I think… I just stumbled into a totally different drama than I had expected. I shed metaphorical blood, sweat, and tears for this drama. Thanks for being worth my time – though I still won’t forgive you for being delayed by London Olympics 2012.
Just this one time.
So the video implicates Hyun Min. That means he’s screwed, right? The court will reconvene in one week as the judges discuss the verdict of the case. Hyun Min goes over to Hyuk Joo and Woo-Young: “It’s not over.” OK – it may not be over, but he sure as hell getting arrested! Hyuk Joo smiles deliciously as he reads him his rights: “You have the right to an attorney… and the right to explain yourself.” Heh.
Media has a field day with this. Hyun Min’s arrest causes shockwaves through the public. He’s held at the interrogation room for questioning, as no official arrest warrant has been issued yet.
Hyuk Joo conducts the questioning, and I wonder if that’s a wise choice… He expresses his hatred for chaebols and their sense of entitlement. Hyun Min can only laugh mockingly. Even with the video as evidence, can Hyuk Joo prove that he killed Nam Sang Won? Is there evidence that he actually killed him? Hyuk Joo: “It’s not just Nam Sang Won. Shin Hyo Jung. Yeom Jae Hee. Han Young Suk. Director Jun. You killed them all!”
Hyun Min: “SO BRING ME THE EVIDENCE!” Wow – this is the first time I ever heard him yell!
Sang Woo and Kang Mi head over to Se Kang offices with a search warrant, demanding to confiscate everything. They order Director Moon to step away from the president’s office, and Kang Mi hurries to the computer. However, the log indicates that a wiping program has already been run. Files as far back to 2011 have all been erased. Kang Mi reminds Director Moon that it’s a crime to delete evidence, but he sees it as simply “taking care of matters for Se Kang Group.” So now, all the possible evidence regarding the vaccine program have been erased.
On top of that, they have no real hard evidence that Hyun Min poisoned Nam Sang Won. The prosecution is getting pressure to close the case as every day is more money being spent. This frustrates Hyuk Joo even more, as he feels that the rich can get away with their crimes just because they have money. Woo-Young disagrees – it’s the information that Hyun Min holds that has more power. Their last hope in stopping him is getting an arrest warrant.
Yeon Joo buys a drink for Seung Yoon at a cafe with an offer. Since Seung Yoon knew Hades for a while, and Hades is Ki Young/Woo-Young, she wants Seung Yoon to write an article on his motives for the trial. If it’s good, Yeon Joo will promise her a position on the newspaper’s daily news beat. Seung Yoon – say no!
Hyun Min is unfazed when Woo-Young enters his interrogation room, knowing that he’ll find more ways to force Woo-Young to take a DNA test. What he didn’t expect was for Woo-Young to be letting him go; the arrest warrant was denied. Hyun Min: “Just give up. The only person who can catch me… is me.” And he walks out of the bureau, a free man.
That evening, Hyuk Joo finds Seung Yoon waiting by his car. Already, he knows that she’s going to ask about Park Ki Young and Kim Woo Hyun for her article. Seung Yoon is disappointed that he won’t trust her, and feels that he treats her like she’s Yeon Joo. Well.. you’re both reporters… He doesn’t say a word and goes into his car, and turns on the radio. There’s a weather report about a typhoon coming soon.
Seeing that Seung Yoon is in her skimpy jacket, short shorts, and on a motorbike, he blocks her path and tells her to follow him; he’s got a scoop for her. He takes her to a sportswear store and buys her a cute purple rain jacket, and some orange rain boots. The scoop? There’ll be a typhoon! Aww… it’s like he sees her as a daughter. (I hope that’s how he sees her…)
Woo-Young stays at work late, mulling over the case and Hyun Min. Before she leaves for the day, Kang Mi stops by to assure him that the case will end well for them. It can only end well.
Ha. The next day at the verdict hearing, Hyun Min is declared… not guilty. No surprise there. Woo-Young is now seeking justice. He wanted to do everything legally, without hacking, to exact proper judgment upon Hyun Min. Since that method failed, Woo-Young is going to things his way. Aw yeah – hacking!?
Before Kang Mi and Sang Woo can stop him, he’s already taken the Dae Young servers with him. He calls up Hyun Min with a simple threat: information is powerful, but if it’s made public, it loses its power. Next thing Hyun Min knows, as his car passes by a jumbotron, he sees a message flash by: Jo Hyun Min’s secret X-List. The X-List has all the powerful people he’s bribed to be on his side. When the X-List arrives at a stock trading company’s inbox, a manager makes the decision to sell all Se Kang stocks, making its price drop.
