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Bad Guy: Episode 17 (Final)

Here we are, the finale! I thought it was better than Episode 16, but frankly that isn’t saying much. At least 16 was entertaining and off-the-wall. This episode, as the wrap-up, was more puzzling.

I know there was a three-episode cut-down and all that scheduling madness. HOWEVER, the drama finished filming two weeks before the last episodes aired. In the world of the live-shoot production system, that is a luxurious timespan with which to work some post-production magic. Or, you know, throw up your hands in defeat and give up.

SONG OF THE DAY

Bad Guy OST – “웃지마 울지마” (Don’t laugh, don’t cry) by 4Men, Jang Hye-jin
[ Download ]

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FINAL EPISODE RECAP

At the psych ward, Jae-in and Tae-sung find Gun-wook’s room empty, so they split up and scour the grounds for him — where, we must note, every single psych-ward extra plays up the I’M CRAZY act like they’re auditioning for a Park Chan-wook movie. Or maybe they were just trying to one-up Gun-wook. Cringes all around.

In Madam Shin’s office, a perfectly sane-looking Gun-wook sits in her chair, his back to her. Rain pounds the windows and lightning gives an eerie strobe effect to the room, which is lit in a blood-washed tint. But when she whirls the chair around to confront the seated figure, he disappears. Poof.

She whirls around — he’s walking away from her. Then he flickers into nonbeing again. Her voice recording starts playing — the one where she gives the veiled kill order — and she is seriously spooked. Is she going mad, or is somebody in possession of a super-elaborate hologram projector? She screams at her invisible tormentor to come out and confront her.

After their unfruitful search at the hospital, Tae-sung drops Jae-in off. He has seemingly come to grips with her choice, assuring her that he won’t come looking for her anymore so she can go and be happy with Gun-wook. I appreciate the maturity, but the writers keep jerking Tae-sung from one extreme to another and it’s jarring. Emotional whiplash.

Jae-in thanks him for his understanding, then hurries away to see Gun-wook. It isn’t until he’s alone that Tae-sung allows himself to drop the smile and feel the blow of losing her.

Assuming Gun-wook has returned home, Jae-in rushes into his apartment excitedly… only to find Tae-ra instead, staring at his Wall of Revenge. For a brief moment we get that “back off from my man” glare so beknownst to the denizens of Jerry Springer, but Tae-ra drops the hauteur when Jae-in reveals that Gun-wook is alive.

Tae-ra registers Jae-in’s disappointment that Gun-wook didn’t recognize her, and guesses that they were closer than she thought. She also makes a few mental connections and asks if she and Gun-wook were in it together to ensnare members of the Hong family. (No, alas, that was PURE COINCIDENCE.) [Just like my hatred of these last two episodes. Pure coincidence. -GF]

Tae-ra accuses Jae-in of breaking up with Tae-sung because he’s no longer the president’s blood son, but that’s news to Jae-in, who hadn’t known this latest development. She answers that it doesn’t matter to her — what matters is that she wants the person for himself, which is why she can’t be with Tae-sung.

Can we take a moment to mourn for Tae-sung, who eats alone at home that evening? Solitary eating can be such a powerfully sad image in dramas (it comes in just below the crying-into-food imagery on the Pathetic-o-Meter — which, we might note, Tae-sung has also done). After Jae-in leaves, all Tae-sung has left of her is the packed food she had made for Gun-wook.

Always a step behind everybody else, the two cops arrive at the mental ward recently vacated by Gun-wook. At least they make up for it with one discovery: a small gadget is affixed to a wall-mounted speaker, which appears to be a video camera in disguise.

Gun-wook has reportedly been transferred to another hospital, and the nurse hands over an envelope left behind by Gun-wook’s guarantor for the cops. Opening it, they find a voice recording device. Lucky for these two that the clues keep falling into their laps, eh?

We don’t hear the contents, but the evidence is strong enough to arrest Madam Shin for ordering Gun-wook’s murder.

Unsurprisingly, she is hardly cooperative during the interrogation and answers questions with “Ask my lawyer.” This leads to the unintentionally hilarious exchange whereby she scoffs that he’s asking questions he knows the answers to, and he demands that she answer them anyway, growling, “Shin Myung-hwa-sshi! Give me your name!” Oh, lulz.

Tae-ra watches anxiously as her mother, joined by her lawyer, is questioned by the police. Super pet peeve: Upon the lawyer’s exit from the room, Tae-ra asks for a status update and the lawyer says, IN FRONT OF A COP, “The evidence is pretty clear so she doesn’t have much room to make excuses.” WTF, lawyer? [Thankfully, the cops are equally stupid, so it’s a wash. -GF]

As Gun-wook is alive, Madam Shin won’t be facing the worst-case legal scenario, though it wasn’t for want of trying on her part. It strikes me that for such a rich and powerful woman, Madam Shin sure has trouble hiring minions who can do their jobs properly.

Tae-sung enters, in shock at the news that Madam Shin tried to kill Gun-wook. He learns that Gun-wook presented proof against her and grows angry, growling that he’ll have to meet him. (So confused at all the weird emotions. So… Gun-wook was just supposed to let her get away with trying to killing him?)

Gun-wook’s partner meets with Secretary Kim. The two speak frankly about Gun-wook’s Ultimate Plan, indicating that they are in cahoots. We aren’t told how long Secretary Kim has been working with them, but it appears to be a recent partnership.

The partner says how Gun-wook had been surprised to find that Tae-sung was as much a victim in this as he was, and says that “one person” has caused quite a lot of grief for everyone. It has the ominous ring of a Madam Shin takedown, or so we can hope.

