Two Weeks: Episode 11
Things are starting to look up for our man on the run. Well, as up as they can be when you’re on the run for murder with an assassin on your tail. Tae-san gains a little more faith from the people around him, and even begins to call a few shots instead of always reacting after being cornered. It’s a nice reversal, though as with all things in this world, nothing stays the same for very long…
SONG OF THE DAY
Ha Dong-kyun – “사랑한 후에 (After Love)” [ Download ]
EPISODE 11 RECAP
After getting In-hye’s help to track down the college student who bought the digital camera, Tae-san fiiiiiiiinally gets his hands on it. He smiles in relief at the first thing that’s gone his way since, well, ever, and wonders what on earth is on this thing that he nearly died for.
It turns out In-hye came after all, to make sure that the sale went as planned. She doesn’t make her presence known and just watches Tae-san from afar, but she happens to catch the student’s phone conversation on his way back inside: “Jang Tae-san?” Ack.
It’s the cops, checking on the lead after Man-seok’s girlfriend called in to report her visit from In-hye today. They don’t bother calling Seung-woo or Jae-kyung, but Seung-woo is actually the first to arrive on the scene. Did he follow In-hye here?
He pulls up just as she takes off running in the other direction, so he circles around to try and catch up to her.
Meanwhile, Tae-san stops to check the camera and doesn’t find anything (which we know is because the video is encrypted). A shadow creeps up on him from behind, and I’m not even that scared because I assume it’s In-hye…
But aaaaaaack, it’s Teacher Kim—a flying Teacher Kim, who launches himself at Tae-san like a fist torpedo, and knocks him down with one blow after another.
Tae-san fights back but it’s no use, and soon Teacher Kim has him pinned to the ground. He digs around in his jacket, and yanks out the camera. Nooooooooooo. We just got our hands on it! No. No. No. No. No. No.
Teacher Kim doesn’t leave it at that, and now that he has the camera, he starts choking Tae-san to finish him off for good. That’s when In-hye arrives, to find Tae-san on the brink of death.
Suddenly a big yellow caution placard comes flying into frame to knock Teacher Kim down—it’s In-hye, swinging wildly with her eyes shut. Aw, that’s so cute. Of course, the happy rescue moment only lasts two seconds, because now she’s being attacked.
Tae-san looks up and sees her struggling to get free from Teacher Kim, and either they’ve practiced this or she’s been in trouble before, because she knows to duck at exactly the right moment when Tae-san leaps to kick Teacher Kim away from her.
I know their lives are at stake, but it’s just really endearing how every time Teacher Kim gets one pinned down, the other one jumps into the fray. He’s back to Tae-san when Seung-woo finally arrives. Teacher Kim bolts (with the goddamn camera, urg), leaving the love triangle to sort itself out.
Tae-san panics, and In-hye hands him her car key and urges him to run. That’s the scene that Seung-woo walks in on: the two of them holding hands, and In-hye telling him to run.
Seconds later, police sirens ring out. Aw, are they going to think that Seung-woo brought them here? Seung-woo looks back and forth between them… and tells Tae-san to run. Whoa. Tae-san bolts, and Seung-woo scrambles to get In-hye out of there before the police arrive. As they do, the captain spots Seung-woo’s car and does a double take.
Tae-san takes In-hye’s car, but Teacher Kim somehow cuts him off, and stands in his path in a tunnel. Tae-san grits his teeth and drives ahead at full speed, and Teacher Kim freaking Terminator-runs AT the car… and then jumps over it as it speeds past. I knew it. He’s a cyborg, right?
Tae-san manages to kick him away from the car, but when Teacher Kim gets up to play chicken again, Tae-san thinks better of it and backs out of the tunnel. But, the camera!
The cops question a few students who witnessed the fight, but they can’t identify any of the men as Jang Tae-san, and decide that it must’ve been a four-way lovers’ quarrel, because they saw three men fighting over one woman. Ha.
Jae-kyung checks in with Il-do at the hospital, and hears that In-hye hasn’t been in all day. She thinks it unlikely that they unencrypted the video file, but assumes they’ve got their hands on the camera by now. Well, you’re half right.