Chief Shin is busy entertaining some guests, who applaud him for being the most likely candidate to be Commissioner of the entire police department. His happiness fades when Hyuk Joo interrupts this social meeting. Hyuk Joo shows him the list, which has gone viral online, and includes the chief’s name. Chief Shin thought that they were going to make sure none of that information leaked out. Instead of denying it, Hyuk Joo just reminds him that aside from appearing on this X-List, he also gave potassium chloride to Kim Suk Joon that landed him in the hospital. Chief Shin should just resign and disappear. Otherwise, internal investigations are coming after him.
Yeon Joo receives a call regarding the list, but her colleagues tell her of an article that’s already been posted about it. Of course – that article came from True Story, written by none other than Seung Yoon. Woo-Young had contacted her about the list going viral, and asked her to write the story about it. Then, he helped her article be one of the top 10 searched news, and made sure that Jo Hyun Min’s list is in the top 10 searched topics.
The news spreads quickly, and suddenly Hyun Min is in deep water. One of his directors comes barging in, angry over being betrayed by Hyun Min. He can expect to be all alone now, with no one to defend him.
Kang Mi searches for Woo-Young, hoping to help him with whatever it is he’s doing. The news of the list is becoming a serious matter, with the high possibility of a case being opened to investigate Hyun Min – just after he got acquitted too! As Hyun Min wallows in deep thought in his office, Director Moon informs him that the Board of Directors have called a meeting (to oust him), and the prosecutors have issued a summons (to investigate and hopefully indict him). He suggests that Hyun Min disappear for a while, but that is the last thing the President of Se Kang wants to do right now.
He goes back home instead – the apartment right across from Shin Hyo Jung’s, and the apartment that we have not seen him go into in a very long time. He sits in the darkness, only to find an uninvited guest: Woo-Young.
“You’re late,” Woo-Young says. Hyun Min’s surprised at how Woo-Young ever found him, since the apartment is listed under a different person’s name. However, Woo-Young’s pretty resourceful. When Kang Mi joined to help him earlier in the day, Woo-Young had located Hyo Jung’s digital camera, which she handed off to her stylist. The stylist told him that the memory card had no photos in it, but since he’s a hacker, he managed to restore all the deleted files. In it were pictures of Hyo Jung in front of a window. Kang Mi recognizes the background to be the skyline out of Hyo Jung’s apartment. However the angle’s a bit different, so Woo-Young figured that it came from the apartment… across the hall?
Hyun Min isn’t scared of Woo-Young now. Even if Woo-Young thinks he’s won, Hyun Min is sure people will forget about it after some time passes. If a more shocking event occurs on the morrow, they’ll forget about Hyun Min’s list. (I hope you’re not planning a massacre then…)
But Woo-Young isn’t here to threaten or arrest him. He just wanted to know why Hyun Min killed Hyo Jung. Ha – like Hyun Min’s going to tell him? So he weaves a possible storyline:
Back in May 2011, Hyo Jung and Hyun Min met up at Hae Myung resort, where he first heard that Nam Sang Won was going to give his laptop with the beta vaccine program to Woo Hyun. He also heard that Nam had a meeting with Jae Min that evening too. He planned to kill Nam then, and frame it on Jae Min. He involved Woo Hyun to make him an unwitting accomplice.
However, he never expected Hyo Jung to come out and record the whole thing. He must have thought that Hyo Jung was asleep from exhaustion, but she really wasn’t. She played with her new Se Kang phone, and then quietly opened the door to see the three men sitting for drinks. She started recording the video (since the phone has such a great camera) when Hyun Min got up to get the glasses and the alcohol, and then poured it for Nam and Woo Hyun. Then Nam choked, and collapsed before her very eyes.
Hyo Jung quickly shut the door, aghast at what she just saw. She rushed to dial for help, but before she could press “call,” she heard the front door closing, and Hyun Min heading to the room. Hyo Jung slid the phone under her pillow and hid beneath the covers. Hyun Min came in to tell her that he needed to go back to Seoul, so she’d need to get ready to leave too. Hyo Jung could barely control her shaking and her fear of Hyun Min, but he mistook it for a cold.
Woo-Young wonders if she confessed to having taken the video, and that’s why Hyun Min killed her. Maybe, if Hyun Min just turned himself in back then, they wouldn’t have reached this point now. Hyun Min: “I should get punished? My father died in front of me to protect me, but did they (Kyung Shin and Co.) get punished? They got more powerful and richer.” To complete his revenge, Hyun Min needed to be cruel and ruthless; only then would he be able to protect the one thing he wants – power.
But Woo-Young adds that Hyun Min’s already lost power, and it began with finding the phone that Hyo Jung used to record the video. It turns out, after Kang Mi had visited Hyo Jung’s aunt, she was told that Hyo Jung’s mother (the aunt’s sister – not Hyo Jung’s sister) visited the grave often. She may have left some of Hyo Jung’s belongings there.
