After their family was wrongfully persecuted due to the machinations of a corrupt official, Dugu Jia Luo held strict expectations for herself to be independent and strong even at a young age. Her husband Yang Jian is a man of great spirit. He is a warrior, skilled in battle, who rises up the ranks to become the Emperor. With Dugu Jia Luo by his side, they succeed in uniting the country under the Sui Dynasty. The husband and wife stay in a monogamous relationship despite their imperial status and come to be revered by people as the two saints due to their extraordinary contributions to a new golden age.
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Cast & Credits
It largely follows the life of the main couple, almost exactly the same as the wiki history on Empress Dugu. The biggest different from other historical dramas is that Dugu Jialuo's personality and values never change throughout the show. There's no turning ruthless or cold hearted. She is always as she started: well-meaning and smart. She never does anything out of hatred or revenge, and she puts the people and the country before all else - except her marriage with her husband. The side characters are all the ones who change, which sets a contrast to the leads. I think this is appropriate and showcases how history views them. They were known to be good rulers, both frugal, loyal and innovative.
To some viewers, this might mean the story isn't 'exciting' or 'dramatic' enough, but it sort of reflects life. There's quite a few time jumps with historical narration since life isn't always that exciting. I personally think that the drama achieved what they were going for which is to showcase the loyal love of this couple and their sacrifices to their country. Though they may have been a near perfect couple, others around them can't be as perfect in the face of power and greed. Some of these other characters truly frustrate you when you compare their life choices with those of the perfect couple. This was a well made comparison. I also think the main actresses' reactions to situations are pretty realistic. She can easily be hurt and feels remorse but still smart enough to calm down and think clearly.
Overall, watch if you like history, want some good life lessons and wish you had a husband/wife like that. Not really recommended for those seeking intense action and a fast pace.
Also what music? Not memorable during the episodes really... You really only notice it during the opening/ending.