Seung-woo chastises In-hye for going after Teacher Kim so recklessly when she could’ve been hurt, and sighs that there’s cause for blame and reproach in their relationship now.
She explains that the person who’s trying to kill Tae-san is the same man he went to prison for eight years ago, and says she wanted to help him this time, because of everything he lost. Seung-woo asks hesitantly if she parted ways with Tae-san eight years ago without knowing the reason why. She nods without a word.
Tae-san gets away, and berates himself for losing the camera after everything he went through to get here. He hits himself over and over in a rage: “You idiot! You trash!”
In-hye returns to the hospital, where Jae-kyung is waiting. She scoffs in disbelief to hear that they lost the camera. Her eyes fill with angry tears and she lights into In-hye for not trusting her, and choosing to ditch them on the subway.
But this time In-hye argues right back that Jae-kyung isn’t in this to save Tae-san: “This is revenge for you, but it’s his life! What did he do wrong? Why does he have to run? Who made that camera in the first place?!”
Oh dayum. I love that she’s got a spine. She calls Jae-kyung out on her lie that the camera would prove Tae-san’s innocence. Flashback to earlier today: In-hye tells Tae-san to take the camera to Jae-kyung, but he already knows that all she wants the camera for is proof of a connection between two people. It doesn’t clear his name, and that’s not Jae-kyung’s priority.
In-hye sighs that if she had known they’d lose it in the end, she should’ve trusted her anyway. But Jae-kyung apologizes, saying that she was right. In-hye wonders how that killer knew where to find them, and Jae-kyung says that Man-seok’s girlfriend called in the tip to the police. At least that narrows down our mole list to the coppers, yeah?
Su-jin is asleep by the time In-hye returns to the hospital room, and she’s dozed off clutching the photo of Mom and Dad. In-hye’s eyes widen to see it, and Su-jin darts up to argue defensively that it’s her photo now. “You threw it away, so it’s mine! You ripped it up but I taped it back together, so it’s mine!” Awwww, it kills me that this is what she’s afraid of right now.
In-hye’s heart breaks: “You had it all this time?” She hangs her little head: “Because he’s my dad…” She admits to being curious about what Dad looked like, and In-hye can barely hold in her tears as she nods, realizing how obvious that is.
Su-jin asks why Mom isn’t getting mad at her, and she says it’s because she’s sorry, for not thinking that she’d be curious about her father’s face, for making her sneak this picture and look at it in secret. Augh, I’m not gonna cry.
Mom asks why Su-jin didn’t ask about Dad directly, and Su-jin says it’s because Mom always said that everyone had a story they couldn’t tell, and because she knew it would make Mom sad. “And I already make you so sad because I’m sick all the time.” And, now I’m crying.
She says that she couldn’t make Mom any sadder, knowing that Daddy already made her sad. Aw. In-hye hugs her close and says Mom had it all wrong, and misunderstood Dad.
Su-jin lights up immediately, and In-hye promises to tell her everything after her surgery. She hands her the hairpin from Tae-san, adding that she’ll tell her all about the person who gave this to her. Su-jin plays dumb for Mom’s benefit, and looks up coyly: “Who could it be?”
Tae-san drops In-hye’s car off at the hospital, and as he looks up at the building from down below, we get an early flashback to him as a little boy, asking Mom who his dad is. She tells him coldly that he doesn’t have a father, since nobody calls him his son, and Little Tae-san asks why.
Mom: “Because he hates you!” Ugh, what a horrible thing to say. No wonder he hates himself.
Imaginary Su-jin stands next to Dad and asks, “You were sad, huh? It hurt, huh?” He nods. He crouches down and takes her hand: “I didn’t know it then—that you would be just like me, curious about your father, longing for your father. I didn’t know I’d become an adult who caused that.”
Su-jin says she didn’t know either, how much she’d miss her dad, and how much she’d like him, simply because he’s Dad. He marvels at how strange that is, and sighs that a kid like her has to call a bastard like him a father.
