The King: Eternal Monarch season 1, episode 15 is the lengthiest one so far and the most in-depth, lining up for what is hopefully an incredible finale.
This recap of Netflix Korean series The King: Eternal Monarch season 1, episode 15 contains spoilers.
How does The King: Eternal Monarch episode 15 open?
Episode 15 begins with Tae-eul from the alternate timeline meeting Lee Gon and hugging him, continuing from the last episode. Meanwhile, the present-day Tae-eul is still bleeding out and gets a call from her father; eventually, she fully collapses but luckily someone finds her and calls an ambulance.
As for Sin-jae, he receives an update from Jo Yeong; apparently his mother met Lee Gon’s mother at the Grace Heritage Hotel — Jo Yeong advises him to check the security camera at the hotel to track Song Jeong-hye. Sin-jae then meets Lee Lim who refers to him as Kang Hyeon-min; flashbacks show Lee Lim approaching him as a young boy. Lee Lim wants payback for his new life and tells Sin-jae that the lives of both of his mothers depend on him — he asks Sin-jae to bring Lee Gon’s whip and kill him in the process. The King: Eternal Monarch episode 15 sees many ultimatums and this one of them.
Lee Lim wants to pass on a message
Na-ri does a palm reading on Lee Lim and Eun-sup recognises him and freaks out; Lee Lim tells Eun-sup to pass on a message to Lee Gon — to meet him at the memorial mass or he will return to Na-ri. Eun-sup warns Tae-eul (it’s really Luna). Sin-jae suspects it isn’t Tae-eul, and then Tae-eul arrives and slaps Luna. They put Luna in handcuffs. Tae-eul asks Luna why she didn’t stab her deep enough to kill her; she wonders if she needs cancer treatment. Tae-eul is trying to learn about her alternate self as they are similar in some ways.
Lee Gon finally makes it
Lee Gon (from the alternate timeline) heads to the violent crime division in April 2020 and realises he’s in the right timeline/year and asks for Tae-eul. They are finally reunited and they emotionally embrace — it feels like a momentous achievement by Lee Gon who has spent time and energy skipping 26 years; they’ve missed each other terribly. Tae-eul asks Lee Gon not to leave as he helps her rest. She thanks Lee Gon for visiting her when she was 5 and 27 years old and asks him if he remembers what happened after that; Tae-eul learnt about his world quicker this time but tragedy still came inevitably — “We just haven’t reached our destination yet”. The King: Eternal Monarch episode 15 looks at alternate timelines and openly discusses them.
Meeting Song Jeong-hye
Lee Gon reunites with Jo Yeong and Sin-jae. Lee Gon senses that Sin-jae has been visited by Lee Lim. Sin-jae asks, “Will you die for me? It’ll be best if you died in your world”. Lee Gon asks Jo Yeong about Song Jeong-hye and then she shows up — she looks at Lee Gon: “It must be you. Lee Lim’s nephew. The same face as Ji-hun”. She starts getting emotional, stating Ji-hun would be alive if it wasn’t for him. Jo Yeong puts a gun to her security guard and Lee Gon tells Song Jeong-hye that it will be his mother’s death anniversary soon and believes Lee Lim will be taking her there that day — he offers to help her. Song Jeong-hye tells Lee Gon not to die because of her because she isn’t his mother.
The King: Eternal Monarch episode 15 gives Lee Gon and Tae-eul to spend time together. Lee Gon helps Tae-eul recover and spends quality time with her. Everything feels like the last time — almost like Lee Gon is staying longer to savour the moments. Lee Gon narrates — ” Let me say goodbye”. Tae-eul tells Lee Gon not to leave and forget about saving the world.
Tae-eul tells Lee Gon that she knows his plan — to go to the past and stop Lee Lim but that means Tae-eul won’t remember him: “If our worlds flow different from the present, then I’ll live without knowing you”. Lee Gon states that their worlds have already gone wrong — “There are so many reasons to change the past. It’s the only way”. Lee Gon asks Tae-eul to ask him to leave — he wants permission for the first time in his life. Tae-eul gives him permission but that he must come back, catch Lee Lim and keep the doors open to the Universes. Lee Gon promises to return to her. The King: Eternal Monarch episode 15 sees Lee Gon make a promise that he may not be able to keep.
Prime Minister Koo meets Lee Lim. When she asks about his umbrella Lee Lim gets angry and explains that she’s failed to get Lee Gon or the Kingdom of Corea. He gives Koo another task — to find a way for him to attend the memorial mass for Lee Gon’s mother that will be held soon; he’s going to announce at the mass that there are two worlds. Suddenly, time freezes and Lee Lim knows Lee Gon has shown up. Lee Gon returns to the palace and embraces Lady Noh — he thanks her for letting him go in the past. Lee Gon learns that Lee Seung-heon will be leaving in four hours. Lee Gon confronts Lee Seung-heon about the past where he shot his leg; he exiles him.
