Arang and the Magistrate Episode 3 Recap

[EDIT] Recap for Episode 4 is up by Kaptain here!

This drama is cute, it’s fun, it’s so engaging and best of all-it leaves you wondering about and wanting more. You get to deal with ghosts, gods and death but in a totally different way. Being dead doesn’t mean a free pass at everything-it’s a battle of survival even as the dead. And even for the dead, facing their fate isn’t an easy task. Arang comes face to face with another truth about herself and the free spirited girl decides to take matters in her own hands, which makes for another adventure while our dear hero Eun Oh starts to fall for the girl… ghost without even realizing it!

Episode 3:

The episode opens with Arang and Eun Oh lying face to face. She calls out to him once, “Magistrate” before moving forward for a kiss. Eun Oh stares with wide eyes at first and then closes his eyes when she’s mere inches away. And just when their lips meet, Eun Oh wakes up with a start! Ah, so he’s the one doing the dreaming, hehe!

He blinks before jerking up and looking around. Finally, he scowls at himself, muttering that he really is going crazy. Haha! He hands a letter to Dol Swe to deliver to Joo Wal. Dol Swe promises to deliver the letter but asks Eun Oh how long he intends to stay on here as the Magistrate. Eun Oh tells him it won’t be long.

In Heaven, The Jade Emperor (Hereon Jade) and Yeom Na (hereon Hades) sit fishing and discussing Hades’s increasing wrinkles. Haha, seriously? Hehe, Jade points out Hades’s wrinkles are increasing these days and Hades goes all like-you-don’t-know-why! Thanks to all the ghosts running around rampant these days, Hades says he isn’t getting any peace.

He refers to souls that disappeared four hundred years ago, didn’t Jade promise to do something about it? Jade clears his throat and pats his brother’s arm, “I do feel sorry about that.” Hades tells him to do it soon or he’ll definitely do things his way.

Jade tells him, “Do you know why you’re so slow to mature but so quick to age? It’s that hasty temper of yours. Just wait.”

Arang braids her hair just as Bang Wool brinds in her clothes and makeup supplies. Arang smiles and eyes the clothes happily-just like a little girl who’s got new clothes. She dresses herself up with care and opens the makeup box and applies it, wears accessories and finally turns to the mirror to check her appearance… but can’t see herself in it. Awww!

Outside, Eun Oh’s pacing around, wondering what’s taking her so long. Bang Wool tells him that’s how girls usually are. Before he can reply, Arang comes out of the room and he is totally lost with one look at her. Bang Wool wonders if Arang’s out and asks Eun Oh how she looks and he’s like-she just looks like a slightly less terrible-looking ghost! Poor Arang’s face falls at that. Eun Oh tells Arang to wait here and come over later. She wants to go with him but he refuses. Aww, guy’s trying to run away!

Joo Wal gets Eun Oh’s note and wonders why the Magistrate wants to see her. At Bang Wool’s Arang plays around with her new clothes. Bang Wool prays to the gods and realizing Arang is there asks her to just leave her now-isn’t it enough that she made her into a thief? Doesn’t she have a conscience? Arang listens quietly and slips away, her head hanging.

Hehe, a few steps away, she picks up her skirt front so it doesn’t touch the ground. So cute! Eun Oh meanwhile walks around on a bridge, muttering to himself that she was much better hanging upside down and being a scary ghost. He credits his reaction to her clothes and sighs to himself, “That’s it, I have to stick around. Who knows what kind of trouble she’ll cause? Until she regains her memory, even if I don’t want to, we have to be together.” Hehe, that’s the only reason? Nothing else, not even a teensy teensy bit? And so he turns around and heads back.

Arang is walking through the town when she remembers the dealer who gave her the herb that would make her visible. Thinking more on it, she realizes she won’t need to bother Eun Oh about it anymore and decides to go for it. She marches to the place, unaware that there’s a trail of angry ghosts after her.

She calls out to the dealer but he doesn’t show. The new ghosts come over and she puts up a good fight, getting especially angry when they step onto her clothes. She manages to fight them off but there’s new ghosts joining the fight and soon, she’s outnumbered. When another ghost steps on her clothes, she shouts at him, “I told you not to step on my clothes!” Aww! There’s going to be lots of Aww moments today, ne?

As the ghosts hold her for their leader to hit her, a foot shoots out and hits the leader, sending him sprawling. A hand reaches out and grabs Arang forward.  It’s Eun Oh. He rants at her for walking away and then at her for ruining the clothes, fussing that they cost so much! The ghosts stare down at him and one mutters to the other, “Isn’t he a human?” They warn Eun Oh to step out-it’s their fight but he’s like-do you know how much I had to suffer for those clothes-pointing to Arang’s outfit.

