Two Weeks: Episode 7
The happy flashbacks in this drama, I swear. They break my heart each time, just knowing how horribly things go awry and just how far Tae-san falls on his way to the present. There’s something really satisfying about watching Past Tae-san’s decline as the backdrop against Present Tae-san’s struggle to climb out of the depths and live like a person again.
SONG OF THE DAY
Ahn Ye-seul – “Love Leaves” for the OST [ Download ]
EPISODE 7 RECAP
When we last saw Tae-san, he was leaving the hospital after sneaking a visit to see his daughter Su-jin, and mob boss Moon Il-seok was on his way in. They just miss seeing each other in the lobby, and Tae-san goes on his way.
Su-jin gets a call in her room from a visitor standing just on the other side of the window, and she raises her blinds… to find Boss Moon smiling ever so creepily down at her. He asks if she’s Jang Tae-san’s daughter, and Su-jin lights up, thinking ajusshi is Daddy’s friend and maybe has a message from him.
She starts asking all the things she’s dying to know, like how he knows her father and what kind of work Dad does, and he just ignores her and asks where her mom is. She hurriedly tells him that Mom can’t know about her meeting Dad. Oh noes.
Boss Moon is a little confused by that (to be fair, it doesn’t take much to confuse him) and Su-jin wonders how someone who’s friends with her dad doesn’t know what to keep secret. “He came to see you without your mom knowing?” Su-jin: “Yes, he even came today.” Ack. Aaaaack.
Su-jin is just taken with the idea that someone is close enough to Dad to call him Tae-sannie and asks more questions, but he runs off and leaves her wondering why he came at all if he wasn’t going to tell her anything.
Boss Moon heads out, after having visited the hospital under philanthropic pretenses, but then stops short at the elevator when he witnesses Seung-woo arriving to meet with In-hye. He doesn’t think anything of them at first, until they start talking about Su-jin.
Seung-woo and In-hye relocate for a chat, and he sits there wondering how he’s going to ask her about Tae-san. He thinks to himself that he never wanted to have to ask her about Su-jin’s birth father.
In-hye is the first to ask about the fugitive case, and says that now that the suspect is dead, maybe Seung-woo can get some rest. He just stares at her, wondering how she can be so calm when Su-jin’s biological father is dead, while In-hye nervously pretends that everything is fine.
He tries asking why she called earlier, and that’s when she admits that she had something to tell him about Su-jin’s father, but that she’ll tell him about it after the surgery. She takes his hands: “Thank you, for never once asking me about that person. And I’m sorry, for not being able to tell you first.”
We see that Boss Moon is watching the whole exchange, trying to piece together what In-hye knows. He decides she’s much too calm, but there’s also no way Tae-san would’ve handed off the digital camera to a detective’s girlfriend, and they get back to searching for Tae-san now that they know he’s alive.
When Mom returns, Su-jin asks if she can ask her just once about the thing she hates talking about the most, and starts, “Da—” but there’s a tap on the glass, and she finds Seung-woo here to see her.
Su-jin asks brightly how he had time to come see her, and if that means he caught the murderer. Eep. Awkward silence. He takes a look at her D-Day calendar and sighs that there’s still ten days left, and she teases that he’s just anxious to marry Mom.
He tells her she’s wrong, and what he really wants is for her to call him dad, just like she promised she would once he married her mom. Su-jin plays coy, “Did I say that?” As he smiles at her through the glass, he thinks to himself: “I’m sorry Su-jin-ah.”
Tae-san drives down the highway, getting teary-eyed at the thought that Su-jin put on a brave smile when she’s clearly in a lot of pain. He diligently keeps to his medicine schedule, though he has nothing to ease the pain from the bullet wound. We see that he’s on his way to Busan, which is where he’ll catch his boat to the Philippines.
At the same time, Seung-woo returns to the empty station, and finds his whole team missing. He calls them one after another, and their phones are all turned off. He asks another officer where they went, and he says they went on some special assignment and had to turn their phones off.
Seung-woo wonders what kind of special assignment would leave him out of the loop, and we see his fellow detectives being driven somewhere by the prosecutor, not any wiser about where they’re headed.