Kang Mi heads the the cemetery – and what luck! The Se Kang phone is there! Without looking too worse for the wear! If only Hyun Min had visited her grave often, he would have seen that phone and destroyed it before the Cy-Team got to it.
Woo-Young adds that the video shown in court was the complete video. However, the “Phantom” video file that he found on Hyo Jung’s computer that evening was slightly different. In the “Phantom” file, Hyun Min’s face was never shown. That means, when she was thinking of reporting his crimes, she thought better of it, and didn’t want Hyun Min to be targeted. She loved him, and it must have been too hard on her to give him up to the police like that.
Woo-Young: “She loved you… and she was pregnant with your child.”
Hyun Min’s eyes grow wide: Woo-Young’s a liar!! She had told him that she wasn’t pregnant! Clearly he never knew. Woo-Young shows him the phone in its plastic evidence bag. In it was more than just the Nam Sang Won video. If only Hyun Min had stopped his revenge when Hyo Jung had asked him to, things would have turned out better. Woo-Young leaves the apartment, and the ‘Phantom of the Opera’ music starts up again!
Oh… how could we close this series without it showing up one more time! But at least this time we get the full song.
Woo-Young slowly makes his way down the building. Hyun Min slowly reaches for the phone and opens up the pictures folder. Inside are pictures of the baby’s sonogram. And it was dated May 29 – the day he killed her. Hyun Min was a papa. When he saw her pick up a pregnancy test earlier, he was ticked off, and so she must have lied about being pregnant.
The song reaches its final crescendo. Woo-Young steps out of the building and down the steps. Things are becoming a bit too deja-vu for my liking…
A crash of glass. A thud. A scream.
Hyun Min’s dead, having jumped out of the same window he pushed Hyo Jung out of. Yeah. Whoa. It’s all over. The phantom is dead. But now – so is Park Ki Young.
Some time later, Woo-Young visits the cemetery where Woo Hyun’s ashes are kept with Park Ki Young’s name on it. He’s not alone – Seon Woo has joined him too. Woo-Young introduces Seon Woo to his “friend” and tells him to say his greetings. It’s so sad, because Seon Woo is basically greeting his father. But they’ll visit again once Suk Joon gets better. Yay! Grandpa Suk Joon survives!
Seung Yoon calls Hyuk Joo out to a cafe and gives him a doe-eyed look.
Seung Yoon: I’ll give you permission.
Hyuk Joo: For what?
Seung Yoon: For us to date.
Hyuk Joo: *Ditto to Kaedejun’s comment – without the caps lock*
Seung Yoon: However – with one condition. You can’t lie.
Hyuk Joo: You seem to be having fun by yourself.
Seung Yoon: Kim Woo Hyun is Park Ki Young – right!?
*Pause for effect*
Hyuk Joo: He’s really not!
Kudos to Hyuk Joo for sticking to it til the end. It’s all over now, and yet he still won’t say the truth. Seung Yoon threatens: “Fine, you don’t want to go out with me? I’ll count to three! One…. TWOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO… three!” Hyuk Joo gives in. Ok! They can date! However, just this one time, Kim Woo Hyun is still Kim Woo Hyun. He leaves, and as soon as his back is turned, Hyuk Joo gets the biggest, childish grin on his face.
Seung Yoon understands – Hyuk Joo won’t ever lie to her, except for this once. She returns to her home and finds the document with her notes on Woo-Young. Ever since she saw him when she broke into a victim’s apartment, she’s had a nagging feeling that he was really Ki Young. The notes could have been used as an article or evidence questioning his identity. But Seung Yoon deletes the file for good.
Kang Mi meets Woo-Young in a park, noting the weirdness of having everything be over, and so many people having died, and yet the world moves on. Things may appear peaceful on the outside, but full of turmoil on the inside. Kang Mi congratulates Woo-Young on being a true officer now. He doesn’t think he’s a good policeman, and he warns her not to trust him. She then hands him her phone and makes him listen to Woo Hyun’s message of being a great cop, and to catch the criminal no matter what.
It’s certainly a heartening message for Woo-Young.
Fast forward a little more in the future. A bunch of cadets are waiting in a classroom for a lecture on cyber crime. Their guest lecturer makes her way down the hallway, reading the cadets’ recent text messages on her phone. She walks in, and calls out a number: “Are you the one who wrote, ‘Today’s lecturer is the “Beauty” Yoo Kang Mi’?” Yeah – you’re caught dude! She introduces herself to the class as not the “Beauty” but “Crazy Girl” Yoo Kang Mi.
Seriously? You’re ripping off of Mad Cow’s nickname now?
Reminiscent of the first episode, she leads the lecture on how criminals now use games and credit card companies as fronts for identity theft. They would even pose as investigation bureaus and call up their target, lying that the target’s information is being used by criminals. They would then tell the target to input their credit card number into a website so that they can run an investigation. But that website just goes straight to their servers and is used for identity theft.