The ghosts move in for a fight, surrounding them so Eun Oh decides its time to take out the big guns and removes the pouch from his sleeve containing the red beans. The ghosts draw back in fear but Eun Oh opens the pack and out falls… one tiny bean. The ghosts laugh at him, telling him again to just get lost quietly. Before they can say more, Eun Oh turns to beat the life… uh, lifelessness out of them. First he does it barehanded and then, with his fan. Arang warns the ghosts that since they’ve messed with a human now, reapers would be on their way but the ghosts are too angry to care.

And yet, they’re too undead to actually die down or back down so Eun Oh has quite a hard time with them even as he flies away here and there. Tsk tsk, wires! He spots Arang being cornered and hurries to her side, just barely holding her from being strangled. They become cornered once again but just in the nick of time, reapers descend. Hehe, gotta say, Arang must’ve been happy for the first time in her uh, death to see reapers descend the sky! Sure enough, reapers descend down and start banging on the ghosts, Eun Oh grabs Arnag and they make their getaway.

Elsewhere in a street, Arang frees her hand from Eun Oh’s and stares down at her clothes dejectedly. Eun Oh clocks her reaction but gets annoyed-does she want new cloths now? “Oh, you won’t go looking like that?” She tells him to forget it, it’s not like Joo Wal can see her and takes off running. As Eun Oh heads after her, it starts raining.

By the time they get to the meeting place, Joo Wal has already left after having waited for him-or them, as is, to show. Eun Oh wonders at his fate-what is he doing chasing a ghost around in the rain anyway, he asks himself. Clouds get darker on the sky and more rain pours down.

Arang is totally listless now, wondering why things always go wrong and Eun Oh agrees, naming all her misfortunes including dying young and not even making new clothes last a day. Leaning close to her, he mutters, “It probably feels so unfair that you can’t go on to the afterlife this way, right?”

But his words are a damper on her mood, probably the clothes one most and she shouts out at him, “What have I done so wrong?!” Turning to the skies, she shouts out, “YOU MEAN OLD FOGEY! YOU MEAN OLD FOGEY!”

The cries echo all the way up to heavens where Jade sighs at the sound and Hades smirks-someone’s remembering Jade it seems. Jade points out-she’s saying old fogey, so it’s not him! They get back to their badook game and her cries, “What did I do so wrong? Why are you doing this to me?” reach up to him and at the latter, he smiles before placing a piece on the board. Just then, we cut to see a red ribbon lying in a stream beneath a cliff.

The next morning a man enters the Magistrate’s Office in a flurry. One of the men goes to see Choi while Joo Wal’s servant brings him the news. Eun Oh’s returning when he hears the news from Dol Swe “They found a dead body. A young lady…Jade, you sneaky god with that charming smile!

Eun Oh rushes to the scene where Arang’s maid is crying over the body. He’s told by the magistrate’s men that they’ve identified her as the former magistrate’s daughter. Slowly, Eun Oh approaches the corpse but he’s already realized it’s her by her familiar hanbok. The men mutter amongst themselves about what kind of ghostly magic has kept the body still like this after three years.

Eun Oh removes the cover and finds Arang’s dead face there. There’s such emotion in the way he totally stills in that moment after seeing her like this. He curiously notes that his mother’s pin is not on Arang’s body. A man tells him it’s most probably murder since she was stabbed and he remembers Arang’s words about it hurting as if she were stabbed. He turns back, only to come face to face with Arang.

Arang stands there, staring at her maid crying and Eun Oh approaches her, telling her not to see it. She’s persistent and takes one step forward when she catches a glimpse of her face. She goes deathly still as she stands there, eyes filled with pain, shock and disbelief. She takes an uneasy step back, “Why am I… Why am I.. Why?” Unable to take it anymore, she turns and runs away. Eun Oh moves to go after her but stops when he sees Joo Wal arriving.

Arang runs through forest and field, asking herself, “Why, why do I have to be lying there, like that? Why did I have to die?” Flashback shows her earlier days as a ghost, when she’d walked but no one saw her, screamed but no one heard her, starved and learned how to live in the ghost world-how to fight back, how to get food and how to protect what she had, being chased by ghosts and reaper alike. Running and running, she finally collapses by the river, crying heart wrenchingly.