Infuriated that Gun-wook is responsible for Madam Shin’s arrest (though I’d put the blame on the one who committed the crime, myself…), Tae-sung arrives at Gun-wook’s apartment and bangs on the door. Inside, guess who’s perfectly healthy and sane? So much for the insanity act being real. [Aaaaaaaaaargh! -GF]

Gun-wook ignores Tae-sung’s shouts and looks enigmatically at his lighter, then burns more stuff. Wait, did he steal this lighter back from Madam Shin? How… and when?

Gun-wook narrates resolutely as though addressing Tae-sung: “Even if the life you hated till now is a lie, it changes nothing. The hurt you caused someone while living recklessly doesn’t get erased. Is that unfair? It can’t be helped. That’s you, and that’s me.”

Madam Shin is tried for her crime, and here’s the gist of her cross-examination::

Prosecutor: “Did you order Gun-wook killed?”
Madam Shin: “Nope. Never.”
Prosecutor: “Really? For sure?”
Madam Shin: “Yup.”
Defense lawyer: “The defendant didn’t order a hit.”
Madam Shin: “Why would I? My life is great. He could have been my son. I deny everything.”

(Worst trial ever.)

Next, the recording sent to the cops is submitted as evidence. Now we hear its contents — it’s taken from the scene where she ordered Secretary Kim to take care of Gun-wook, who should have been offed twenty years, and threatens that she is not a patient woman.

Madam Shin is unruffled because the tape isn’t actually that damning — I mean, it implies things, but it’s not conclusive proof. She calmly identifies the voice as hers, but says she never ordered Gun-wook killed. She spoke out of anger, and points out that people say “I’m gonna die” all the time and don’t actually mean to drop dead. You know the prosecution sucks when Madam Shin is the one making the most sense in the courtroom.

She even keeps her cool when Secretary Kim testifies against her and reveals that after getting the order, he had instead warned Gun-wook of what she was planning. (Ah, this explains how he was able to ride with him in the ambulance to the hospital, then act as his guarantor.)

However, one more witness is brought in, and this ruffles her composure. He’s the hit man ordered to kill Gun-wook the third time (or is it fourth?), and he confesses under pressure. After the previous attempt failed, he was ordered to kill Gun-wook.

Clearly she hadn’t anticipated yet another trusted employee turning on her, and she loses it. She shrieks, in her nails-on-a-chalkboard screech, “When did I say that?!” She starts babbling about a setup, insisting that this is a trap and that she has no idea who the guy is.

However, that’s not all: More evidence is submitted, this time a video. Now we see what the hidden devices were for (keen eyes will have noticed a glimpse of this device in Madam Shin’s office as well). The clip shows Madam Shin’s paranoid rant from the top of the episode, where she screams at an invisible Gun-wook about how she should have had him taken out twenty years ago.

Madam Shin shrills at the court that she didn’t kill anyone, but her desperate reaction is pretty damning. After she has regained her composure, she gives her last statement, taking the martyr’s stance that she’ll endure all this to get to the bottom of the mess. You and OJ both.

Now it’s Jae-in’s turn to lose her mind. Just as Madam Shin says she had no reason to kill the boy she once treated as a son, Jae-in stands up IN THE MIDDLE OF COURT and starts screaming that Madam Shin is a lying horrible murderer who ruined Gun-wook’s life and stole away his family. She’s dragged away by the bailiff.

Outside, Old Cop comes up to Jae-in to give her the recorder containing the evidence, explaining that there was additional material on it. Gun-wook’s message says, “Moon Jae-in, are you listening? This is the truth of the world you longed for. What will you do now? You choose. I’ll always be in the same place.”

Having lost her case in this alternate universe where conspiracy-to-commit-murder crimes are tried in a single day, Madam Shin is loaded onto the prison bus. She turns to address Gun-wook, who is watching nearby, and asks how he feels after messing with his father and sister — and reveals that yes, he’s the real Tae-sung.

Explaining that she’d kicked out the true child and brought in the fake, she taunts him with the truth that he lost everything for himself. She smirks, “I won.”

This delivers a huge blow to Gun-wook, as well as Tae-ra, who has overheard. The housekeeper now turns to face him, addressing him as “Young Master,” apologizing for not telling him earlier.

Tae-ra has such a shock at this news that I wondered if she was somehow unaware of her own paternity and thought she and Gun-wook were full siblings. (Gah, this drama has too many birth secrets.) It turns out she does know they’re not related, but her reaction makes me think wistfully of the awesomely dark drama we might have had if they’d actually gone there and made them blood siblings. Oh, Bad Guy, you leave me with so many what-ifs.

With this revelation comes the knowledge that Gun-wook destroyed his own family, and he finds his father. President Hong is conscious and aware, but still recovering and unable to speak as Gun-wook breaks down clutching his hand. Although he’s mostly reacting in remorse, I have to believe there’s a tiny bit of relief mixed in at finally reuniting with his father. [Such a waste of a potentially interesting relationship. -GF]

The two longtime servants muse over the grievous sin they’ve committed against Gun-wook. Secretary Kim explains the reason for his defection from Madam Shin’s ranks, relating how he lost his wife to illness during the time he was serving prison time after taking the fall for the president. When he was released, the president expressed no interest or care about the wife.

That had shattered Kim’s illusions and his unwavering loyalty to Haeshin, and afterward he sought out Gun-wook’s dead parents (and cared for their graves) in an attempt to ease his guilty conscience.

Tae-sung submits his resignation letter to Tae-ra, who tries to talk him out of it. He answers that he wants to live on his own now: “And if I come to work for Haeshin, I’ll come on my own merit. I want to live not because I’m somebody’s son but just as myself.”

He’s come a long way, hasn’t he? Now he acts the part of concerned brother, explaining that at least she and Gun-wook aren’t related. Therefore, he advises her not to agonize too much about it.