As Kang Mi is detailing it, Hyuk Joo and Sang Woo lead a team of officers to the criminals’ hideout. They burst in just as they finish getting one more target, and beat every single one to the ground before they can turn off the computers. One criminal had gone out for snacks, but saw the cops in the hallway and ran out the building.
Except… he bumps into a well-suited Woo-Young instead. Criminal: “Who are you?” Woo-Young: “I’m a policeman of South Korea.” Me: “Woohoo!”
Sang Woo comes across one computer where a self-destruct program has already been implemented. The criminals smirk, thinking that they’ve won, since Sang Woo can’t stop it. Good thing Woo-Young comes in on time. He calmly sits in front of the computer and gives Hyuk Joo a small shake in the head. Hyuk Joo has everyone get out of the room except for him and Sang Woo.
Woo-Young inserts his trusty USB and runs the Hades hacking program, which stops the self-destruct program from completing his job.
Yay! The Cy-Team wins again! See. Having a hacker as a cop is a good thing.
This has got to be one of the most cheerful and satisfying endings for me ever. When it ended happily, I seriously thought, “Wait – what drama am I watching? Do they really get their happy endings?! Oh my God! They do!” After Sign I came into this drama with high expectations, but I was preparing myself for a main good character to die. It kinda does happen in the first couple of episodes, but not in a way that made me feel a severe loss (’cause technically, the face of Woo Hyun is still around). But to have the Cy-Team intact makes me happy. To not have a romance between Kang Mi and Woo-Young makes me happy.
To have a romance between Hyuk Joo and Seung Yoon is a little weird. Seriously, people would think he’s a sugar daddy because he’s old enough to be her dad! Chemistry be damned! (Although, they did get a lot of cute scenes together.) They should have gotten an actress who at least looked older, or was taller! Anyways – Hyuk Joo’s giddy expression kind of makes up for it. If Mad Cow is happy, then I’m happy.
Hyun Min’s death was devastating, but in a good way. As soon as the montage of Woo-Young walking out the building happened, I knew he was going to commit suicide. Things like to fall at Woo-Young’s feet, whether it be bodies, computers, or burdens. It’s sad that after everything he went through, the only thing he could do was kill himself. He could barely enjoy the fruits of his labor. He lost everything – and more – with revenge. Sometimes in K-dramas revenge works in the best of ways, and sometimes, like here, it works terribly. I’m a bit surprised that the final straw for him was Hyo Jung having a baby. I never felt that he truly loved her, and it’s probably because he so easily and ruthlessly killed her. But I guess he did – and he actually did want that baby.
It’s kudos to Eom Ki Joon‘s acting that I actually felt sympathy for his character. He humanized his villain just enough for us to truly understand his motives, but was cold-blooded enough for us to not like him. I truly enjoyed watching his performance out of everyone in the cast. His microscopic facial expressions told us so much about his thoughts and feelings that I really felt like I understood him. It was an art of subtlety that was obvious enough, but not too over-the-top.
It’s very different from So Ji Sub‘s acting, which I’d say is super understated to the point of almost wooden. He does loosen up a bit as the series goes on, but his eyebrows are constantly knitted together, and he gives you that intense blank stare so much that I hope his face is not frozen like that. Smile more, So Ji Sub! It can’t hurt! Plus, Daniel Choi smiled a lot, and you were supposed to be channeling him!
I loved this series as a whole, and in many ways it mirrors Sign for me. It follows a very similar formula, and instead of a main character’s death occurring literally, it has Ki Young’s “identity death” as the metaphorical death of a main character. It had many twists and turns, and was at times very dark to very fast paced, to very comedic. (“Twinkle” anyone?) It never insulted my intelligence, but I was grateful when they explained how the hell they got certain evidences. (Not everyone understands computer speak, yunno.) I found myself enjoying each actor’s performance (including Lee Yeon Hee, believe it or not, and to an extent, So Ji Sub) because they managed to create endearing personalities for their characters. There was always that extra smile, smirk, gasp, or earnestness that made me like them more. (Sang Woo – I’m especially looking at you.)
Here’s to the writer’s next endeavor – and now I have hope that she can write something a little happier.
- Ghost: Episode 19
- Ghost: Episode 18
- Ghost: Episode 17
- Ghost: Episode 16
- Ghost: Episode 15
- Ghost: Episode 14
- Ghost: Episode 13
- Ghost: Episode 12
- Ghost: Episode 11
- Ghost: Episode 10
- Ghost: Episode 9
- Ghost: Episode 8
- Ghost: Episode 7
- Ghost: Episode 6
- Ghost: Episode 5
- Ghost: Episode 4
- Ghost: Episode 3
- Ghost: Episode 2
- Ghost: Episode 1