Shark: Episode 5
Up until now, I had been enjoying Shark the way you generally enjoy a good piece of art—with appreciation and a dash of emotional distance. I could name all the things I liked about it and the very few things I wasn’t the biggest fan of, and while each episode had me invested, I couldn’t say that there was a huge emotional hook pulling me forward as much as plain curiosity for an interesting story. Which was plenty enough already.
But I’m happy to report that this is the episode that upped some stakes I could really sink my teeth into, even though they’re morally ambiguous and personally conflicting stakes. Why would we ever want less drama, anyway?
Lastly, as far as ratings go, Shark is steadily ticking upward, with this episode bringing in 8.8%.
SONG OF THE DAY
Jeong Dong-ha – “슬픈 동화 (Sad Story)” from the OST. [ Download ]
EPISODE 5 RECAP
Cold open: Hae-woo approaches a sky blue wall with a huge red circle painted on it, the very same symbol left on Detective Jung’s body. She steels herself and steps forward…
Back in the present, Hae-woo approaches Yi-soo with curiosity, asking how he came to be at the lake. He explains that he’s meeting her grandfather at the cabin on business, which works well enough.
While Grandpa Jo and Daddy Jo are en route to the cabin, Daddy Jo complains about how they’re going out of their way for someone who’s not all that important, but Grandpa shuts him up by mentioning how on edge he’s been since Detective Jung died. “His death has nothing to do with me,” Daddy Jo insists.
Hae-woo does some similar backpedaling with Yi-soo on the issue of his importance, stuttering out that she was expecting her grandfather’s special guest to be… more imposing, somehow. So in order to recover from all that, she starts referring to him as sunsaengnim (a word for teacher that also denotes extra respect and seniority), which he admits makes him feel pretty important. Hah.
He asks her the name of the lake, which she says she just calls “the lake.” She finally admits how bad she feels for crying on him on her wedding day, explaining that she’s not so good at controlling her emotions. Yi-soo is nice enough to claim that it was his mistake in the first place.
As for the lake, Hae-woo tells a story of a thousand-year-old golden fish who would lure men into the water, only for them to never return. Weirdly enough, when Hae-woo claims it’s just a legend, Yi-soo replies, “It could be the truth.” O-kay, except for the fact that it isn’t.
But then he says what he (as Yi-soo Lite) once did when they were younger, standing at this exact same spot: “Stars must look very beautiful from here.” Hae-woo’s eyes fill with tears again as she remembers Yi-soo. Why is he deliberately torturing this poor girl?
Yi-soo walks behind her on the path back to the cabin, and we see his eyes fill with longing as he reaches out toward her back, wanting so much to touch her but unable to let himself. A sudden gust of wind blows her scarf away, but he catches it for her and wordlessly hands it back. (In glorious slow motion, no less, though I can’t figure out why it must be so glorious.)
Joon-young finds them in this moment, and Yi-soo officially introduces himself as Kim Jun of Giant Hotel, a detail he’d left out in their earlier meetings so as not to burden them with his importance. Joon-young is friendly but curt, and my guess is that he’s already done a lot of research on him—they run competing hotels now, after all.
As he leads Hae-woo back to the cabin, she sends one glance back at Yi-soo. These two are going to be trouble. Delicious, dramatic trouble.
Detective Byun dodges questions about his new case from adopted-daugher Yi-hyun, though she’s not deterred—she has to know if this is about Yi-soo’s accident. She seems to be hopeful about the whole affair, claiming: “Maybe Oppa is still alive.”
Daddy Jo gossips about Yi-soo/Jun Yoshimura when he’s late for their business dinner, showing that he hasn’t stopped looking down on others even after all these years.
Yi-soo shows up to interrupt the chatter and formally introduces himself to Grandpa Jo, as if they’re meeting for the first time. And for Grandpa Jo, it is their first meeting.
Grandpa Jo heaps praise and compliments on Yi-soo, believing him to be the real son of Junichiro, whom he claims is his close friend. (I’m sure Junichiro would have something to say about that.) He even claims Yi-soo as his grandson since he and Junichiro are so close, and it starts to get a little much as Grandpa Jo just keeps complimenting and complimenting, acting much sweeter than we know he is.
But Hae-woo doesn’t know her grandfather like that, so she adds with a warm smile, “The person I admire the most is my grandfather.” Yikes. So the real truth, when it hits, is going to hit hard.
Daddy Jo is his usual unbearably awful self, but Yi-soo gets in his own barb by proving that he heard the gossip Daddy Jo was spewing at the table about Junichiro being a former Yakuza member. This doesn’t phase Daddy Jo, who defends what he said by claiming that honesty is what he does best, even if that means he’s not good at hiding things.
