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Series / Scholar Who Walks the Night

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Scholar Who Walks the Night (밤을 걷는 선비) is a 2015 twenty-episode Korean Drama, based on the Manhwa of the same name.

Set in an alternate version of the Joseon dynasty, a cross-dressing bookseller struggling to make ends meet named Jo Yang Seon (Lee Yu Bi) meets the handsome and mysterious scholar Kim Sung Yeol (Lee Joon Gi). Unfortunately for Yang Seon, Sung Yeol is a vampire, and he is haunted by the loss of his first love Lee Myung Hee over a century ago. Seeking revenge for her death, things are further complicated when he meets Myung Hee's present-day Doppelgänger Choi Hye Ryung (Kim So Eun), an aloof nobleman's daughter. Meanwhile, the evil vampire Gwi (Lee Soo Hyuk) responsible for Myung Hee's death resides in the royal palace and uses his powers and political machinations to prevent the Crown Prince (Shim Chang Min) from ascending the throne.


  • Accidental Murder: Gwi doesn't mean to kill Hye Ryung, but when he lashes out at her he cuts her throat.
  • Antagonist in Mourning: Gwi and Hye Ryung spend years using and manipulating each other. When Hye Ryung dies at Gwi's hand, he mourns her and reflects that he wanted to keep her by his side for thousands of years.
  • Bookworm: Yang Seon.
  • Combat Parkour: Sung Yeol is fond of this.
  • Daywalking Vampire: Sung Yeol can walk around during the day just fine, only experiencing discomfort/burning when sunlight touches his skin directly.
  • Death by Origin Story: Myung Hee.
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight: Myung Hee again.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Even Gwi is shocked that Hye Ryung's father chooses to serve his daughter's murderer just to save his own life.
  • Gorgeous Period Dress: It's a drama full of Joseon nobles. Gwi's embroidered robe particularly springs to mind.
  • Guyliner: Sung Yeol and Gwi both wear eyeliner.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Myung Hee running into Gwi's knife so that Sung Yeol can feed on her and survive.
  • Identical Stranger: Hye Ryung looks exactly like Myung Hee.
  • It's All My Fault: Sung Yeol murmurs this while unconscious and reliving Myung Hee's death.
  • Masquerading As the Unseen: Lee Yoon, the Crown prince pretends to be the Lustful Scholar, the Pen Name of the Crown Prince a century prior. This leads to much confusion for Sung Yeol.
  • Mistaken for Gay: Some gisaengs assume Sung Yeol is gay because he has no interest in them, and warn Yang Seon that 'he' should watch out, since a feminine guy like him is probably Sung Yeol's type.
  • Please Wake Up: Yang Seon begs her father's corpse to wake up when she realises he's dead.
  • Plucky Girl: Yang Seon seems to be shaping up to this. Despite being chased by loan sharks, nearly eaten by the undead, and under the pressure of supporting her entire family, she's still determined to help Sung Yeol, despite the dangers. And she finds time to dance in the rain.
  • Pretty Boy: Sung Yeol and Gwi are both very pretty. Especially Gwi.
  • Puppet King: It's implied a number of the current dynasty's Kings have been these thanks to Gwi.
  • Raised as the Opposite Gender: A strange case with Yang Seon, who was raised, dressed and acted like a boy after an accident when she was little caused a monk to advise the family to do so (the show so far hasn't really expanded on this). However, she still thinks of herself as a woman, as do her relatives.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: Gwi's eyes turn red when he's about to kill someone.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: In contrast to the Kings, all of the Crown Princes mentioned in the show have been actively trying to stop Gwi and free Joseon from his influence. it doesn't go well for the first two, unfortunately.
  • Slashed Throat:
    • The king kills himself by cutting his own throat.
    • Hye Ryung dies after Gwi cuts her throat.
  • Thinking Out Loud: Yang Seon does this quite often.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Gwi goes through one after Hye Ryung's death. It includes carrying her corpse back to his lair and telling her he didn't mean to kill her, then murdering most of the court officials.