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63

Police Unit 38: Episode 4

Between a fracturing team and a mark who turns out to be cleverer than anticipated, Jung-do will have to think and move fast to keep his plans from falling apart. An old friend is determined to place hurdles in his way and seems a lot less friendly than we initially perceived, and Sung-il finally gets to laugh a little at his nemesis, which is just as cathartic as it sounds.

 
EPISODE 4 RECAP

Outside the real estate agent’s house, Sung-il repeats his lines under his breath like a nervous student as he walks up to the door. Sung-hee watches him from her car and makes a call to the police to report a con in progress.

Ma Jin-seok’s real estate agent, Mr. Noh, comes back with the money withdrawn from all his bank accounts, just as directed, and Jung-do sits him down to sign some papers, vaguely blaming information leaks on this age of smartphones.

Sung-il knocks on the front door and introduces himself as a police officer to Mr. Noh. He asks Mr. Noh to come to the police station for an investigation into his voice phishing complaint. Mr. Noh denies making any calls to the police, which flusters Sung-il. He gets nervously argumentative and grabs Mr. Noh’s arm, insisting that he come down to the station right now without asking any questions.

Watching Sung-il’s antics, Jung-do suggests that maybe someone from Mr. Noh’s office made the call, but Mr. Noh is already suspicious of Sung-il and belligerently refuses to go. Matters worsen when Sung-il refers to Jung-do as “the guy from the audit office,” even though they have yet to be introduced.

Jung-do finally intervenes and tells Mr. Noh that it’s a small formality and begins to lead him out the door, when Sung-hee walks in. She tells Sung-il to leave immediately if he doesn’t want to be arrested by the police and informs Mr. Noh that they are conmen.

Jung-do takes off his official-looking ID tag, knowing the game is up, but Sung-il refuses to leave alone when he was the one to start the con. As Sung-hee begins to understand how deeply involved her Chief is in this, the cops arrive on the doorstep.

They ask everyone involved to come to the police station despite Mr. Noh’s protests that he’s left a lot of money unguarded in the house. Mi-joo watches them drive away and makes a call.

At the station, the cops ask Sung-hee and Mr. Noh to wait to have their statements taken, and lead the two con artists away. As they walk down the hallway, the scene cuts to Mr. Noh’s house where someone enters, changes his pants, puts all the money in one bag, and settles on the couch to watch TV.

Back at the station, Jung-do asks Sung-il why he didn’t run away, and Sung-il says it would have been embarrassing to run away by himself. Jung-do comments with a smirk that he’s a good man. In the waiting area, Sung-hee suddenly realizes that the cops used her name and Mr. Noh’s name, even though she hadn’t told them what it was.

At Mr. Noh’s house, two new uniformed policemen arrive to inquire about someone reporting a con, only to be greeted by Burner, who tells them they must have been prank-called. A little while later, Mi-joo picks up Burner outside the house with the bag full of Mr. Noh’s cash, looking mighty pleased with himself.

At the police station, Sung-il and Jung-do are escorted through a long hallway, and they just keep walking and walking… all the way through the other side of the station until they end up coming out the back door. Jung-do smiles and tells the “cops” that he’ll buy them drinks. They clap him on the back and leave, while a confused Sung-il follows Jung-do to a waiting car.

Sung-hee runs through the station looking for the two and just misses them in the parking lot, as Wallet and her henchwoman drive them away. In the car, Jung-do says, “This is what we call a scam. It’s fun, isn’t it?” Sung-il, still grinning from relief, can’t quite deny his enjoyment.

The gang meets Mr. Noh later and puts down their terms. He gets all his money back, but only if he helps with their con on Ma Jin-seok. Sung-hee tracks Sung-il down to the team’s lair and tells him they have to talk. She shares a loaded glance with Mi-joo before leaving, and Wallet mutters that outsiders keep walking in.