Their conversation grows tense as Daddy Jo accuses Yi-soo of being the quiet type who conceals his true intentions while looking through others, while he’s forthright and honest.
“I don’t think there’s anyone who’s completely honest,” Yi-soo calmly replies. “Everyone hides their true self. Sometimes, in order to hide their true self, people pretend to be honest.” Burn.
Meanwhile, a motorcyclist who cut in front of the Jo’s on the way over delivers a package to the cabin, which Mrs. Park brings to Hae-woo at the table. She recognizes Yi-soo from the lake and shoots him the most confused/surprised/weirded-out glance.
Detective Byun is trying to track down Detective Jung’s murderer, and finds that the last call he made that wasn’t to Hae-woo was to her father Curiouser and curiouser.
Hae-woo opens the package at the table, and it’s a gold Rolex, just like the one her father had down to the inscription on the back. It couldn’t be his same watch, could it? He threw that thing into the river. (Unless Yi-soo is Aquaman and got his shark friends to help him out.)
Daddy Jo starts sweating at the sight of the watch, and Hae-woo’s expression grows serious. Yi-soo, the mastermind behind the package, smirks to see Daddy Jo trembling.
And only now does Detective Byun begin to realize that Yi-soo and his father’s death link to Daddy Jo, the man who dropped his watch at the scene.
While driving home, Yi-soo reaches his hand out of the window as he remembers the sensation of catching Hae-woo’s scarf, while Hae-woo remembers Past Yi-soo’s phone call about the hardships she would have to endure while she clutches the watch in the present. She seems to have an idea of where this all will lead.
Daddy Jo makes a frantic call to Prosecutor Oh to demand that he use all his power to get Hae-woo off the case, but even the prosecutor knows that won’t stop her.
While Daddy Jo thinks that someone can’t be after him for just a “simple” hit-and-run, Prosecutor Oh reveals that it’s more than that—everyone involved in that case from twelve years ago is dead. Ergo, the mystery man’s motives in sending the watch can’t be so simple.
Hae-woo confronts her father with the watch: “Twelve years ago, it was you who caused that hit-and-run accident, not Yi-soo’s father.” This is bad news bears.
Something seems up with Joon-young, since he calls his personal secretary to do some checking up now that he caught a glimpse of the watch. How much does he know?
Hae-woo has figured it all out, even though the watch she’s holding is new—which means her father got rid of the watch at the crime scene. And for that to happen, Detective Jung had to be involved to hide the watch in the first place… which means her father bribed him. Wow. She’s sharp.
The only deviation from her deductions versus what actually happened is in her asking her father where he was on the day Detective Jung was murdered. Yikes. She’s outright accusing her father of murder, which causes him to defensively declare that she’s no longer his child. “How can a daughter accuse her father of murder?”
Hae-woo’s not having an easy time either, but she knows that the watch was sent to her as a message. And after some self-reflection, she gets another picture message like the one that led her to the library, though this time it’s of the back of a bus. Like before, Detective Byun also received the same text.
Joon-young asks Hae-woo about what’s on her mind, and after some hesitation she tells him that her and Detective Byun have been receiving the same messages with regard to Yi-soo’s case. He’s supportive but concerned, and tells her that it might be better for her to leave the case to someone else.
“My mind tells me to run away, but my heart won’t allow it,” she admits. But to placate him, she claims she’ll leave the case if it becomes too hard for her.
The kid who originally witnessed the accident goes to the hospital to visit his grandfather, only to find that all the bills were paid for (along with an upgrade to a VIP room) by a relative. The kid runs out to see who it was, but he doesn’t notice Yi-soo standing next to him. That’s his mysterious “relative.”
He calls Soo-hyun to see if perhaps he paid for it, since he previously gave him money for his grandfather’s surgery, but Soo-hyun says no. Considering that the kid has no relatives to help with his expenses, he’s stumped as to who’s responsible. (But it also begs the question: Why did Soo-hyun give him money in the first place?)
Daddy Jo has an anxiety attack over the hit-and-run case with his father, who doesn’t seem to take things seriously until his son mentions that Hae-woo knows about the case. Daddy Jo’s chief worry is about losing face in front of her, to which Grandpa Jo angrily snaps that saving face isn’t what’s important: “Worrying first about the pain your child will suffer is what a father does. You don’t have the right to be a father!”
…And Mrs. Park hears everything from outside. Ooohh. Judging by her shock and the tears brimming in her eyes, she had no idea about Daddy Jo’s involvement in the hit-and-run case until now. (Which means that the man she loved secretly, Yi-soo’s father, was wrongly implicated in the case because of him. Or not. We know so little about her.)