Joo Wal stands by the corpse, unable to bring himself to see the face and the Magistrate’s officer tells him it has been confirmed that she is the Magistrate’s daughter. Joo Wal’s men come over, his servant announcing that they will be taking the body but Eun Oh puts a stop to that-how can the body be handed over to strangers-this is clearly a murder case. The servant looks at him-who the hell is he to stop this all. Eun Oh: “Me? I’m the Magistrate!” The servant looks around at the Bang trio who nod thir heads sorrowfully. Haha, that was the best part!

Joo Wal asks about the meeting earlier and Eun Oh says he was late due to a ‘situation’ and he wanted to ask him something but the point is moot now. He tells Eun Oh he has orders from his father for the matter to be dealt with ‘quietly’. Eun Oh counters that if his fiancée really was murdered, this becomes a matter of clearing her name and recovering her honor. Isn’t that important to him? Joo Wal says his family cares more about stopping the gossip.

Eun Oh thinks its probably since the guy felt a grudge against her for three years since he must have thought she left him but Joo Wal counters-he feels no grudge, nothing. Truly, he didn’t even know her and only saw her face once which he can no longer remember. “Also, one must have feelings for another in order to feel resentment or hatred, no?” He tells Eun Oh he doesn’t care how he deals with the matter but warns that his father won’t be so easy. Eun Oh simply watches him with a wary eye.

As he’s leaving, his servant asks if its okay to just leave things like this but Joo Wal says nothing. Alright guys, is it just me or does the way Joo Wal always keep one finger on his hand straight and caress his ring totally suspicious? Arang falls asleep where she collapsed and wakes long after nightfall. At the magistrate’s the servant burns Arang’s old clothes, telling her she is sorry to send her like this but hopes she will go to a goof place. Eun Oh watches her, remembering Arang’s reaction. He whispers, “That’s why I said not to look! Where and what is she doing?

Dol Swe comes up and tells him they put the body in the girl’s room and wonders what they’ll be doing next. Eun Oh mutters, “I don’t know either.” Dol Swe thinks he means Lord Choi but Eun Oh mutters that he’ll ask Arang what she wants- whether it’s recover her honor, capture her killer, or just bury everything.

Arang comes over to where her body is lying  in her room, now clean and dressed in burial clothes. She sits by her side, staring at herself, taking in the face she’s forgotten. “So this is what you look like. That’s what your eyes look like. And your nose. And your mouth. You were pretty.” She mutters to herself, tears silently falling from her eyes, her voice low and sad, “But why were you in such a cold, dirty place? Why were you just lying there like a victim? What happened? Who did this to you?”

Tears fall more as she pleads, her voice quivering with emotion. “Don’t you know? Why don’t you know, stupid? Why don’t you know?”

She wipes away her tears and looks defiantly, “You wait. I’ll find out for you.”

Later, she sits on the roof, staring out at the moon for a long while and makes a prayer. “Old fogey! I don’t know how to pray… but listen anyway. You were looking down from up there, so you can see everything. What happened to her? Just tell me what you saw. Please just tell me.” Folding her hands and closing her hands, she pleads, “King of Heaven, every bad thing I did up until now… I was wrong. And the cursing too. If you just tell me, I won’t do anything, and I’ll be good and go on to the next life. Okay? … Okay? … OKAY?!” Hehe, she says the last three as if expecting an answer and sits there with her hands folded for a while. When there’s no reply, she looks up exasperated, “So you’re not going to tell, is that it? YOU OLD FOGEY!!!!” Again, her cries echo up to Heaven.

This time again, Jade starts at the sound and Hades tells him to just sit quietly and do nothing, he’ll handle ‘that one.’ “That one’s all mine, particularly with aggravated punishment.” Jade reminds him she promised to come quietly if he tells her, and muses that he sometimes answers prayers.

Hades tells him not to mess with things, every time he does so Hades has to clean the mess after him and in turn gets labeled the ‘bad god’ while Jade gets to be the ‘good god’!

Jade asks, tongue in cheek: “Do you really think about those things?”

Hades clears his throat at that, turning the topic back to Arang-she threatened a God, who does she think she is to threaten so. Jade realizes Hades is changing the subject and simply laughs, “So you were thinking about stuff like that!

Eun Oh sits with Arang’s body and wonders where she has gone to. At the same time, Bang Wool is deep in prayer, which she keeps forgetting every two letters and opens the book to sneak a peek! Hehe! A sudden wind blows the candles and shaman wonders if she really has gotten the powers she was hoping for, only to realize its Arang once again. She’s come for another favor.

Bang Wool takes Arang to a dark place where things are cluttered in chaos. They come to a door closed with a Talisman and Arang wonders where they are. Bang Wool tells her it’s the only place where what she wants can be done and reminds Arang-if this goes well, she’s never to come to her again. And I totally love how Bang Wool’s always talking to Arang on the wrong side, hehe!