With a smile, Tae-ra asks for a hug, and I wonder if it’s a first for them. He’s always been the troublemaking rebel, and she’s always been the censuring older sister who took her parents’ side. Funny how Tae-sung is acting the part of son and brother now, after realizing he’s not their blood relation.

Tae-sung guesses that Tae-ra still cares for Gun-wook and urges her to protect her relationship with him. That prodding is enough to send her to Gun-wook’s apartment, where she finds him on the ground, lost in a daze.

She tells him that she’ll call him by the name Shim Gun-wook for the last time today, as they still have some things to settle. First of all, she doesn’t regret meeting him — she felt thrilled and excited for the first time in a long time. Even though she knew he wasn’t being honest about his interest in Mo-nae, she couldn’t help falling for him.

He falls over, and she rushes to his side. Seeing that he was clutching an old family photo — back when he was part of the Hong family — Tae-ra makes a keen insight, that this all (the revenge plan) was his way of returning to the family. Did he miss it so much?

She confesses that she had a tough time after he was kicked out of the family, and even though she knew it wasn’t his fault, she had felt betrayed by the young Gun-wook. She apologizes for that, and adds that perhaps that thought might be a comfort to him now. Tae-ra’s voice starts wavering with emotion as she says she’ll try to call him Tae-sung.

Tae-ra returns to the auditorium, where she imagines the spirit of the young Tae-sung greeting her enthusiastically. She kneels down and hugs him, and says sorry. The boy cheerily tells her it’s okay.

(Is this whole family prone to hallucinating now? These fantasy bits can be quite evocative when used sparingly… but Little Tae-sung has made an appearance in multiple people’s imaginations now, which would be more apropos were he a paranormal specter and not a metaphorical device.)

Tae-sung interrupts Jae-in’s lunch to tell her to be with Gun-wook now, because he’s bound to be in a lot of pain with the discovery that he was the real Tae-sung all along.

Shocked, Jae-in heads to Gun-wook’s apartment right away, just as Gun-wook takes out a gun. He contemplates it for long moments before lifting it to his temple… which is when Jae-in bursts in.

Quickly, he tosses the gun aside. She approaches silently and puts her arms around him. She speaks consolingly, saying that she understands that he must be feeling upset after harboring his revenge plans for so long.

Gun-wook starts to protest, but emotion wracks his voice and he can barely get the words out. Jae-in says that the family can forgive him, then takes his hand to turn him around to face her. She introduces herself as though this is their first meeting and they’re starting afresh, and prods him to introduce himself as Hong Tae-sung. He struggles, but gets the words out.

Jae-in holds him, and they share a moment as the embrace turns into a kiss. Which is when Mo-nae, back from the States and wearing a peeved expression on her face, arrives at the apartment.

Mo-nae lets herself in, further incensed at the sight of YET another woman making out with Gun-wook. Quickly, she turns and goes without being seen.

(Does nobody in this drama lock their doors, either? Have they been watching Personal Taste? ‘Twould save everyone a lot of grief, is all I’m sayin’.)

Mo-nae waits outside in the shadows, biding her time until the opening presents itself. Jae-in invites her sister over and leaves the apartment to meet her in the street, which is when Mo-nae lets herself in. Gun-wook isn’t in sight so she looks around, further pissed off to see that photo of Jae-in and Gun-wook. So much pain hath that Polaroid wrought.

And then, she sees the gun on the ground and picks it up.

When Gun-wook enters the room, Mo-nae points the gun at Gun-wook and blames him for wrecking her family. All her earlier bitterness of being passed up for her sister is multiplied by her fury at hearing about her family’s misfortunes and the knowledge that Gun-wook was behind it all.

Mo-nae makes her accusations, which are all fairly on the mark, her voice shaking with rage as Gun-wook tries to calm her down. He takes a few steps toward her, but she shrilly yells for him to stay away. How dare he even use her name?

She blames him for making her this way — she’d been happy before — and shrieks, “I wish you were dead!”

She fires the gun.

Out in the street, unaware of any trouble, Jae-in greets her sister. As they chat, Won-in expresses her approval of the match, saying how much better this is than Gun-wook and his rope.

In a bit of dramatic irony, she points out that his rope would have taken him to heaven, which would imply death. Little does she know how prescient that sentiment actually is.

Gun-wook’s not dead, though, and when we return to the scene at the apartment, both parties are still standing in their original positions. Mo-nae looks startled with herself at the gunshot, but when Gun-wook starts to approach her again, she gets all worked up again and keeps the gun fixed on him.

Gun-wook speaks to her gently with a hint of a smile and says, “I’m sorry.” He asks her to call him oppa just once, like old times, but she refuses — he’s nothing to her now.

Finally, Mo-nae lowers the gun and drops it on the ground, the fight sapped out of her. She leaves quickly…

And it’s only now that the camera pans down and reveals to us that he’s been shot. Ahhh!

He falls to the ground and holds his bleeding side, but for some reason he doesn’t call for help. He’s fixated on the gun and grabs a towel to wrap it in, intent on getting rid of the evidence.

Staggering to his feet, Gun-wook leaves the apartment, headed for god knows where, doing his best to stay upright while keeping the gun hidden. He attracts some curious stares but nobody intervenes.

Jae-in goes grocery shopping with her sister, intending to make Gun-wook that home cooking he loves so much. They figure that he must have stepped out on an errand and wait for him to return, but the night grows long.

Finally, Jae-in spots a hand-written note, which says that his adoptive parents from the U.S. called him about an urgent matter, which she interprets to mean that he dashed out on a last-minute trip to the States.

All the while, Gun-wook continues to stagger in the streets until the camera blurs and fades out, denying us confirmation of his whereabouts.