Sung-il tells Sung-hee everything over soju and pork skins, but all she has to say is that he shouldn’t go through with it. Sung-il says he understands her position, and agrees that a civil servant shouldn’t be trying to collect taxes by scamming people. But Sung-hee says that that’s not her point. She’s afraid he might get hurt and Ma Jin-seok isn’t worth his life.

When she can’t convince him, she tells him that she’ll get the tax money out of Jin-seok. Sung-il points out that with Commissioner Ahn covering for Jin-seok, it would be impossible, but Sung-hee walks away determined to save Chief.

Jung-do is waiting for Sung-hee outside and comments that she’s learned to drink now. He asks why she decided to be a public servant when she studied art. She tells him that after her experience with him, she craved the security a government job could give.

He laughs awkwardly and says she must be close to Sung-il. Sung-hee admits that she likes him because he’s honest, unlike Jung-do. She walks away before he can say more, telling him not to talk to her again.

At the office, Sung-hee approaches Section Chief Kang and asks for his help. They combine the two section teams and Chief Kang reads out the particulars of Ma Jin-seok’s case. They go out determined to get the tax money out of him that day.

The teams visit all the family members who have had property signed over to them by Jin-seok, but despite their best intentions, they get thrown out and abused everywhere they go. Finally, Sung-hee calls up Jin-seok in frustration and threatens to report him to the prosecutor’s office unless he pays his due taxes.

Back in their lair, Jung-do lays out his plan to entrap Jin-seok. He points to an area on a map and tells the team that they will be selling 16 acres of land worth about $240,000 to Jin-seok. This land, he explains, hasn’t decreased in value in over 500 years. And to sell this unicorn of the real estate world, he needs Wallet to spread the word and lure in the mark.

Wallet looks less than impressed by the plan but before she can say anything, she gets a call from her henchwoman. She arrives at her office to find detective Jae-sung sitting in her chair, drinking her tea. He tells her pleasantly that he’s heard she’s working with Jung-do, and asks what the scam is.

Sung-hee gets called in by Commissioner Ahn for harassing Ma Jin-seok’s relatives. She asks for his help in prosecuting Jin-seok, but he just tells her to apologize for her actions and promise not to do such a thing again. Sung-hee leaves without another word.

Wallet and Jung-do examine a plot of land that meets Jung-do’s specifications. He’s pretty happy but Wallet cuts his thanks short by saying that she’s taking herself out of his plan. She tells him that a detective came by and seemed to know that he had scammed Mr. Noh.

Jung-do tries to appeal to her by saying that no one else can cast the bait to Jin-seok in his plan, but Wallet tells him to either use Mr. Noh or give up the scam. Jung-do doesn’t want to trust Mr. Noh with such an important part, but he says he’s determined to see this to the end.

Wallet looks at him curiously, asking what his real reasons are for pursuing this. She finds it suspicious that Chairman Wang is looking out for a punk like him. She says things don’t add up, and tells Jung-do that her ex-husband once told her that you could date a man who’s been married once before, but you shouldn’t date an aging bachelor, because you can never know his insides. Wallet says that’s what Jung-do is to her, because she can’t figure out his intentions. Jung-do looks caught but doesn’t answer her. She leaves saying that he can keep the land as a farewell present from her.

As soon as Jung-do gets home, someone knocks. It’s detective Jae-sung, and he strolls right in with a friendly smile. Jung-do watches Jae-sung’s shoes track dirt into his living room. It clearly bothers him but he doesn’t say anything.

Jae-sung admires his fancy pad and asks Jung-do whether he rents it or bought it with money he swindled from people. He smiles and says almost playfully that he heard about the real estate scam Jung-do’s planning.

Jung-do acts innocent, and Jae-sung pats his cheek repeatedly in a faux affectionate manner, each hit getting sharper. When Jung-do finally blocks his hand, Jae-sung asks if he wants to end up like his father. A dirty cop and his conman son. He asks if it runs in the family.