Five hours earlier. Jae-kyung’s partner Sang-hoon catches the phone conversation between Tae-san and In-hye, and records it. After hearing that Tae-san is headed to the harbor, Jae-kyung runs to the chief prosecutor to ask if she can catch him quietly with three of her own team members, so that the information doesn’t leak outside their office.
He refuses to let her do it with just three people, and tells her to do it the way she likes—off the record, and unofficially. He orders her to take the detective team along, minus Seung-woo, and that’s when he suggests confiscating their cell phones to keep them from calling him.
So when she had crashed their party, it was to recruit them for this top-secret mission. Back in the present, they race down the highway toward Busan.
Boss Moon gets two conflicting reports from his two minions: the cops are still searching for Tae-san’s body in the river thinking he’s dead, while the prosecutor-detective task force has suddenly disappeared, minus Seung-woo.
By the time Tae-san gets to Busan, it’s nighttime, and he looks out the window with a wistful smile, noting how much the city has changed. He drives to a familiar haunt—the dance studio where In-hye used to work, and his eyes start to fill with tears as he thinks back to those days.
As he drives away, we flash back to those early days, as In-hye races out of the studio to catch a cab. She gets beaten out by a more aggressive ajumma, and then sees Tae-san on his motorcycle across the street.
She races over to him and begs him for a ride, offering to pay. He dodges eye contact, and that’s when she remembers his face from the mermaid boob-grab incident, and calls him out. He can barely even look at her, he’s so embarrassed. It’s adorable.
Before he can even refuse, she jumps on the back of his motorcycle and wraps her arms around him, burying her head into his back like she’s planning to hang on until he says yes. So he taps her on the head and hands her a helmet, and gives her a ride.
She’s in such a hurry that she runs off with the helmet on her head, gesturing incoherently. He just laughs as he watches her run off, and then catches his reflection in his rearview mirror, smiling.
Back in the present, he washes off his disfiguring disguise and catches himself in the mirror, doing the exact same thing—he’s smiling like a fool as he thinks about her. “Crazy bastard.”
He thinks back to all her recent declarations about her fiancé, and sighs that it’s a good thing that he seems like a good person.
Suddenly a man comes up to him in the bathroom, and I swear, my heart just lurched. He asks if Tae-san called for a designated driver, which turns out to be the code for getting to the smuggling ship.
Tae-san follows him out to the dock, where Jae-kyung and her team are already lying in wait. They watch as he arrives, and once he boards, they make their move to close in on the ship.
Not knowing any of what’s going on above, Tae-san gets led further and further into the belly of the boat, until they reach a tiny hidden storage compartment. The man tells him to get in, hands him a bag of water and bread, and tosses him an empty bottle to use as a toilet before sealing him inside. Tae-san sits in the dark and scrambles for his flashlight to start redressing his wound.
At the hospital, In-hye watches the clock anxiously, knowing that Tae-san is about to take off for the Philippines. Su-jin draws another picture and tells Mom the new story she wrote, about the sun and the mountain. Ha, she’s making parent puns (sun = hae for In-hye, and mountain = san for Tae-san).
She says that once upon a time, the sun and the mountain loved each other very very much, but had to part. Mom asks why they had to break up if they were so in love, and Su-jin says that the sun came to see the mountain all the time, and the mountain was so happy that the sun never went home.
But because the sun wouldn’t go home, the trees and flowers and birds couldn’t sleep. So then the mountain got mad at the sun, and said it was too hot. “But in truth, even if the mountain couldn’t sleep for a hundred nights, it loved the sun.” Awww, kid.
Mom asks if the sun got mad and broke up with the mountain because of that, and Su-jin guesses that’s what happened. Mom asks where the sun went after that. Su-jin: “It went to the moon. Isn’t that a sad story?” She uses the same wording that Mom had always used with her—that everyone has a story they can’t share.
Tae-san sits in the dark looking up at monkey and telling Su-jin that he’ll be on the boat for three days and that he’ll make sure to care for his bullet wound.
Suddenly he hears footsteps outside, and he huddles in the corner. He’s hidden, right? Like in a compartment where they can’t find him?
But then the door swings open, and Jae-kyung storms in with a gun and flashlight aimed right in Tae-san’s face. Nooooooooo. I was totally expecting him to find some way out of this, but they have him cornered.