When we fade back in, it’s some unspecified time later. President Hong sits with his daughter, able to speak now, and asks about Tae-sung. She answers that both are doing well, assuring him that “that child” will return someday. He muses that he’d like to bring the whole family together for a nice meal when that happens.

Tae-ra receives a box in the mail, which she opens to find a care package. The note is addressed to So-dam, but the contents are meant for Tae-ra — a DVD of Dirty Dancing, for example, recalls her memory of her long-ago day of playing hooky. The note tells So-dam to smile a lot in front of her mother and is signed from “So-dam’s loving uncle.”

In Jae-in’s apartment, a crane falls as she walks by — it’s the one she found that day in Jeju, upon which Gun-wook had written the names of the Hongs and described them as “family.” Underneath that he’s added “Jae-in, Won-in” and a non-word that seems like he was about to write “family” but cut out one character short.

Won-in brings in a care package from the mail, and this one contains a glass mask, similar to the one Ryu-sensei had made. [One-of-a-kind my ASS! -GF] A note reads:

“How would the world look out of the eyes of the one you loved? Jae-in-ah… I’ve had that thought. If I look at the world through a different gaze, how would it be? Jae-in… how are you? You have to be happy no matter what. If you look at my world through those eyes… I’ll be able to laugh, too. Now, won’t you look at my world instead of me?”

Excited at this indication that Gun-wook is back (clearly she read the note without actually READING the note), Jae-in rushes to his apartment — but it’s empty.

Apparently justice is swift but short in this universe, because Madam Shin is let out and resumes her place in Haeshin Group. Tae-ra takes over, while Tae-sung appears to be traveling on his own, and Mo-nae continues her dilettante lifestyle of yoga lessons and spa treatments.

Meanwhile, Jae-in thinks over Gun-wook’s note, which ends with the words that began this journey: “In the complete darkness of night, it’s hard to tell which is the sky and which is land, and whether the light is fire or stars. Where is it I’m going? Is it heaven? Or is it hell?”

And then! A body is found by the water: Gun-wook.

As Jae-in wanders by the police station, she misses the notice posted directly behind her, which is an announcement of a dead body bearing Gun-wook’s resemblance, replete with back scar, asking for people to help them identify it.

Jae-in wonders, “Gun-wook, where are you? Is the world you’re looking at happy now?”

THE END

 
Bad Guy OST – “어디에” (Where) by Mi (美) [ Download ]

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JAVABEANS’ COMMENTS

WTF, finale?

First, the things that don’t make sense (and there are many):

For instance, the lighter. Gun-wook got that back how? I’m sure there are ways to fanwank this so that it’s technically possible for him to have gotten the lighter back from Madam Shin’s possession, but it doesn’t fit with what we’re shown. It’s a tiny detail, but when you take lots of little details and add them up, the plot logic of everything starts teetering.

Let’s even say we forget the lighter. What about that crane? Jae-in has had it in her possession since the day she found it in Jeju Island, only now it bears her name and Won-in with “famil–” written on it? When did Gun-wook steal the crane, open it up, add to the note, fold it back up, and return it to its place? I don’t doubt that there’s a way to fit this into the technical timeline, but it was clearly done for dramatic impact without considering all the pieces fitting into the overall logic.

What about Madam Shin’s hallucinations? Was she really just suffering from guilty conscience? I don’t buy that she HAS one, so while her mental breakdown is greatly satisfying to watch, I find it out of character. I read a Korean blog that was greatly disgruntled with this point, having thought (and hoped) that perhaps Gun-wook was medicating Madam Shin’s water or some such with the aid of the maid, which would have been great.

Also, it’s ridiculous how she keeps killing people to clean up after herself, which requires more killing, which turns into this whole mad cycle. There’s a Mad TV sketch where a character kills a pet by accident, but is seen by the postman at the door, so he kills the postman to keep him quiet, and then a neighbor comes by and sees the dead postman so he kills the neighbor too, until there’s a ridiculous pile of bodies heaped at the front door.

One murder, chilling. Two murders, probably still chilling. But when murder becomes her go-to solution for managing a problem, it becomes laughable.

Watching Bad Guy is like looking at a piece of lace. At a distance, you’re not quite sure what the pattern is but it looks pretty enough. But then you get up close and realize those are huge honkin’ (plot) HOLES, not lacework.

All that aside, however, my biggest beef is that NOBODY GOT WHAT THEY DESERVED.

I guess Gun-wook let himself die because it was more important to clear his little sister of the shooting, but why didn’t he go for help? The fact that he doesn’t try — and it must have been a survivable wound if he was able to walk all the way to the river — suggests that he was ready to go. Maybe this is the punishment he said he would accept “later,” after his revenge was meted out.

Only, I’ll contend that Gun-wook hasn’t actually done anything deserving karmic retribution. In fact, I recall griping that he’s hardly a bad guy at all, because he didn’t do anything that illegal. He uncovered the Haeshin Group’s corruption and Tae-kyun ended up dying, but it was Tae-kyun’s own behavior that got himself killed — he was the one conducting shady deals, and he was the one drunk driving.

Even if we were arguing karmic retribution, the drama is woefully inconsistent on this score, because Madam Shin gets out of prison in a matter of days. (Perhaps weeks, but if Gun-wook mailed his care packages before dying and they were delivered after Madam Shin was released, we’re talking a very short time.) And Mo-nae must have seen that Gun-wook was shot — so she just gets away with murder? She ends the drama blithely indulging in luxurious activities while Gun-wook’s body lays unclaimed and moldering?

HOW DOES THAT MAKE SENSE. WHAT IN THE HELL. WHY DID I WATCH YOU.

Perhaps one could argue that that was the point, that revenge plots will result in your own downfall. (And murder plots won’t?) So then Bad Guy becomes this exercise in futility, because Gun-wook’s life served no purpose and the ones who created so much misery and stomped on people like bugs are just going to keep on keepin’ on.