Meeting the real mother
Sin-jae meets his real mother and she tells him it was the only thing she could do back then — Sin-jae asks his mother if she lost him or abandoned him. His mother insists that she wanted him to live. Later on, Sin-jae thanks Lee Gon for protecting his mother. Sin-jae asks Lee Gon if he is even sure that he can catch Lee Lim if he goes back to that night — Lee Gon reveals that he does not plan to save himself this time and tells Sin-jae his timeline will change forever. Lee Gon gives Sin-jae one last chance to kill him before it’s too late. Lee Gon explains that Tae-eul cannot know his plans.
They meet again
Lee Lim is angry because Song Jeong-hye has poisoned herself. She calls him a fool and falls to the ground and starts to die. Ms Baek shows up with an antidote but time freezes and Lee Lim is unable to use the injection. He heads out to see Lee Gon. They face each other again for the second time in the series since that traitorous night.
Lee Lim tries shooting him but Lee Gon makes him aware that time will not flow for a while and that because he cheated death for 25 years using the Manpasikjeok, the world is dying. Time moves again and someone shoots Lee Lim in the leg; Sin-jae and Jo Yeong walk up behind Lee Gon and takes the other half of the Manpasikjeok off Lee Lim. The King: Eternal Monarch episode 15 sees Lee Lim defeated easily and slickly.
When they head to the portal, Lee Gon learns that he cannot use Lee Lim’s half of the Manpasikjeok as it’s soaked in the man’s blood. Suddenly, a different portal opens and Lee Lim says “they’re the obelisks of my father” and states he’s waited for a long time for this. Lee Gon cannot hear the flute and Lee Lim tells him he has eternity and infinity in his hands — it’s not crying as the Manpasikjeok is whole again. Lee Gon realises if it’s not crying he cannot return to the past to stop Lee Lim so he needs to make a crack in the Manpasikjeok again. Lee Lim calls him a fool.
Lee Lim tells Lee Gon he can open his own door but that he’d need someone to escort Lee Lim past his door — “Who will you order to die in there?”. Lee Gon tells Lee Lim he hasn’t transcended death and he will die miserably — both Jo Yeong and Sin-jae offer to escort Lee Lim. Lee Gon has a decision to make.
The flowers disappear
In the next scene, Sin-jae and Tae-eul have Lee Lim in the interrogation room confirming that Lee Gon picked Sin-jae to escort Lee Lim. Meanwhile, Jo Yeong and Lee Gon watch the cremation of Song Jeong-hye. Lee Gon then decides that Se-jin will be first in line to the throne immediately in case something happens to him.
Tae-eul suddenly sees her flowers disappear that Lee Gon gave to her. She asks Lee Lim where the Manpasikjeok is and expresses that she’s scared that Lee Gon will be lonely by himself and the worlds will continue to be like this. She asks Lee Lim to make a choice — “Wouldn’t it be better if you went there with me? This is your last chance. Where is the Manpasikjeok?”. Lee Lim states he has sent hell to his nephew and Prime Minister Koo.
Lee Se-jin has an accident
As soon as Se-jin was announced next in line, The King: Eternal Monarch episode 15 brings forward a sudden tragedy. Lady Noh and Lee Gon are distraught to hear that Lee Se-jin died in a car accident and that she was pregnant. Prime Minister Koo is shaken by the news and rings her mother and asks what did she have for dinner — remember in the last episode Koo told her mother to say mackerel; it’s code. Her mother has been swapped by Lee Lim and Koo is devastated.
I’ll be gone for a while
Tae-eul lets the cuffs off Luna and tells her she is off somewhere for a while. She asks Luna to look after her father and also steal something. Tae-eul approaches Sin-jae and asks him if he has the Manpasikjeok — “Give it to me”. She knows Sin-jae has promised to bring Lee Lim in 48 hours and she vows to go there herself — she doesn’t want to stay in this world and endure it alone. Sin-jae refuses to let her have the Manpasikjeok and tells her a secret — “I have feelings for you Tae-eul so how can I let you go? How can I let you die?” Tae-eul begs him for the Manpasikjeok and promises to make up for the times she has upset him.
How does The King: Eternal Monarch episode 15 end?
Lee Gon puts on his ceremonial outfit and Lady Noh prays outside. Lee Gon is ready for his destiny. He tells Lady Noh that she must have felt so lonely keeping his secret — “That book of poems was a gift to you”. The lullaby Lady Noh used to sing to Lee Gon was in that book. Lady Noh asks why he never asked her about it. Lee Gon says it’s because he thought she’d try to go back to her world. Lee Gon asks Lady Noh to let him go again. Lady Noh sobs as he leaves.
Jo Yeong joins Lee Gon on his mission knowing they cannot return. The portal opens. They are ready and they ride in with their horses. The King: Eternal Monarch season 1, episode 15 is the lengthiest one so far and the most in-depth, lining up for what is hopefully an incredible finale.
- Eun-sup and Jo Yeomg say their goodbyes and Eun-sup tries not to be emotional about it. He wishes to meet him again. They hug each other and Eun-sup sobs loudly.
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Daniel Hart is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has operated as Editor-in-Chief since 2017.