When Jung-do says it’s not like that, Jae-sung slaps him hard. He tells Jung-do that if he’s going to pull a con job, to do a big one, because the ones he’s doing now will barely get him any jail time. Jae-sung tells him to pull a big job and then he’ll send Jung-do to jail to rot in there, just like he did to Jung-do’s father.

After he leaves, Jung-do calls someone and tells them that Wallet has dropped out, so now they have to change their plan.

Next day, Jung-do starts the first step of their con on Ma Jin-seok. He asks Burner about the screen golf place Jin-seok visits often. Burner confirms that he visits thrice a week, and Jung-do tells Mi-joo to get a job there. Mi-joo turns up in her earnest, pretty-young-thing guise and nabs the receptionist position.

Next, Keyboard brings out some remotes. They take these to the golf place and test them from behind the counter where Mi-joo stands. With a little help from Burner, they hack into the system and Mi-joo can remote-control who scores what on the virtual golf screen.

Finally, they need a player. Jung-do looks around and his eyes alight on Sung-il studiously taking notes. He laughs at the ridiculousness of the idea while Sung-il looks up to find everyone watching him.

At the golf place, Sung-il wields a club and takes shots at the ball, repeatedly failing to actually hit it. When Ma Jin-seok walks in, Sung-il has to coach himself to not approach him first. But Jung-do’s advice to be patient like a crocodile evaporates in the face of Sung-il’s nervousness.

When he finally manages to hit the ball, Mi-joo ensures it’s an albatross and Sung-il is loud in his celebration. This gets Jin-seok’s attention and Sung-il hilariously squints at him, as if trying to recall who he is. Jin-seok greets him and asks what he’s doing here. Sung-il just says that golf is a small hobby of important men.

Jin-seok scoffs at his pretensions, trying to act as if he belongs in a place visited by the rich. He taunts Sung-il by bringing up Sung-il’s daughter, and how a poor child is studying under the same teacher as his own well-off daughter. He says it makes him sick.

When Sung-il had worried that he would mess up the plan just like last time, Jung-do had told him that he needed to focus on why they were doing this. Now, Sung-il recalls his words. Someone who doesn’t pay his taxes has no right to look down on people based on money.

Sung-il remembers the way Jin-seok had thrown their poverty in his daughter’s face and his eyes harden. He puts away his club and calls Jin-seok out. He tells him to stop mouthing off and play a round of betting-golf with him. Jin-seok laughs and says Sung-il has no money, so why should he?

Sung-il says he can’t take bribes since he’s a government officer, but he needs to buy a new car. He tells Jin-seok to bet enough money for a car and in turn if he loses, Sung-il will stop pursuing him.

From the look on Mi-joo’s face this wasn’t in the plan and was not what Jung-do had meant when he told Sung-il to “follow your instincts.” They decide on a bet of about $1000 per hole up to a total of $10,000. Sung-il exchanges a glance with Mi-joo and then the two players begin to take turns.

Initially, Jin-seok gets a few good shots, but when Sung-il begins to play, he takes hole after hole, pulling out money from Jin-seok’s reluctant grasp. Jin-seok’s shots conversely deteriorate the longer they play.

Jin-seok’s disbelief keeps him from seeing anything fishy until he sits back and watches Sung-il’s abysmal footwork. He looks back on a hunch and thinks he sees Mi-joo pressing something. He immediately goes up to her to examine her counter, and thinking quickly, Mi-joo dunks the remote in her glass of cola and sips from it as Jin-seok looks through her desk.

Sung-il calls him back to play again, but Jin-seok calls an end to the bet. In the washroom, Sung-il asks if losing the money is burning him up. Jin-seok retorts that he thinks of the money as a donation. Sung-il laughs and invites him out for a meal, saying that he can’t keep money won in a bet anyway, so he’ll treat Jin-seok to a meal and return what he won.