He clenches his chest and tells her that it hurts so much whenever he thinks of her, and she reaches out and pets him over his heart. He holds her hand and smiles up at her, while the real Su-jin is up in her room imagining all the ways she’s going to wear the hairpin Daddy gave her.
Tae-san texts In-hye that he left the car in the parking lot, and apologizes for being empty-handed after all her help in getting that camera. She assures him that they did their best today, and that there will be another way. He says there is, but doesn’t share any details.
Boss Moon gets the camera and rests easy knowing that there’s no way Jae-kyung can build a case without this. He turns his minions’ efforts into finding Tae-san, to get rid of their one loose end.
Teacher Kim gets orders to kill Tae-san on sight, and heads out. What he doesn’t see is that Tae-san is hiding out just a few feet away, keeping an eye on Boss Moon’s house. Wait. You’re not thinking of robbing the mobster, are you? That is ballsy. He heads to the train station locker where he’s keeping his stash of supplies, and picks up a few things.
Meanwhile Jae-kyung is briefing her boss, and says she miscalculated Tae-san—she was trying to read his motivations, but didn’t see his daughter’s surgery. The chief prosecutor asks if she can get a read on Congresswoman Jo, and Jae-kyung says she isn’t a person who was after power to begin with. She just needed that position to feed her greed.
He says they have to figure out what changed her mind, and why now. Jae-kyung can’t shake the thought that it has to do with the charity auction somehow—Congresswoman Jo is being uncharacteristically rash with security cameras and her obsession with chasing Jae-kyung, Boss Moon is set to appear at one of her public functions for the first time ever, and she was originally planning to retire after the auction. All signs point to that event.
Jae-kyung sits in her office with her team and channels her inner congresswoman bitch, talking aloud like a crazy person and spewing threats at herself. It scares the daylights out of sunbae Sang-hoon, but it gets her wheels turning.
Congresswoman Jo needed power to make this auction happen, and to keep it untouchable. Jae-kyung decides to investigate the auction from top to bottom—every person and artifact associated with it. Aw yeah. Her phone rings, and it’s Tae-san. Ooh.
Boss Moon gets tech support in there to retrieve the video file, but gets told that the only way to unlock it is with a retina scan. You have cameras with retina scanners, but not a remote backup function? Bah.
But then the guy just takes the camera apart and gets the chip out anyway… and I so don’t see the point of a retina scanner if you can just monkey the thing open. Whatever.
Anyway, the file is recovered intact, and Boss Moon finally watches the recording of his very incriminating conversation with Congresswoman Jo about the details of the charity auction.
Jae-kyung follows Tae-san’s strict instructions and comes alone to meet him. She wonders if all the cloak and dagger is necessary but he’s obviously not taking any chances. She knows he isn’t here to turn himself in, and says she heard it from In-hye.
He asks if In-hye is okay, and Jae-kyung conveys her message for him to clear his name and make it back to them. He apologizes for losing the camera, and then asks if she’s the one who planted it—as in, the person who started this whole chain of events.
She hangs her head and says it’s the biggest regret of her life. He tells her to help him catch Boss Moon if she really feels bad, though she doesn’t see how. He figures that losing the camera doesn’t mean they still can’t pin the murder on him. She asks if they can’t discuss it over dinner, wanting to at least buy the guy who saved her life a meal.
She admits that she spent years vowing that if she could catch Moon Il-seok, she’d throw her life away in an instant. But the second he captured her and put that duct tape over her mouth, she found herself wondering why she’d been so foolish.
She says it was embarrassing to realize how quickly she would change her mind when she thought she might die, and thanks Tae-san for saving her that day. She sighs that dying at that man’s hands would’ve truly been a worthless death.
So off to dinner they go… with Tae-san dressed as a woman? Hahahaha. Now it’s his turn to wonder if all this is necessary, and she rather enjoys telling him that it is, with the reminder that if she’s caught helping a fugitive one more time, she’ll really get axed.
They walk down a hallway linking arms (Is he supposed to be blind or a drunk rock star?) and she mutters at him to walk naturally. Er, what about this scenario is natural in anyone’s eyes?