He tries to run, but in that tiny space, they catch him in no time, and soon he’s being dragged away in handcuffs all over again. Agh, what’re we gonna do? Is it too much to hope for another car accident?
Jae-kyung watches as they lead him off the boat, and then we catch the rest of her conversation with the chief prosecutor, where she tells him that her plan is to question Tae-san privately and get him to tell her where the digital camera is. Her goal is to come right back to Seoul to find it and arrest Moon Il-seok the second she has it in her hands.
Her boss warns her that she has to earn Tae-san’s trust if she wants him to tell her anything. He’s been burned too many times to trust easily, so she has to make him think that she believes he’s been framed, and tell him that she knows about his daughter and her surgery. OH. This just got a lot more interesting.
She tells the cops thanks and says she’ll be taking Tae-san from here, which doesn’t exactly go over well. They refuse to be relegated to her hunting dogs, and insist on taking Tae-san to Seoul themselves. Augh, just let her talk to him alone for five minutes, people!
She finally relents that they’ll go together, thinking she’ll get her chance to talk to him once they’re back in Seoul. This is a bad idea. What if you don’t make it there?
Rookie cop Il-do finally turns on his phone to find a stream of angry texts from Seung-woo, and hurriedly calls him back and spills the beans: Jang Tae-san is alive, and they’re on their way back with him.
Seung-woo fumes when he hears that Jae-kyung lied to him, but then realizes that she left him out on purpose. He gets in his car and drives like a madman to intercept them on their way up, tracing Il-do’s cell phone.
In the car, Tae-san asks how they found him on that boat, and thinks mistakenly that the old man in the mountains sold him out. Jae-kyung remains tight-lipped, not able to speak freely with the cops in the car.
They end up in gridlock traffic late at night, and Il-do runs back after seeing that an accident has blocked the road ahead. They decide to get off the highway, as do a few other cars, and we see that one of them has the two pawnshop lackeys inside. Uh-oh. That can only mean the mob is here, and now I’m convinced they caused whatever accident made them get off the highway.
Sure enough, once they’re on a deserted two-lane road, the car in front of them slows to a crawl, as a large truck passes by. Suddenly the entire cargo door of the truck opens, and there’s Teacher Kim, standing inside, poised with a giant gun.
He shoots into each of the police cars, and thank goodness they’re just gas grenades. Both cars careen into each other, and the gangsters block them off on all sides, and start yanking them out of the cars to beat them with pipes and crush their cell phones, one by one.
Jae-kyung and Tae-san are the last two stuck inside, and Tae-san sees a way out through the van’s trunk. Jae-kyung follows right behind him, refusing to let go, and scrambles to get her gun out.
She shoots into the air, and Tae-san head-butts her to get out of her grasp, and then a gangster knocks her down from behind. Eep, she hits the ground. Teacher Kim nabs Tae-san in the scuffle and starts choking him, and zaps him with a taser until he faints.
By the time Jae-kyung opens her eyes and gets up, Teacher Kim and the rest of the boys are driving off with Tae-san. She sees a man stopped in the road, and just barks at him that she’s police, and takes his car.
The cops are left frazzled, and they demand to know what’s really going on. Sang-hoon explains that Jang Tae-san is part of a larger investigation and says he can’t tell them any more than that.
Meanwhile Jae-kyung stays on the mobsters’ tail, and hopes that Sang-hoon keeps his mouth shut about the case. She finds a scarf and a pair of glasses in the car, and starts to prepare her disguise as she drives.
Seung-woo arrives at the accident scene to find his hapless teammates with wrecked cars and no Jang Tae-san. The man who got carjacked by Jae-kyung comes ambling forward, and Seung-woo picks up right away that he’s been drinking, and uses that to keep him from reporting it. Ha. He finds out something useful though—the guy has a black box in his car, which means it can be tracked.
Teacher Kim sees Jae-kyung on his tail, and pulls over to force her to pass. She sees that she’s been spotted, so she passes them up and waits a while before turning around, but by the time she does, she loses them at a fork in the road. The signs split for Seoul and Chuncheon, and she’s left standing in the road, wondering which way they went.
She wills herself to think this through rationally, and says they need a quiet, out of the way place to question Tae-san if they haven’t already found the digital camera. She scans her brain, as we scan her apartment. Ha, the drawers open and the pages from her files come at us, which seems like an unnecessary place to spend your CG bucks, but whatever Show.