Wallet watches the news, as another increase in tax is announced. She calls her henchwoman “Daughter” and asks why corporate taxes keep decreasing while the taxes on the common people rise. Is it because the laws are set by the rich? Wallet says that she’s rich, but this isn’t right.

More out of curiosity than anything else, Jin-seok goes out for that meal with Sung-il. But he can’t make himself eat in Sung-il’s company and asks what Sung-il actually wants from him. Sung-il’s phone rings and he excuses himself to go out and speak to “Section Chief Kim.”

Sung-il loudly bemoans not having enough money to invest in Hwaseong’s New Town development, which could supposedly make him enough money to buy several Mercedes-Benzes. On the other end, Jung-do tells him to stick to the script and not go off on a car-related tangent.

When Sung-il comes back to the table, Jin-seok is suddenly a lot friendlier. He asks Sung-il about the investment opportunity he was talking about and after hesitating a little, Sung-il tells him about this junior of his who works in Hwasung’s City Planning Affairs. Sung-il says this “Section Chief Kim” told him to buy some land in an area that the city is planning to develop. Right before the government announces this plan, the land prices are expected to go drastically up.

Jin-seok asks what the profit is expected to be, and when Sung-il says five times, he laughs that that’s impossible these days. But he excuses himself to go use the restroom and make a call to Mr. Noh, who receives it under the watchful eye of Jung-do. Jin-seok asks about the land development and Mr. Noh sells it hard, advising him to invest everything he has.

On returning to the table, Jin-seok proposes that he fund Sung-il’s investment. He’s willing to give Sung-il five percent of the profit if Sung-il fixes up a meeting with his Hwaseong junior.

In the office the next day, Commissioner Ahn tells Sung-il to pay his rent and start taking time off since it’s unlikely he’ll be able to keep his job after the disciplinary hearing.

Sung-il asks if Commissioner Ahn was the one to warn Jin-seok about their raid on his house. Sung-il wonders how he faces his child without embarrassment. Commissioner Ahn tells him that he’ll look deep into the bribery charges and ensure that Sung-il can’t step into this building again.

Jin-seok comes looking for Sung-il in his office and insists that they go see his Hwaseong junior today, even though the date they fixed is two days away.

Sung-il tries to stall, but Jin-seok tells him that he thought about it, and finds it suspicious that things are aligning so perfectly. He tells Sung-il that people come at him for his money all the time—some come to scam him and others come to jail him. He deals with such people by changing the date on their meetings unexpectedly, like he’s doing right now.

None of Sung-il’s excuses work, now that Jin-seok thinks he smells a scam. So they get in the car, and Sung-il calls up “Section Chief Kim” and tells him that he is coming to Hwaseong with Jin-seok to meet him today.

Half asleep, Jung-do tells him not to joke around. But when Sung-il repeatedly says that they are coming to meet him today and arriving in Hwaseong in an hour and a half, Jung-do finally wakes up enough to register that he’s serious.

Just then, detective Jae-sung gets a call from Mr. Noh informing him that Jung-do is about to pull a con that day.

Jung-do frantically gets into his car and drives for Hwaseong, in a desperate attempt to somehow get there before Sung-il and Jin-seok. He calls Keyboard and tells him to get to the site in an hour. He cuts Keyboard’s complaints short and tells him that if they can’t pull this off today, then everything will go wrong and they’ll all die…

He’s mid-sentence when a semi-truck rams into Jung-do’s car at full speed, spinning him off the road. Through a haze of pain, Jung-do opens his eyes and tries to focus, as blood trickles down his forehead.

 
COMMENTS

I never expected a crime-caper drama to make me laugh so much. While most of that humor is focused on Sung-il, we’re never made to laugh at him without also being in perfect sympathy with him. One of my favorite moments in this episode was right after Jung-do and Sung-il escaped from the police station in Wallet’s car, when Jung-do had mentioned how fun scamming was, and Sung-il couldn’t deny how much fun he was having. It’s such a genuine moment. Sung-il deserves a little fun, but more importantly, he gets to feel the high of fooling a system that has consistently worked against him. His core principles would never let him see the world in the gray shades that Jung-do does, but in this case he just scored a point against the law he’s come to realize is a bully to the weak and the poor. Not to mention, he’s enjoying the biggest adrenaline rush of his life.