A brief note on the acting. Kim Nam-gil was good. Not brilliant — he unfortunately did not live up to his performance in Queen Seon-deok for me, because his Gun-wook was just so damn enigmatic and impassive all the damn time that I couldn’t connect with him or understand him. Han Ga-in reminds me a lot of Han Ye-seul in Will It Snow For Christmas — that is to say, serviceable at times but really nothing worth particular mention. Jung So-min was a lovely surprise and I’ll look forward to seeing her portray a (hopefully) more enjoyable character in Playful Kiss.

Oh Yeon-soo was the shining star in terms of acting technique, and I’m sorry I haven’t mentioned her before. However, as much as I appreciated her performance, I felt absolutely nothing for her character, so my admiration remains on a purely technical level for her restrained, repressed performance. In contrast, even though she was better than Kim Jae-wook, his character was much better written, and therefore his performance had greater impact for me than hers did, because I felt for Tae-sung. That was a trait missing from everyone else, which may explain why there was so much praise directed his way. Is he a better actor than Kim Nam-gil? I wouldn’t say yes or no — but the alchemy of his performance and his character was stronger, for me.

On the direction, music, and cinematography score, this drama gets an A. Maybe A+. On the story score, I don’t even feel able to score it properly because right now there are not enough letters to do it justice.

 
GIRLFRIDAY’S COMMENTS

This whole final episode was one big steaming pile of crap. I hated it with the fire of a thousand suns. With a cherry on top.

Dear writer: you took seventeen episodes to tell us that the rich stay rich and the struggling middle class DIE, people who have money can get away with murder, and that blood purity somehow washes away all sins. Yeah. Hitler thought that too. If you wanted me to be bitter and angry about the human condition, you should have set up your drama to, oh, I don’t know…BE a dark and insightful commentary on the human condition. If I hadn’t donated my heart to science to pay for my overpriced education, I’d have shed a tear.

For the sake of my fragile sanity, I’m going with: Gun-wook died twenty years ago that rainy night along with his dog, and Ghost of Gun-wook has been haunting us ever since. Think about it. It totally works. Yeah. I’m done.

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"For the sake of my fragile sanity, I’m going with: Gun-wook died twenty years ago that rainy night along with his dog, and Ghost of Gun-wook has been haunting us ever since. Think about it. It totally works. Yeah. I’m done."

hahahaah Now, that's 'Bad Guy' in a nutshell!

Heck, I believe you.

... and that's that!

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is this the end?? im not the kind who always like 'the happy ever after' ending. some twisted ending can be amazingly great but this... making me furious! im burning!! breathing with flames and smoke.. headache..

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Woooh! Just finished watching BG, I’m surprised to see a long mix of bad/good comments have been felt here.

BG you’re full of manipulation and realism. Well, the genius of the writer had taken us on an emotional roller coaster ride and had left us with no drama, emptiness and frustration. So after that circle, was it all worth it? Gosh, even the title ‘Bad Guy’ was manipulative… should be called ‘Bad Woman’. BG is not a story about 'REVENGE', it’s just merely a story about a man with miserably tragic fate, argh!!!

I’m shocked to see many whether intentionally or unintentionally haven’t left a thank you note to JB & GF for their insightful recaps. What happened to manners people? In conclusion, I would like to thanks both for your extremely hard work and brilliant recaps!

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kim nam gil is cool.... GREAT ACTING!! but i hate the writter so much!!! stupid ending!!

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i really can't find any reasonable explanation for what happened in the last two episodes. even when i heard gun wook dies in the end, i couldn't imagine sth stupid like this. i just think that both the writer and director watched lots of chan wook park films (as you said). i really can't understand sth so pessimistic. when i first started watching bad guy i thought it was a drama like "cain and abel" but now i found out that it is really far from being even that logical. especially when i think about the ending. i didn't expect a happily ever after finale, but this is too much. i think that the aim of the director is just making viewers cry, that's it! it's just agitation. sorry but ending is the most important thing for me while watching sth and if i hate it, i can easily hate the whole thing.

ohh i can talk about this for hours you know.
i think that even nam gil isn't pleased with the ending, nor the others!

lastly, thanks for all these recaps, we really appreciate it^^

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Thanks so much for telling me the ending! Seriously, I was really thinking about watching this show, because I have heard so much about it, but when I read about how it ends? No way! Ok, it's true. I like the ending to be nicely tied up, where the main characters end happy and they get married and have babies. Not die. And end up sad and alone. I'll admit, the concept was good. Maybe for a movie (one that only wastes about two hours of your life), it would be ok to kill off the main character in the finale. It is a good statement, and leaves the watcher thinking. But after watching it for 17 hours?!?!? By then you are emotionally invested! You LOVE the main guy! You want them to be happy! And they just let him DIE? Nope. Not gonna happen. So again, thanks for the reviews. I'm glad I didn't watch it, simply for my own anger with unhappy endings. I hope you guys liked it better then I think I would.

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OMG. This was the WORST ending ever. I loved the drama till this episode! Why did they choose this freaking ending? I was in love with this drama...now i HATE it.

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Sigh. Not gonna lie, it sucked bad, but now that I take it less seriously (or, like, at all), I'm glad I got the angsty hotness of Tae Sung.

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I love this drama. Although the ending is very sad and kinda frustrating, but it doesn't change my love for the whole drama. I admire the beautiful visual, wonderful music and certainly KNG's awesome performance. Miss him a lot.

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I love this drama sooooooooooooooooooo much.....it was sooo nice.....although it had sad ending....
I love Han Ga In with Kim Nam Gil.....They are g8 Couple..