Meanwhile, Yi-soo leaves an envelope for Hae-woo in the same train station where his father hid *the* envelope all those years ago.
While Hae-woo and Detective Byun follow the trail to find the market in the polaroid, Hae-woo seems to want to tell him about her father… but in the end, she can’t.
It’s been half an hour, so it’s time for a mandatory shark shout-out: Secretary Jang claims she wanted to get Yi-soo a shark as a present, since she first saw him staring at sharks in Japan. But it’s because she was in charge of decorating his new penthouse, now that he’s finally out of a hotel room.
Out of convenience, she now lives on the same floor, to which he replies: “It’s good to have you nearby.” She smiles sheepishly at the words, before updating him on Dong-soo—under Yi-soo’s instructions, she’s now employed him with their hotel.
Dong-soo is over the moon with the news of his new job as the CEO’s new driver, and enthusiastically tells Yi-hyun all about it. She’s genuine in her congratulations, but stops to see the telescope in the storefront, the one that reminds her of Yi-soo. Then, she gets a strange call from her mother.
Cut to: That same telescope in Yi-hyun’s home as a prize for an event she doesn’t remember entering. Awww. Yi-soo got it for her! Secretly, of course, but that’s so sweet.
Even sweeter: Yi-soo bought the same telescope for his penthouse, and the warmest smile comes from him as he looks at it. It’s good to have little reminders that he’s not totally dead inside.
Speaking of dead insides, Grandpa Jo places a mysterious call to someone he says must keep a close eye on Hae-woo. The camera zooms in on a wedding picture of Hae-woo and Joon-young. So… is it Joon-young he’s calling?
Hae-woo and Detective Byun finally make it to the market from the polaroid, only to find Soo-hyun as he’s leaving it. He calmly explains that he was looking for the market ever since Yi-soo showed him the picture, even though she can’t remember showing it to him in the first place. Something’s really fishy about this guy. (Or am I just being paranoid?)
The deaf schoolgirl manning the counter uses a pen and paper to communicate with Hae-woo, and after confirming her name, she hands her a key. As for who gave it to her, the girl just writes: “Ajusshi.” Along with that, the ajusshi gave her a hand-drawn picture of Hae-woo, indicating that he knows not only her name but also her face in stalker-like detail.
We see Yi-soo with his last piece of decorative art: Chagall’s “Orpheus”. He remembers Hae-woo telling him the tale of Orpheus, and just as Orpheus was instructed never to look back, Yi-soo reminds himself of the same: “Don’t look back.”
Detective Byun recognizes the neighborhood they’re in, and ends up leading Hae-woo to the former apartment of the Envelope Professor, curious to know if the mystery key fits. Before she goes, Soo-hyun makes sure to tell her that the police now know that her father was the last person to talk to Detective Jung.
The key fits. I love Soo-hyun’s offhand remark as they enter the apartment: “This is illegal.”
And inside, they find the blue wall we saw from the cold open, the one with the giant red circle. Detective Byun sends Soo-hyun out so he can tell Hae-woo about the Envelope Professor’s murder twelve years ago, and how Yi-soo’s father was the last person to see him alive.
But he claims the two didn’t know each other, and that Grandpa Jo is their only connection. For obvious reasons, this fact shocks Hae-woo.
He explains the whole story, of how the Envelope Professor was driven home from her grandfather’s house by Yi-soo’s father the night he died, and how the hit-and-run happened that same night. And how Yi-soo’s father was murdered the next day. And after that, Yi-soo was murdered.
Yi-soo was adamant that his father wasn’t responsible for the accident, and Detective Byun agrees that the story isn’t foolproof. He’s on the right track in thinking that whatever evidence Yi-soo’s father had must have been the reason he and Yi-soo were killed. “Three murder cases are all somehow linked. If we could only find the motive.”
Hae-woo prepares to tell him about her father’s possible involvement, but he seems to know what she wants to say and defers the conversation to another day, giving Hae-woo time to consider the circle on the wall as it seems to morph into something like water, while Yi-soo goes for a swim.
The moment he breaks for air, Hae-woo gets shocked out of her thoughts by Joon-young’s call. He’s at the house with Mrs. Park, who asks him how old CEO “Kim Jun” is. Huh. I wonder if she might be onto the fact that he’s Yi-soo.
Secretary Jang catches Yi-soo on his way out for a walk, but is politely refused when she offers to keep him company. She does grow concerned when his leg starts to hurt—but Junichiro told him when he was recovering long ago that he’d suffer pain for the rest of his life.