The other perfect scene was of course when he kept scoring on the virtual golf screen while Jin-seok could only curse his luck. I loved seeing a laughing Sung-il. Obviously he needed that moment too, because with that boost in confidence, his scamming talents started improving drastically. Later, when he called “Section Chief Kim” to let him know of the change in schedule, I was grinning so hard at Sung-il trying not to sound like he was tipping off his partner in crime. He’s getting good and I get the feeling that Jung-do might find it harder to con him out of the final payoff than he had assumed.

Jung-do has suave down to an art form, which is why his vulnerable moments hit us that much harder. Nobody who knows him could ever imagine that he would let anyone get away with hitting him, let alone avoid eye contact and flinch in their presence. Jae-sung, in this episode, is a completely different presence in Jung-do’s life. Initially, he’d seemed parental and wise. Now, he seems almost obsessed with tormenting Jung-do and asserting his power over him.

The scene in Jung-do’s apartment was chilling for so many reasons. I had the sense that Jung-do’s passive acceptance of Jae-sung’s verbal and physical abuse was years in the making. It’s perfectly possible that Jung-do had learnt the hard way not to fight back. Which is why I find it interesting that his desperation to finish this con seems so deeply connected with his relationship with Jae-sung. Wallet was absolutely right when she guessed that he was playing a different game. And there are shadow players in this that we haven’t yet met.

The other themes that I really appreciate in this drama are those of trust and courage. These are exemplified by Sung-hee in her dogged determination to save the friend she cares for. Just like Sung-il, she is deeply honest, though perhaps less gullible. Her fight to protect Sung-il mimics the situation that he was in years ago with the friend who had been accused of taking bribes. When that friend had asked for Sung-il’s help to fight against the system, Sung-il had refused out of fear and distrust.

At this point, when Sung-il thinks back on that incident, he only sees that the laws that should have protected them, failed both him and his friend. Naturally, his faith in the legal system is shaken. But, Sung-hee hasn’t given up the fight yet. It’s possible that her battle is doomed and she may end up disappointed just like Sung-il, but at least she’s trying to fight within the system, which is something that Sung-il had never done for his friend.

 
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Sung-Il is like a big teddy bear, and for all his past bumbling and wimpiness while just waiting out his pension, I can't help but love how he is starting to get into this "work around the law, not with it" justice. This show surprised me - just keeps getting better and better.

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The more i watch Seo In Guk, the more i am blown away by how talented he is . Nobody can do cheeky criminal like he can . It's like he's really internalised the role.

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As I had stated before, think Yoon Doo-joon would have been good in the role as well, but SIG is surely hitting it.

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Yoon Do Joon would have been a great charmer, but SO not a swindler. Seo In Guk has always had it in him. His whole presence long cried out for a role like this.

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Yoon Doo-joon has the patter down, he'd make a very good swindler but just in a very different style from what SIG is doing here.

Personally, I'm a sitting duck for the devil-may-care edge SIG brings to the role, that is something I can't see Doojoon replicating.

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This is the episode that got me interested in watching and not just fanboying it up. They step up everything and take some interesting choices by showing real vulnerabilities in the facade. I loved it!

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Yes! Thank you, festerfaster!

I'm with you, I laugh a lot for this drama. I thought SIG would carry the comedy, but actually it's MDS who's so hilarious in this one. I loved when he was messing up the con with the real estate agent and SIG was making faces at him, and he kept trying to dig his way out but was just making it worse. And his atrocious golf swing (although I agree with Sungil, the ball IS too small).