It turns out she’s taking him to her own apartment, which surprises him. But she says it’s the safest place she could think of. She guesses that he probably hasn’t had a real meal in over a week, and goes to the kitchen while pointing out her Big Baddie Board for him to peruse.
It’s only now that he’s introduced to Congresswoman Jo—the other person Jae-kyung is after, and the co-conspirator in wanting him dead.
Boss Moon heads over to Congresswoman Jo’s house directly, to hand over the camera and the video file. She destroys it on sight, not needing to watch the reminder of the conversation she remembers only too well.
His last loose end is Tae-san, which she doesn’t seem so worried about. Jae-kyung, on the other hand, still makes her nervous. She points out that Jae-kyung knows about him attending the charity auction, and he suggests she take care of Jae-kyung too.
Back at Fugitive Bed and Breakfast, Jae-kyung apologizes for the meager spread, not really one for the cooking. But Tae-san takes one bite and is moved. “Freshly made white rice is so good. I didn’t know it before.”
He takes out a sketch he made of Teacher Kim (aw is this where Su-jin gets her art gene from?) and says this is the assassin he’s seen at the sight of the explosion, the day Man-seok died, and at the mall. He’s a new face, and Tae-san is sure he came from overseas.
His thinks that if they can catch him for Man-seok’s murder, he’ll talk because he’s just a hired hand. If they can get him to say that Boss Moon ordered the hit, then link that to Mi-sook’s murder, they get another way back to the original incident.
He tells her about the penknife that Teacher Kim always carries, and the bus CCTV footage that should’ve caught his face outside the mall that day, giving her a place to start.
And then he hands over the recording of his pawnshop lackeys taking the call to set up his frame job. When he admits he’s been staying there at night, she gapes that he could’ve been caught. She starts to suggest that he sleep here, but he has to remind her that he’s still a fugitive.
She asks what his plan is for getting Teacher Kim, and Tae-san says, “I get shot by him.” WHAT. I don’t like this plan. Think of a new plan.
By dawn, he’s back on the road, and Jae-kyung watches him go from her window. Meanwhile, the gangsters regroup and get sent out to canvas the streets, district by district until they find Tae-san. Jae-kyung asks her boss if they can do this operation quietly, with just a few key personnel. But what if one of them is the mole?
Seung-woo stops by to see Su-jin’s doctor (and his friend), to ask what time Tae-san came here the day he found out he was a match. She apologizes for not being able to tell him sooner, and Seung-woo just sighs, wondering aloud why Tae-san lived that way and if it was because he lost In-hye.
The doc realizes Seung-woo is nervous about his relationship, and reassures him that it’s all in the past. He asks her to recall what time Tae-san came by that day, because it’s important. To clear his name, right?
Next he asks Il-do about the penknife he investigated, and assigns him to find the cab that Tae-san took the day of Mi-sook’s murder. Il-do still has no idea why he’s stationed in the hospital, but follows orders and doesn’t ask questions.
Jae-kyung calls, and tells Seung-woo only vaguely about the plan to catch Teacher Kim. It involves Tae-san turning himself in, knowing that Teacher Kim will show up to kill him. Seung-woo doesn’t see why they would now that they have the camera, but Jae-kyung is sure he’ll show up to finish the job. The thing they need to find out is how he finds out. Yes, finally, mole-hunting season!
Sang-hoon drops off a motorcycle at a rest stop, where Tae-san picks it up and rides off. Jae-kyung shows up at the police station to buy the boys a beer, playing the part of the weary prosecutor, days away from losing her job.
She takes the captain and the two other detectives out for a beer, which I guess excludes Il-do from the mole suspect list. Phew. She lays down some pretty good bait, with urgent calls from Sang-hoon about Tae-san, and lame excuses that sound like lies.
She excuses herself to take the call, waiting to make sure that the mole follows. She pretends to get the news that Tae-san is turning himself in, and names the time and place. Her lookout confirms that her suspicions were right: “It was that person.” Which one?
Boss Moon chuckles to hear that Tae-san is giving up, and sends Teacher Kim to finish him off and go abroad. He orders Brainy Smurf to clean up Teacher Kim’s tracks, and make sure he’s erased from all their security footage.