Arang tries to pass through the door but the Talisman rejects her entrance. Bang Wool rips off the Talisman and Arang opens the bars on it. They head inside. Bang Wool looks around and wonders what kind of strong one were they looking to capture that they made it so elaborate. She warns Arang-if things go wrong, they’re both dead. While Bang Wool will go from human to dead, since Arang is already dead, she will simply disappear.

Arang shrugs it off-she’s already dead, what’s the difference? Bang Wool points out that she’d become someone who never existed at all, and there’s a huge difference between having existed and died and never existing at all. Meanwhile, Eun Oh, tired of the wait, heads out to look for Arang himself, leaving Dol Swe to guard the body. Poor Dol Swe freaks out at having to guard the body.

Joo Wal is watching the moon when Choi comes out to meet him and rants at him for not even being able to do one small thing well. The he says something interesting to Joo Wal-that he’s wearing the form well but “There’s always a way to tell the difference between real and fake.”

He asks if Joo Wal can handle the full moon (-I’m thinking, ugh, what is going on here?! Somehow, I don’t want him to be a werewolf) and warns that if anything bad befalls his house because of Joo Wal, he won’t let it go. He leaves Joo Wal stewing. Next thing we see, Joo Wal’s servant and a band of men exit the house, heading somewhere.

Bang Wool looks around the place, finally uncovering a hidden wall, after removing more talismans, where there is a pattern drawn onto the wall behind. It’s the mark every dead person carries on him. She removes another pattern that she has brought with her-the thing Arang couldn’t touch. Arang asks her if things really will go well and she hangs up the second sign, telling Arang not to worry and asks who they’re trying to catch.

Arang doesn’t reply and turns to blow in Bang Wool’s face, causing painful, itchy blisters to form. Arang tells her to wait, it’ll fade in a bit. Arang wonders if this would be enough for them to come. Much later, she tells Bang Wool she’s decided to go to the afterlife. Bang Wool perks up at first, but then realizes it means she won’t get to see… well hear Arang anymore and her face slightly falls.

Suddenly, Arang feels a presence and mutters, “You’ve come?” It’s Mu Young. He asks if she’s really made preparations to leave and she agrees-he can sleep peacefully now but before that, she has a request to make-if she can meet The King of Heaven, she’ll go. He tells her the person she must meet is Yeom Na, aka King of Underworld and there’s no deals other than that.

Arang calls him by his title-presumably Head Death Reaper or something and poor Bang Wool puts her hand over her mouth in horror, wondering what she’s gotten herself involved into. Haha, wouldn’t do to have the head reaper have a grudge against you, now would it? Arang tells Mu Young If he wants to take her, he has to meet her terms. He refuses again and begins to ready the rope.

She backs away and says she has to ask that old fogey something. Bang Wool registers the word but in her fear, sits there dazed so Arang yells it over again. Bang Wool rushes away as Arang shouts again, “I said old fogey! What are you doing?!” That sparks Mu Young’s suspicion but before he can react, Bang Wool pushes the second pattern over the first, creating a black hole kind of space which starts pulling Mu Young and Arang towards it.

In Heaven Jade puts down a piece on the badook table and mutters that trouble’s afoot but Hades simply smiles, telling him it’s all over. That causes Jade to scowl at him. Meanwhile, back at the black hole, Bang Wool mutters her apologies to Mu Young, telling him she never realized it was him and begs to be saved, aka not killed. Mu Young asks Arang why she’s doing this and how they’ll both end up disappearing but it doesn’t matter to her-she’s nothing to lose. As the black hole extends, making it harder for Mu Young to hold on, she asks him again to let her meet Jade.

In heaven, Jade makes another move, saying the same-trouble’s afoot but Hades says not to worry and chuckles as Jade studies the game. Hades sure he’s going to win but Jade puts down a piece in the game-and wins.

Hade’s eyes widen and he looks at the board. He turns to Jade-one move, just take one move back. Jade pretends not to have heard so Hades persists and Jade asks mischievously, “Then what’ll you do for me?”

At the black hole, Hade’s voice rings out, “Mu Young!” Whatever he says next, Mu Young tells Arang he will accept her request. Arang shouts out for Bang Wool to remove the pattern. Once they’re both safe again, Mu Young tells Arang never to do something like this again and she retorts, “Will there be another time when we’re so close?

Up in Heaven, Jade smiles and takes back his move. Hades grumpily resumes the game. Eun Oh searches around for Arang but can’t find her. “Amnesia, where the hell have you gone?” At the same time, Arang is being led away by Mu Young.