The point is that Jae-kyung is a walking encyclopedia of all things Moon Il-seok, and she rifles through her memory of his holdings, looking for a warehouse he’s likely to use. Seung-woo and the rest of the team track Jae-kyung to Chuncheon, and follow.
Tae-san is still unconscious when he’s brought to a warehouse and tied up in a chair. He darts awake when they throw a bucket of water at his face, and he opens his eyes to see Boss Moon sitting across from him with a satisfied smile on his face.
He asks for the digital camera, and right away Tae-san is confused—he had assumed they killed Man-seok to get the camera, but realizes only now that they still don’t have it. Boss Moon orders him to tell them where it is, and in exchange he’ll make his death less painful. Death and painful death? Oh gee, what great options to choose from.
Tae-san thinks back to what the mountain ajusshi said, about him being the idiot who was duped and used by Boss Moon, not once but three times. He grits his teeth and tells himself: “You have to get out of this alive, Jang Tae-san. Let’s not get bested by him again, Tae-san-ah.”
Tae-san asks why him, three times over, and Boss Moon points out that that’s not his fault. Tae-san argues that he threatened In-hye’s life, and Boss Moon points out in turn how he didn’t kill her, as if holding up his end of the bargain makes it not his fault. He fully admits he would’ve killed them both had Tae-san declined, and Tae-san asks what choice that left him. Stop trying to play logic games with a murderer, Tae-san.
Boss Moon says it’s simple—if it were him, he’d have put a knife to the man’s throat who was threatening him and his family. He says he’s someone who tore the food out of his own siblings’ mouths to survive in this world, and there’s no use blaming other people for not being strong enough to protect what’s yours.
Tae-san scoffs, “This is my fault?” Boss Moon says it’s his fault he was so scared of him that he caved: “The choice was your own, you pathetic bastard.” Oof. Harsh and twisted, but true. Tae-san asks bitterly why he didn’t ask this time then.
Boss Moon: “Because that’s the kind of bastard you are—someone who can’t make a peep no matter what I order you to do. Because you do nothing. Because you did exactly as told twice already. If you had lived like a person, do you think I would’ve done that? Look at the way you live.”
He clucks in pity, as Tae-san’s anger mounts. “You don’t care if you die today, if you die tomorrow. What kind of chance should I give to a bastard like that?” Tae-san wonders to himself if he was really such an easy and pathetic target. But now it only makes him more determined to outsmart Boss Moon, and he says he’ll give up the camera if his life is spared. Boss Moon chuckles at his nerve, wondering if getting shot made him braver.
He takes out his knife and rips through Tae-san’s shirt and wound dressing, and notes the herbs used to speed the healing process. He demands to know who helped him, and Tae-san just growls back that he did it himself. They empty the contents of his bag to find more medicine, and Boss Moon sends Teacher Kim back to the area near the river to find out who bought the meds—whoever helped him could be holding the camera.
Bits for Brains minion asks the boss why they don’t just haul Tae-san’s daughter here to threaten her, and Boss Moon actually chides him for wanting to torture a child. So there ARE evil things even you won’t do. He also figures it’s useless to use a daughter Tae-san has no attachment to.
Meanwhile Jae-kyung sneaks her way onto the premises, worried that it’s too quiet and that maybe she picked the wrong warehouse, since she really did just come here on a hunch. But when she gets close, she gets spotted by two henchmen. She quickly wraps the scarf around her fist. To fight them? Badass. She actually manages to fight them off, but as soon as she does, Teacher Kim shows up from behind and just throws her like a tiny ragdoll. Damn.
Inside, Tae-san is getting the crap kicked out of him when a minion hurriedly tells Boss Moon that Jae-kyung has found them. He calls Congresswoman Jo to tell her the series of unfortunate events, and she can’t believe that the idiots captured a prosecutor.
He says she hasn’t seen his face yet, so he could have the henchmen drop her off at home, but Congresswoman Jo asks the obvious question—what do you suppose she’ll do once she wakes up?
She orders coldly, “Kill her.” Even Boss Moon is a little freaked out, and says she’s still a prosecutor. But Congresswoman Jo paints a scenario that she went blind with revenge and got herself killed.