She flashes back to her meeting in Japan with Junichiro, when she’d asked him whether he trusted Yi-soo. “I don’t trust anyone. I only trust myself,” he said. (Except he went on to say that he only trusted her.)
Hae-woo goes to a familiar-but-tiny restaurant to do some thinking, and is surprised to find Yi-soo already there. He asks her to be his drinking buddy, and praises her honesty when she admits that it’s a little uncomfortable for her. “Sometimes I lie,” she retorts. Yi-soo: “And sometimes I tell the truth.”
She’s made more comfortable after Yi-soo explains his reason for picking the place—she recommended it personally to him, after all. (Back in that Awkward Elevator Ride.) So she opens up a little and speaks vaguely about the trouble she’s having with her case, and how she might have to drop it.
When he gently presses her, she asks him: “If, in your search for the truth, you might end up losing someone precious to you… What would you do?” She’s clearly talking about her father, and Yi-soo offers some practical advice from experience, in that anything you try to avoid can come back to you a bigger problem than when you left it. (Truer words have never been spoken.)
“If you want to find the truth,” Yi-soo says, “sometimes you need to be prepared to lose something precious to you.” And we know that he had to lose her in order to seek out the truth.
He tells her to keep her chin up, and she’s genuinely cheered up by his words. She was looking for an excuse to drop the case, though she knew she shouldn’t because of the dead Yi-soo.
“Come to think of it, every time I meet you, somehow I feel like I’m being encouraged,” she admits. If only she knew the reason why.
As they later stand outside waiting for the rain to pass, they share a gaze, and so much seems to pass through it. Yi-soo’s resolve momentarily breaks: “Run away. If it’s hard on you, it’s not too late to run. Run as far away as you can.”
But she’s found new resolve from the words he said earlier and won’t be swayed. She convinces him to go ahead without her, which he does… but he stops in the rain, turns back, and begins walking straight for her. Omo.
Yi-soo says nothing, and instead pulls her in… for a kiss. A real kiss.
Wow. Well… huh. I certainly wasn’t expecting that to happen.
I had two distinct reactions to the kiss scene, now that I picked my jaw up off the floor and returned to my seat: (1) FEELINGS! (2) I probably shouldn’t be feeling these feelings.
This is something to probably credit the actors for more than the writing, because they’ve so far done a bang-up job of conveying this sort of inexplicable attraction to each other over a very short period of time. And it’s not necessarily an attraction built on romantic tension, but one consisting of all the little moments of simple, silent connection that Yi-soo and Hae-woo share. Like how they seem to understand each other on a deeper level, and how they somehow communicate to the audience that they’re drawn to each other, though it’s clear Hae-woo can’t quite pinpoint why.
We know why, and Yi-soo knows why, but we have to look at this from her perspective: She’s a married woman who finds kinship in the company of a stranger who’s perplexingly familiar to her on some level, one who keeps saying things that remind her of her dead first love. And, in this case, it wasn’t like she was going to take their relationship any further—but I’m curious to see what her reaction will be next episode, even though I’m pretty sure she won’t be very pleased. From Yi-soo’s perspective though, she’s the Hae-woo he knew and loved/still loves. From hers, he’s just a kind and mysterious man she may or may not be attracted to.
I wasn’t expecting a kiss (or anything like it) this early in the game because of how much it’s bound to change the trust level between Yi-soo and Hae-woo, and how complicated it would/will make their relationship. I’m sure they’ll have to go on speaking, but she won’t be able to comfortably be his platonic drinking buddy anymore when she knows that things like that can happen. I’m proud of this show for going there, but at the same time, I can’t sort out my own feelings about their romance. On the one hand, she’s married, and on the other hand, she’s married. Granted, Yi-soo’s feelings probably aren’t reciprocated for those reasons, making it harder to root for their happily ever after… but at the same time, I can’t help it. (Even though I feel so terrible about it at the same time. Show, why are you doing this to me?)
As for Hae-woo, I have to admit that I’m liking her more and more with each episode. She’s unusual in the fact that she’s such a strong female protagonist, one who doesn’t exist solely as a love interest or an object, but as an active player based on her own merits. She’s strong-willed, yet her moments of weakness are very human and relatable. No one wants to accuse their own father of murder, and not everyone has the stones for it. She doesn’t need heavy-handed exposition to explain why she does things, because it’s all told by simply observing her character. Same goes for pretty much everyone in this show, come to think of it. And it’s doing wonders so far.
- Shark: Episode 4
- Shark: Episode 3
- Shark: Episode 2
- Shark: Episode 1
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- Shark begins filming, releases first stills