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I love very much this drama.because of directing,music and acting!
the story has unbelievable ending! but we can not renounce good acting.....all cast were fantastic.....KNG,KSH.HGI these all act very well.....
I love the main couple in this drama ....means HGI and KNG

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I'd still love this drama nonetheless, I luuurve tragic ending and ironic portray of a scene..

I digg it especially when Jae-In stood in front of Announcement Board.. hehehehe, that's just sad.

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I really really love KNG's acting in this drama. He is truly one fine actor who can convey deep, intense feelings without saying any words. I admire how his eyes and facial expression showed change of emotions so perfectly that the audience could intensely feel them. And his voice....his voice is just amazing.

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I think D idea of d story is quite intrsting...but then i bliv i can write d story much better..so it can b more makesense than this craps..

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should have go to this website before i watch this stupid drama!!!!!!!!!!!!what the hell!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!the ending kills everything!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!waste my 17hours...lol....

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What's this about Dirty Dancing and playing hooky? Did I miss anything? Wasn't it Tae Sung who sent both packages? TS was the one who destroyed the mask. He must have sent the package to JI pretending to be GW. Now for the package to Tae-ra TS signed "uncle" meaning it to be from both himself and GW, right?

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If you go to ep 11 in the TR&GW scene where they are locked in the auditorium,It should explain the Dirty dancing bit.

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Well, I loved Bad Guy. from head to toe. Maybe because It's a kind of a drama that I really like to watch. It was fun.

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they just ate my last bit of the brain with tat ending!!!

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Honestly I didn't mind gunwook dying,this is how little emotional connection I felt with him,no growth in his character.KNG is a great actor,so the crappy writers are at fault here.Jae in OMG I thought she was okay for the first 6 episodes,despite being an obvious plot device,but her character is annoying,selfish,shallow,greedy.manipulative and POINTLESS.I HATE how she tries to justify her gold diggery with wanting to live big like the hong sisters,I get that I do,but when you compare her to the character in WHIB who had to work horrible jobs,lost both of her parents,Jae just comes off as greedy and a user(which she is)and so is Gunwook.They both played with people's feelings and honestly both have no sympathy for me..Oh and did I also mention they both have zero romantic chemistry with each other?Who exactly is the idiot who made her the lead,when the OYS is on the same show?The characters who I felt for were Taesung and Tae ra,they both were so desperate for love

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Agree 100% with you. How could Jae-in with that greedy/loser/ugly character play the main actress role? Right, she and GW had absolutely no romantic chemstry. Really awkward. Either they just don't have it or the acting was horrible. Same here, I fell for Tae-sung and Tae-ra. They turned out good people despite being brought up by that evil mother. On the other hand, Goon-wok and Mo-nae resembles the mother being revengeful and selfish.
Writers who end the story with death are just lazy. Writers, please use your brain and think up something other than suicide. C'mon think of the times and stop influencing people to die.

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Out of all the characters I sympathized with Taesung the most.While Gunwook was getting revenge on the children who did nothing to him amd Jae in was being A greedy user,Taesung was just so desperately seeking true love,which he never got in the end.*sobs*Also I think TS is a better person than GW,after TS found the truth about his identity,he didn't go get revenge on the horrible hong family,he chose to be the better person,and chose to forgive them.*Sigh*This is like WHIB all over again,My poor poor Jaemin,I really felt for you T_T

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"Dear writer: you took seventeen episodes to tell us that the rich stay rich and the struggling middle class DIE, people who have money can get away with murder, and that blood purity somehow washes away all sins. Yeah. Hitler thought that too. If you wanted me to be bitter and angry about the human condition, you should have set up your drama to, oh, I don’t know…BE a dark and insightful commentary on the human condition. If I hadn’t donated my heart to science to pay for my overpriced education, I’d have shed a tear."

But that IS reality,in the real world those with power and wealth do get away with Murder and remain in power,while the middle class struggles,and work their whole lives toward the Wealthy.The ending is realistic which is ironic because there is NOTHING realistic about this dreadful drama.I think the message the writer was trying to bring across is "the more things change the more they stay the same".

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goodness!!!! i can't believe that Mo-Nae killed Gun-wook!

I already saw her in this drama but i didn't mind until i watched her new drama "Playful Kiss" and now I'm SO GAGA OVER IT! then i watched this drama and found out that she killed Gun-wook!

But, in Playful Kiss, she's very innocent and not a brat unlike here

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I thought the ending was horrible. Probably because I thought Tae-sung was the most interesting character, and the writers just left him out of the story for the last three episodes.

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Writers are effing morons,they spent time to make a three dimensional character and made him the second lead.I don't know about you people,but Taesung was the only reason I kept watching this mess of a show,and he got the crappiest ending.I totally bawled in ep 16,and could not care less that gunwook died,I could never bring myself to like him.

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I should have read this earlier...then I wouldn't waste my time...it's so stupid in it's 'logic' and karma...those deserve to die a thousand times doesn't and those suffering continue to suffer..those innocent suffer...gosh never seen such disgusting logic in my life...is the author trying to say that in real life is like that...though it might be...but I surely don't want to see it duplicate in the drama world too.

thanks for the recap...should have read next time before watching...

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Major dissapointment for the ending.
Leaves you devastated for sure.

And Kim Nam Gil has a very sexy back :))

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Glad I didn't started watching this.
Thanks so much for the recaps.
Someone told me if the drama started w/ a death it ends w/ one too. Started sad, ends sad. Idk.
This drama seems to confirm my friends theory.