So Boss Moon tells his men to dump her car, and doesn’t hesitate to show Jae-kyung his face. He sighs that she’s pretty damn fearless, and she says the same of him, kidnapping a prosecutor. Her hands are trembling behind her, but she keeps her cool.
He says she won’t be a prosecutor if she’s dead, and she bluffs that there’s no way she would’ve come alone. She demands to know how he found them, and though we get a flashback to Teacher Kim giving instructions for the cars and truck he’ll need for the operation, he doesn’t give her any answers.
Seung-woo catches up to the car Jae-kyung stole, but finds it ditched by the river, with no trace of her. He tells Il-do to find out where it was before being brought to the last location.
Boss Moon brings Jae-kyung tied and gagged into the room where they’re keeping Tae-san, and he looks up in shock: “Prosecutor?” Boss Moon chuckles that he only sees her as a prosecutor, and tells him who she really is—the daughter of the man he went to prison for stabbing.
He remembers now, the schoolgirl in the courtroom, screaming in outrage that he wasn’t the one who stabbed her father. Boss Moon tells Tae-san that that’s the reason she’s been chasing him, because of her personal vendetta. Jae-kyung shakes her head no.
Boss Moon takes on his fatherly persona, as he commiserates with Tae-san that it’s been such a long and tiresome road. And then he takes out a gun and offers it to him. “Shoot her. And I’ll let you live.” Oh shit.
He says (like it’s the most reasonable thing on earth) that the only reason he had to kill Tae-san was because Jae-kyung was on his tail. But if she’s gone, he doesn’t really need to kill Tae-san at all.
Tae-san looks back and forth between them: “You want me to kill a prosecutor?” Boss Moon says that he’ll put him on a boat tonight to go wherever he wants, but he needs Tae-san to kill Jae-kyung as his insurance that he’ll live quietly and keep his mouth shut forever. “This is my last gift to you.”
He offers up the third and final choice to Tae-san: shoot her and hand over the camera and disappear, or be buried next to her. Tae-san looks up at Jae-kyung, pleading through muffled screams, and then thinks of Su-jin…
He reaches for the gun…
He gets up and says that he’ll kill her and go out to get the camera, and Boss Moon agrees. Tae-san raises the gun as Jae-kyung screams for her life. And as Su-jin crosses off another day in her calendar, Tae-san fires.
It was a bit of a slower episode today with a little less chase and more time spent on character development, but that cliffhanger makes up for it with a good dose of tension. I do like this show best when it’s high octane all the time, but I always enjoy the flashbacks to Tae-san and In-hye’s love story. They’re the one happy break we get from all the mayhem, and I really love seeing Innocent Tae-san falling in love. It’s such a stark contrast from Bastard Tae-san, but all the better that those layers somehow exist together now—it makes for such rich conflict in the Tae-san/In-hye/Seung-woo triangle. I actually find myself conflicted there, and I didn’t expect to be.
I adored Su-jin’s story about the sun and the mountain, just because you don’t expect a kid to understand things like noble idiocy, but maybe all the drama watching she does gives her a leg up. It really makes me pull for Tae-san to be understood by In-hye, even if complete forgiveness is too much to ask for. I know that he isn’t doing any of this to be redeemed in her eyes, but that’s the thing I’m really dying to see—the moment when she realizes that he maybe isn’t completely the dirtbag she thought he was.
Boss Moon’s blame game was a great moment for Tae-san, because there’s a bitter truth to his words. Obviously we’re dealing with a murderer whose laws are kill or be killed, but it’s not wrong that Tae-san made the choices he did—and twice at that—because he was weak and scared and powerless to protect the ones he loved. There’s nobility in that sacrifice, but there’s stupidity too, and I appreciate a story that’s going to point that out. Tae-san is no hero for making that choice. He was just cornered and outwitted, and realizing it now is the only way he’ll stop making that same mistake all over again.
It’s why I don’t really believe he’ll shoot Jae-kyung (also because she’s too badass to die now). I seriously can’t wait for the two of them to have just ONE FREAKING MINUTE to talk to each other for the love of all that is holy, and if Boss Moon just mucked up her chances to gain Tae-san’s trust by outing her identity, I’m going to scream bloody murder. What do I have to do to get a fugitive-prosecutor tag-team up in here?