what to be feeling. But Tae-mu knows what he’s feeling. He can barely hide the grin and being accepted into his grandmother’s household. Well, “grandmother”.
Deeno: The prince finally accepts that they have traveled to the future and things are not quite as they used to be. There must be some tie to the past that is keeping them there and reintroducing them to the crown princess. They will try to look for hints, while staying on the rooftop. The rooftop is the portal where they came and they conclude that is key to getting them back to Joseon.
Raine: Let’s just pause for a moment to enjoy how RIDICULOUS that sounds. I LOVE it.
Deeno: The prince worries about his crown princess doppelganger as Park Ha worries about her in the guise of her sister. Neither can sleep, so Park Ha suggests her best remedy: soju and whipped cream.
Raine: I’m going to have to try this. Except, where do you find soju in Miami?
Deeno: The whole thing sounds nasty to me. Both alcohol and whipped cream.
Raine: This is coming from the dinosaur who doesn’t like ice cream…she is not to be trusted.
Deeno: There’s nothing wrong with disliking ice cream.
Deeno: The prince delights in the joy of aerosol whipped cream.
Raine: And I delight in how RIDICULOUSLY cute they are. I rewound this scene, too…several times. It’s such a joy to see the prince unwind and delighting in the little things. And Micky is adorable smiling…
Deeno: So cute!
Deeno: The soju causes Park Ha’s face to redden. The prince is fascinated by her red cheeks and puts his hands her on her face to feel the warmth. Park Ha can’t help but feel the chemistry.She’s let down when he remarks that he only sees her as a very large hand warmer.
Raine: My poor overactive imagination can’t take two scenes with close enough proximity for kissing. Bad Crown Prince! BAD!
Deeno: How is that overactive? That’s right on the screen.
Raine: Now we can agree.
(Aren’t you guys loving the matching cups and toothbrushes?)
Deeno: Park Ha asks the prince if he’s seriously from the past. She promises not to tell and he admits that he’s from the past. After the night of drunkenness, she takes charge of training these misplaced beauties. From stoves to crosswalks she teaches them how to live in the modern world, with a few mishaps along the way.
Raine: You HAVE to mention when Man-bo realizes that the water he sprayed onto the fire was toilet water…HAHAHA! Or when they leave their shoes lined up along the curb when they got on the bus!
Deeno: I loved the shoe part. I didn’t get it at first till I saw the shoes nicely lined up.
Raine: I seriously called my mother and made her come watch. Then called my father and made HIM watch. We all cackled…and then I watched it again.
Deeno: Se-na ‘s mother asks Park Ha to help Se-na and therefore, Tae-mu, with the move into grandma’s house.
This is why you don’t get a truck. People keep asking you to help move and you can’t resist.
Raine: Sure you can. You can even react. Back that thing up. They won’t even know what hit ‘em.
Deeno: Yay! Violence!
Deeno: Se-na arrives at the chairman’s estate and leaves the prince behind while she takes the tracksuit trio to buy moving supplies.
The maid lets the prince in and brings him to Tae-yong’s room to start packing up things. The prince is startled to find Tae-yong’s portrait and the uncanny resemblance between himself and this unknown man. He is joined by a mourning Grandma who she assumes that the prince is Tae-yong and she embraces him, calling out his name.
Tae-mu and Se-na arrive. Se-na is annoyed by Park Ha’s presence, while Tae-mu worries that he may be recognized.
Raine: I’m telling you. Leaving helpless children behind and murdering relatives is really not the way to go. Or, at least ensure no Joseon-era doppelgangers are scheduled to appear. They tend to throw a wrench into the works.
Deeno: He goes in before Park Ha has a chance to closely examine him. Worse things await him inside, however, as Grandma introduces the prince as their long-lost relative, the man he murdered, Tae-yong.
Raine: Dun, dun, duuuuuuuun! A predictable cliffhanger, but still chock full of tension.
Like Flower Boy Ramyun Shop, this show weaves levity into gravity (or should it be gravity into levity?) quite well. It’s not with quite as much finesse, but I dig it all the same.
I love the dual role that Park Ha plays as Mother Hen and future love interest. The juxtaposition provides sooooo much fodder for good comedy of all sorts: slapstick, cultural references, potty, intellectual. You name it, they used it…and I cackled. And cackled. And rewound and cackled again. How cool is it that they played with whipped cream and managed to make it cute, fun, and hysterical all at the same time?
I mean, how funny is it that this blue-collar orphan (for all extensive purposes) is schooling a Crown Prince, a sword-happy Guard, a savvy Eunuch and a top Scholar? She cuts them down to size with a glance, just like a good Korean mama. Or, in my case, a good Jewish mutha.
The direction in this episode was a lot less jumpy and used good transitions for clarity of plot direction and to enhance humor. Like using the license plate to connect Team Joseon to Park Ha or the introduction of the new tenant to the ducklings antics.
As for our baddies, Tae-mu and Se-na definitely have their work cut out for them. Don’t they know that only lies can cover lies and soon you’re stuck with a web of lies to keep in tact and to keep TRACK of.
I’m also anxious to see how they’ll work on the murder mystery established so well in the first episode. It was on the back burner this episode as they introduced Team Joseon to 21st-century Seoul, but I’m sure it’ll be addressed right quick.
Deeno: I don’t know. I think it may take a while to get back to it. There is so much room for this drama to grow.
Raine: They have to give me something. All I got was a flashback to the two-faced green-eyed monster.
Finally, I see the prince growing already, and I love that. He has no power in this strange new world known as 21st-century Seoul and he knows it. He still tries to act like he does, but he’s learning quickly to adapt. I was afraid they were going to make him stupidly stubborn and a bit more idiotic. The absolute decimation of his pride is beautiful to watch because he’s already starting to pull himself back together – as a strong person.