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hahahah i'm glad i didn't star watching this...ly sister wached it and had the same comments: wtf with the end??? So sad that no one get what they diserved

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Thanks for the all the recap, it was awesome (the recaps i mean, not the series). i started watching episode 1 and 2 and decided to check out the ending and all, so started reading the recaps on this website and am i so freaking glad i did it cause even seriously.... WTF!!!!!!!! Even with the 3 hours spent watching the first 2 episodes & reading all the recaps, i feel sooooooooooooo cheated. I want those 3 hours of my life back!!!!! For those who actually watched the whole show, geeez...i really feel for you.

WTF Bidam, or GunWook, or TaeSong or wateveeeer!. WTF!!!!!

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man...I finished this drama 2 weeks ago and I'm still seething about the ending!!!

I'm not upset that he died...for one, I think it was heavily hinted at throughout the drama, and two, I've gotten used to Kdramas having depressing endings.

What gets me pissed is the complete stupidity of the "unidentified body" bit...This makes NO sense because
1. He's (practically) friends with 2 HOMICIDE detectives (esp. the older, "father figure" one. As we saw early in the drama, they do investigate to see if the death is suicide or homicide...FFS they would have recognized him...they followed him around forever!! (hell, if we could recognize his body then they should have)

although, they did act like the 2 dumbest homicide detectives that I have ever seen LOL

2. He was the prime suspect in a murder investigation (before it was ruled a suicide)...they would have had his damn fingerprints...even if they were not all CSI they would have taken his prints and tried to find an ID...

UGH so what did I get from this drama?? It's great to be rich?? TOo bad for everyone else? Yeah, tell me something I don't already know...

I guess it wouldn't bother me so much because I truly loved this series (despite the uneven-ness of the last couple of episodes) I still love it--now when I watch it, I just stop it right after the kiss LOL

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I kiiiiinda liked the Mo Ne ending. Because it shows that she hasn't learned anything. For the entire drama, she follows Gun Wook around "Oppa Oppa" -ing...even when she leaves for the States, she sends Gun Wook the letter asking him to stop Tae Ra.

She never truly lets go of Gun Wook and so it seems fitting that he drives her to the point of murder (like you said, he was making out with yet another woman) and then feels no remorse.

For her, it's the "If I can't have him, no one can," attitude that you might expect from a girl like her who came from a family like hers.

And it shows that while the other characters had at least some consciousness about how they were acting vs. how they SHOULD act, Mo Ne still thinks that she is entitled to Gun Wook.

The rest of the finale I would not defend however. :)

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I thought the drama was very well done although the end was a bit rushed. Apparently nobody is familiar with tragedies? This drama was an obvious tragedy from the beginning. The same family that he vowed to ruin (and does essentially ruin) turns out to be his real family. After finding this out he doesn't want to cause anymore harm. That's why he doesn't get help when he gets shot. It's to save Mo Nae. He takes it as his punishment and willingly receives it. I think to not give the drama a chance just because of the tragic ending is pretty stupid. Romeo & Juliet, King Lear, Hamlet are just some of the greatest plays ever written and they're all tragedies. Oh and to the people who are wrote the recap, I understand that you're trying to add some humor to your critique but you guys seriously come off as nit-picking bitches.... :D

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I think people are mad because of the clumsy execution. Which was caused by KNG's army enlistment; they had to cut 3 episodes.
Sigh. Those 3 episodes could have saved the show.

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Bad Guys never get what they deserve in K dramas. Watch East Of Eden,Cain And Abel, Resurrection,And so on. This is Good drama but bad ending

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I wasted my time on this drama so I can have a shitty ending? I've never wasted my life on something as stupid as this drama, and when everything turned well in the end, they HAD to ruin it and kill the real Tae Seong?! Mone.. I never liked her or the actress lol

I even stayed up till 9 am to finish watching HOPING for a satisfying ending, but this is it? I'll never watch this genre of drama again, seriously I inly watched because I loved most of Kim JaeWook's work. The ONLY good thing worth watching in this drama is Kim JaeWook's character and his acting.

That's all there is to this drama to me.

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W. T. F.

My reaction comes many months late but I just concluded watching this last night. I wonder if saying that I am seething with anger is an overstatement.

I could NOT watch on once Mo Ne held the gun, and so i skipped through the last bits coming here instead to read the recap.

And I have the same bone to pick: "Gun-wook’s life served no purpose and the ones who created so much misery and stomped on people like bugs are just going to keep on keepin’ on." What was that all for in the end? Did he take them down as he originally intended? At least that devil incarnate Madam Shin?

Perhaps I would've been able to accept an ending where he had had the guts to shoot himself after finding out his birth secret. I mean, I can at least live with the writers going down that path of his total descent into madness having found out what he'd done to his own family. He's already a little unhinged anyway so why not have him go all the way? And to end the show with Madam Shin staying incarcerated for life.

BUT instead we have this. He dies in the hands of his half sister (who may or may not know the bullet ultimately took his life) and everyone goes on their own way like nothing happened?

Sorry I had to rant here... and like I said so many months after the show's been over. I had to at least find an outlet somewhere to voice my disappointment/ anger/ frustration. Because plot holes and convenient coincidences aside, this was really enjoyable. But thank you show for the crappiest last episode ever. OK, rant over.

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kill Gun-wook????!!! :'(

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I totally didn't like this last episode. Or the two preceding it. Gun-wook dies?! WTF?! I hated that. The first 14 episodes were okay. They were actually really good. But this? I hated this ending. There are definitely better dramas out there.

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damn drama.. so irritating ending.. at first i thought it was nice and then this ending..arrrggg.. :(

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last episode of bad guy film managed to make me cry...
:'(

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Damn. This drama's ending just light the raging fire in me.
I was like WTH in ep 16. And now, I'm like WTF, show?
Kim Nam Gil, hope you return to acting after serving time is done.