Brainy Smurf asks where he found Teacher Kim, noting that the boss is particularly good to him. Boss Moon just says that he isn’t a paid hand like everyone else, and that he’ll be a future business partner one day.
Jae-kyung makes sure to go alone, making it look as though the rest of her team is stationed at the office. Teacher Kim arrives early as expected, to find the best vantage point.
But as he sets up, we see Jae-kyung arrive with Seung-woo and Sang-hoon even earlier, and plan their hiding spots for the operation. With everyone in place, Tae-san arrives right on time.
As he walks up to Jae-kyung, Teacher Kim shoots from up above, and he takes two hits—to the head and the chest. That had better be a bulletproof helmet, or this is the worst plan ever.
He goes down, and Jae-kyung screams. That’s the team’s cue to catch Teacher Kim, but I’m worried. There are only four of you, and he’s a wily bastard.
He makes it up to the roof and attaches his sniper rifle to a remote-controlled helicopter rig, sending it off without him. Drat, don’t they need to catch him with a gun to prove the case?
After sending the gun, he hops rooftops (that leap doesn’t seem remotely possible for a non-cyborg, just sayin’) and runs down his planned exit route… where Sang-hoon and another agent are armed and waiting. Nice.
Four tranquilizer darts later, Teacher Kim is down.
As Su-jin crosses off another day, Tae-san opens his eyes. D-5.
Yes, but WHO IS THE MOLE? We’d better find out tomorrow, though I guess with it narrowed down to the three cops, they’re fairly interchangeable as story pieces. I’m just glad rookie cop Il-do has been cleared from moledom. I think. I hope. I admit that I was hoping for a twist in the Teacher Kim trap, because it just seemed too pat to have him fall for it so perfectly without a hitch. Though in the grand scheme of things, it’s hardly payback for him stealing that camera (URG. URG. URG.) after so much effort from our good guys. My only comfort is that Boss Moon is way too conniving not to have made a thousand copies of that video, for mutually assured destruction in case Congresswoman Jo leaves him hanging.
Things definitely took a swing upwards when Tae-san finally teamed up with Jae-kyung. I feel like I’ve been waiting so long for this partnership that I just wanted an episode where he sat down and told her everything from the beginning. Life story: go! It was way too short (I mean, couldn’t he just sleep on the couch for one measly night?) but I like that we got both strategy—a rare feat for the good guys—and a human connection, with her wanting to make him food to thank him for saving her life. At least now the major misunderstandings are cleared up, and instead of being chased, Tae-san actually has the opportunity to turn the tables on Boss Moon. I worry that they’ve clearly underestimated Teacher Kim’s loyalty to Boss Moon, but hopefully the evidence will be on their side. Hm, though based on how well evidence has served them up until now, that sounds like a pipedream.
The flashbacks to Tae-san’s childhood are definitely the most heartbreaking of all the flashbacks. Could there be anything sadder than a kid who gets told that his father disowned him because he hates him, only to be followed by his mother’s abandonment and suicide? No wonder he latched onto the first makeshift family and father figure he found. Too bad it happened to be a mob family.
I know that the parallel with him growing up to be a deadbeat dad (by default, not by choice) isn’t exactly subtle, but it’s so moving as a character motivator. Fighting to save his daughter’s life is one thing, and it would’ve been plenty to motivate a hero alone. But this circle of self-loathing and blame, desperately not wanting history to repeat itself only to find that history has repeated itself and he’s become his own worst nightmare—it gives his motivation such depth and dimension.
There’s something so fantastic about him knowing he doesn’t deserve his daughter’s love, and her just giving it anyway, not because he earned it, but because she wants a dad. It was a nice reminder for In-hye too, to realize that in covering up her own pain, she kept Su-jin from being able to ask the most obvious questions any child would ask. It’s then that we see that history won’t repeat itself this time around, at least for Su-jin. In-hye is able to forgive and look past her pain to what is best for her child, which sets her apart from Tae-san’s mother who could never get past her own pain.