First and foremost-I LOVE Jade and Hades! These guys are so awesome together as the gods who are forever bickering and playing with each other, all the while their unspoken game is about the people. The way they’re teasing each other-Jade more than Hades and the sneaky manipulation underfoot! Assa!

This whole episode otherwise, was focused on Arang. We get to see her hopes rise and fall, see more of her character-the girl behind the ghost and learn about “Arang”-the girl who woke as a ghost-how she faced reality and how she battled it out. I’ve no doubt her old self was as docile and ladylike as she was supposed to be in the rold of the Magistrate’s daughter while this new her-Arang is a totally different person with her own spirit and spunk. Especially watching her take things into her own hands-daring it all was beyond satisfactory!

And the scene where she sees her dead body and her resounding words-why is she there? She’s lived three years among the undead, seen a lot of things but nothing prepared her to face her own self. The way she sits by her corpse, asking her other self what happened-she’s a pretty girl, she was a magistrate’s daughter-why on earth would she end up like that-in that dirty cold place? As Arang, none of it makes sense to her-she’s a person who fights back, who doesn’t let others best her and so the way she collapsed by the river and cried her heart out-it was heartbreaking!

I am loving Mina as Arang. Period.

About hitomiakiko

Architect and Aspiring Writer

Posted on August 25, 2012, in Asian Cinema, Entertainment, Korean Cinema, Potpourri, Recaps, Uncategorized, Written Excerpts. Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

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  2. Only starting this drama now! I’m confused about the black hole in the scene, and I was wondering if you knew. Why did Muyoung want to prevent Arang from going into the blackhole? What is that portal’s purpose?

    • Hehe, it’s been ages since i saw that drama. The thing is, the black hole was like a ‘vaccum’ where if Arang and/or Muyoung fell, they would be totally erased i.e. even their souls will not exist. That is why he tried to prevent her and she used it as a bargaining chip.

  3. i didn’t cry for arang but i was sad enough to wish her a happy blessful life. who knew that the twist would make me this happy.

    i also loved the fighting sequences!! can we have more of that please? it looks fabulous, especially with lee junki flying around with his scholar outfit. heheheh 😛

  4. I’m loving everything about this drama… Lee Jun-ki and Min-ah are so adorable together…keep the hard work recapping this wonderful drama!!!

  5. Wohoooo I was right he has fallen for her but boy that was quick or may be Arang did kiss him but he thought it was a dream.

    Cant we just have a whole episode of just Hades and Jade, seriously I can watch them all day playing badook or fishing and I like Jade’s cheekiness and shocked Hades.

    Eun Oh was shocked to see how pretty Arang was looking in those new clothes but he had already given his heart to the girl who came to scare him upside down.

    Aww Bang Wol you dont have to break her heart and I like how she was after a few moments, all happy again.

    Poor Eun Oh there’s no turning back you are a goner.

    Arang was more worried about her clothes than herself awww, enter Eun Oh to save her, I loved how he grasped her hand pulled her and she fell in his arms ^.^ -and me is stuck in that scene, I cant seem to move forward-
    It was hilarious how dramatically he took out the pouch only to find one bean HAHAHA

    Eun Oh is worried so he will walk behind Arang as she is feeling down and in the rain truly this guy is a goner.

    I love how Jade is like, she said OLD FOGEY, so not me. hehehe

    That was heartbreaking for Arang to see her body like that and me was sad too, how she kept running and then cried.

    Both guys are not afraid of each other but I say be careful Eun Oh this Joo wal guy is super suspicious.
    If he feels nothing for her, then why was he finding her, she was the one he was finding right?

    Arang talking to her own body was like she is talking to somebody else and when she said: why dont you know stupid? why dont you know? T T

    Joo Wol is not human and you dont want him to be a werewolf, how about a vampire then, but vampire has nothing to do with full moon, no wait it has something to do. Do they get weaker or do they get powers. – JOO WAL TELL US ALREADY WHO YOU ARE-

    Arang is determined to meet old fogey even the grim reaper cant scare her and her wish is granted.

    Poor Eun Oh is worried sick about her love.

  6. Poor Arang. You’re not dead until you see your cold, unmoving body. Love that Eun Oh wanted to shield her from the painful shot to the heart.

    My other favorite scene is that of the fight. How awesome was Jun Ki’s midair flip!!

    This episode focused on Arang’s, the next is Eun Oh. =D

  1. Pingback: Recap: Arang and the Magistrate Episode 4 » A Virtual Voyage

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