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madam shin got everything she wanted: 1) Tea Ra is president, 2) loser son is out of the family, 3) father is punished for sending her son to the U.S. here he died and even without her knowing she even beat Gun Wook by revealing the truth led to him to become tormented, pulling out the gun and ultimately the tragic ending with the gun! I can’t believe they would let the Madam get away with it all! And yes Gun Wook is dead at the end because they wanted a symbolic ending, Gun Wook struggled the whole time with his identity and in the end he died as an “unidentified person”. Bottom line, ending sucked!!!

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I think This Drama is really2 Good coz it makes so many ppl react so much in anger for the ridiculous-tragic-ENDING's part. I love this drama coz with the best actors-actresses (KNG+OYS etc), an A+ in music/ost and the weird-tragedy-and-Rare's stories, which not usually found in many other dramas.

So The Writer, Producer,Director who made this drama need to CONTINUE this story in SEASON 2 of BAD GUY to finish/answer "THe so many QuestiONs in here" or to smooth this GOOD drama-series... do U agree???

I hope and WISH, WE can watch The SEASON II of BAD GUY will be done next Time n we don't need to anger/sad again in the End after watching...... ^ ^,

WE miss U KNG and OYS ...... be right back !!! ^*,

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I think that if you go back to watching episodes carefully, you can change your blasting review. The glass mask was made just before SGW left Japan for Korea; he was shown in the professor's Ryo workshop, sitting on a bench, waiting for the professor to finish his mask. Episode 6, almost the end.

If you watch carefully, again, you see when the characters lie and pretend, they are shown through the glass, in a green hue. When they are true to their feelings, the picture becomes crystal clear, with vibrant colors. You can see how everything is shifting when Jae In gets in touch with the truth of her feelings for SGW. Whoever made this drama, enhanced it with moving, haunting music. Bravo.

There will be no second season for Bad Guy because he is certainly dead.

Many holes are probably due to shortening of the production; they planted details but had no chance to explain them in depth and make obvious connections.

I would not call this drama a "revenge" drama. It is a psychological drama. Anyway, thanks for the entertaining review.

I hope KNG comes back with more exciting ideas and projects. He is a brilliant actor. Oh, and the actress who played Moon Jae In is very good with weaving emotions with her voice, intonation, and repetitions. I think that the scene at her home, where she says, "I like you. I like you," is her best emotional pull. She outshined KNG there.

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so after all the pain he went through, dying is all he gets. if life is really that unfair what exactly is the point of trying to live to the fullest?

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Yeah, I struggled with this one too. I predicted it to have a terrible ending and I was correct. Watched the first 11 episodes and decided to torture myself with the ending. I hate being right :-)

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I saw this a couple of months ago but I also have to comment on the worse ending drama I have ever seen!! Like many of you, I was WTF!! And I don't even cuss!! The only character I felt sorry for was Tae-Sung, it was wronged from the beginning and continued to be pissed on by many, many others! To include Han Ga In's character, not sure if she or Madam Shin were the worst! I have a big problem with using someone for their wealth and status! This was a big disappointment for me. But it was definitely like a train wreck or a bad accident; you don't want to watch but your eyes keep getting drawn to the scene! As usual, I can depend on your recaps to basically reflect my feelings at the time!!

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Thank you!I thought I was the only one who found taesung the saddest character ever.I don’t give a fuck about gun-wook or jae in or anyone else.Taesung is the only pitiful in this show and most miserable character I’ve ever seen in a drama.I really hoped that in the end taesung would get revenge on jae in for using him for his money,that was low and unforgivable and hopefully kill gunwook for making him fall for jaein and trying to drown him and also kill madam shin for mentally abusing him his entire life and lying about who he is.I also hated the older brother and the younger cop,they were so mean to poor taesung.I would be more okay with all the bad things that happened to him,if someone actually CARED for him,and realize that he was clearly the biggest victim of all.This drama sucked because of the injustice to the 2nd lead,and the main character was just an asshole in my opinion,his anger is misdirected and I didn’t feel sorry for him once!

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I think if the drama was not cut down to 3 episode I think will have happy ending for all of the character in here. And WTF!!! monet ruined it all and the problem is..... it's hard to make a happy ending for a drama like this........

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Thank you!I thought I was the only one who found taesung the saddest character ever.I don't give a fuck about gun-wook or jae in or anyone else.Taesung is the only pitiful in this show and most miserable character I've ever seen in a drama.I really hoped that in the end taesung would get revenge on jae in for using him for his money,that was low and unforgivable and hopefully kill gunwook for making him fall for jaein and trying to drown him and also kill madam shin for mentally abusing him his entire life and lying about who he is.I also hated the older brother and the younger cop,they were so mean to poor taesung.I would be more okay with all the bad things that happened to him,if someone actually CARED for him,and realize that he was clearly the biggest victim of all.This drama sucked because of the injustice to the 2nd lead,and the main character was just an asshole in my opinion,his anger is misdirected and I didn't feel sorry for him once!

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Brilliant Tragedy with a capital T. I bled for GW from the first several episodes. This drama still has me sobbing for the human condition, it was so well done. (OK, plot holes and inconsistencies included; nobody's perfect.) It's awesome coming-full-circle-ness: starting and ending with Lil Sis; the whole question of identity at the beginning and at the end; the water at the beginning and at the end; suicide at the beginning and at the end. Yes, I'll definitely watch this again. Congrats to the writers. Thank you for the recaps and the insightful comments. Helped me a lot. Saludos desde Puerto Rico.

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Though clumsily executed, I loved the overall arc with Greek tragedy type outcomes.

1. The protagonist realises the target of his own vengence is his own real family.
2. There must be (possible) incest.
3. The avenger MUST go crazy and kill himself at the end.

Best of all, nobody ever learns ANYTHING, because we are going to watch the same destructive behaviors in the next 100 k-dramas.

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