This may have been the second to last week for “The Last Empress,” but the drama still had a few surprises up its sleeve — some more logical than others. Episodes 45-48 finally revealed the biggest secrets that “The Last Empress” had been withholding from us, but surrounding these mysteries were some more puzzling scenes and new developments. From the unexpected to the downright bizarre, here are seven moments when “The Last Empress” surprised us with some crazy scenes this week!

Warning: spoilers for Episodes 45-48 below.

1. Hyuk’s recovery

It’s not all that surprising that Hyuk (Shin Sung Rok) survived being pushed off a cliff by Na Wang Sik, but the rest of this scene was wonderfully wacky. From the ragtag group of citizens that discovers Hyuk washed up on shore to the Emperor’s first request upon waking up, this sequence was hilariously absurd — we thought we had seen it all, but we were wrong.

2. The royal newcomer

“The Last Empress” gave us a surprise when it introduced a new character — a member of the royal family, no less — in its second to last week. Empress Eun (Jeon Soo Kyung) is a welcome addition to the drama because she brings some much-needed moral decency to the palace, but it nonetheless seems a bit strange for the drama to suddenly introduce a random estranged royal so close to the end. How did no one mention her before?

3. Na Wang Sik’s new position

It’s also a little crazy that Na Wang Sik (Choi Jin Hyuk) has been appointed to lead the audit of the royal family. Don’t get me wrong, we love that he finally gets the chance to take legal action against the family that has so wronged him, but as a bodyguard by training, is he, you know, qualified to do this?

4. The Empress Dowager’s wild past

In addition to Empress Eun, the drama also introduced another new character (Kim Soo Mi) this week, and to hilarious effect: the sole remaining property holder on the mysterious Chungeum Island is none other than the Empress Dowager’s (Shin Se Kyung) former staff member.

And she knows more about the Empress Dowager’s past as a party animal than the evil woman would care to admit… but we are more than glad to have gotten this hilarious flashback scene!

5. Yoon’s sudden recovery

Another surprise that the drama handled rather oddly was Yoon’s (Oh Seung Yoon) return to consciousness. After we last saw the Prince deep in a coma from which we were told he might never fully recover, it felt rather clunky of “The Last Empress” to suddenly show him in Hyuk’s chambers, not only awake but also perfectly fine. We’re glad Yoon has made a full recovery, but also, what?!

6. The secret of Chungeum Island

At long last, “The Last Empress” revealed the truth behind the mystery of what is on the Empress Dowager’s coveted Chungeum Island. And it is…

A lot of poppies. Which probably means drugs. This is not unsurprising, given how corrupt the Empress Dowager is, but it is crazy nonetheless!

7. The secret behind the Grand Empress Dowager’s death

And finally, the other big reveal of the week was one that we had been waiting a long time for: the truth behind who murdered the Grand Empress Dowager (Park Won Sook). And the answer was something that none of us quite expected: sick with guilt for enabling Hyuk and the Empress Dowager to become so powerful and corrupt, the Grand Empress Dowager was killed by… herself?!

This reveal was definitely shocking, and rather problematic: it seems a bit silly that the old woman would have ended her life without bothering to tell Sunny, who she had grown so fond of — and, in addition, that she would have killed herself knowing that in doing so she was leaving Sunny alone and friendless in the palace with all of her horrible relatives. Perhaps this would have seemed like a more noble sacrifice if the Grand Empress Dowager’s logic made more sense, but as it stands, it seems rather flawed:

It is true that both Hyuk and the Empress Dowager had attempted to kill Grandmother that night. But in leaving evidence of both of their attempts on her life, in reality the Grand Empress Dowager made it impossible to determine who exactly was responsible, causing neither of them to be punished.

Even if her death had led to the exposure of Hyuk and the Empress Dowager, it seems like a much more roundabout and risky way to do so than to simply uncover the truth behind Empress So Hyun’s death, which was what the Grand Empress Dowager had been set on doing before her family members tried to kill her. Grandmother’s suicide felt anticlimactic, but we still have one week left in “The Last Empress,” so it will be interesting to see how the drama wraps up its loose ends!

Hey Soompiers, what did you think of this week’s episodes? Which crazy surprises did you like, and which seemed a little too absurd? Let us know in the comments below!

Catch this week’s episodes of “The Last Empress” on Viki:

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hgordon stays up way too late on weeknights marathoning K-dramas and trying to keep up with the latest K-pop releases.

Currently watching: “The Last Empress,” “My Strange Hero,” and “The Crowned Clown.”
All-time favorite dramas: “Scarlet Heart: Goryeo,” “Goblin,” and “Hwayugi.”
Looking forward to: “Asadal” and “Vagabond.”