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The scenes where Sung-il tries to learn the ropes of the con were hilarious, esp. the ones where he was trying to "chat up" women and failing until the last one.

For a crime caper - this has had funnier moments than most romcoms.

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Really liking this episode. That detective Jae-sung, I can't figure him out. He seems really shady now. I bet he was the corrupt cop and somehow framed Jung-do's dad. I may be wrong but weren't the 2 cops that helped Jung-do and Sung-il
part of Jae Sung's squad?

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Jae Sung is such a bully.. what makes him so righteous? Gahh, each time he appears on screen my blood just boil.. I was disappointed with Wallet for pulling out after Jae Sung's visit. Please have some faith in Jung-do (yep, it's my inner fangirl talking) ..

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Yup, I was whisper-yelling at the screen, take off your shoes! And then when he slapped Jungdo, oh no you didn't!

And to Jungdo, stop letting that guy into your apartment!

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Now that I've become so accustomed to Kdramas, and I myself don't wear shoes in the house, I was appalled and felt so bewildered when Jae-sung just marched right in with his street shoes. I was literally reacting just like Jung-do. Gosh, that was such a hard scene to watch overall. So amazing that the guy who plays this awful man here is the sweetest Chicken Ajusshi in Lucky Romance!

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Me: "go away, i hate you"
Son: "which show are you watching?"
Me: "take off your shoes. stop slapping him"
Son: "not the witch drama then"

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lol your son knows what's up

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A vulnerable SIG is heart- breaking. I really want to know details about Young Do's relationship with that police chief (Chicken ajhusshi from Lucky Romance). Sung Il is just adorbs.
Thankyou for the recap festerfaster, and the screencaps!

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So are Jung Do's scenes with his Dad. I felt like crying when watching those scenes.

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Ikr, when the corrupt cop slapped Jung Do hard, I was like oh no you didn't. We can really feel Jung Do's fear and his supressed anger at that moment.

SIG definitely nails it again at portraying a wide range of emotions. No wonder his performance with PBG last year in IRY is an unforgettable ride on displaying complex emotions.

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Ha, I love how we're already assuming that Jae-sung is corrupt. I think so too but maybe he's one of those twisted people who are just high on power and like to flex their muscle believing they're on the right side of the law.
That would be an interesting character to explore. Someone who doesn't do anything illegal (technically) but is morally just as bankrupt as Jin-seok. I wish they would put these two in the same scene. They would probably be besties.

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He's like Dolores Umbridge.

He thinks he's fighting for what's right but he's just a despicable person through and through.

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I had not considered a Dolores to ever be fighting for what's right. She fought for what gave her power which might be a fair comparison to this dude.

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In her (and this detective's) point of view, they're doing what's right aka "cleaning" the world or restoring order or some cowpoop. :(

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@mary I am so tempted to start pontificating about HP but I'll refrain. This is probably not a great place to start comparing motivations. Meet me in the open thread next week and we can dissect it there! Please <3

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@Oshi if you're going to talk Harry Potter, I want in! OotP was such a great book when it came to making the point that the "good guys" can be insidiously evil or just plain oblivious to what they're doing, and how governments can lie to their people (especially interesting in light of the events of the year in which it was released).

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Great analogy. He fits Umbridge to the tee, except I think he has deeper motivation

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I really love Sung-il and Sung-hee's relationship, it's a bit like he's her 'office dad' and she's the grownup daughter. So far, from what we've seen of her, she's too principled to willingly do what she thinks is wrong, but her affection for Sung-il saves her from coming across as boring or straitlaced. So I'm looking forward to seeing how she's brought into the team, I mean what could even get her to agree to something like that?

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That's what I am thinking, too. What could eventually get Sung Hee to join the team and make her work with Jung Do, a guy that she distrusts so much? I am glad that this drama gives us a character like SH, who despite experiencing challenges in the system that is working against her, is still doggedly doing her best to fight within it to save a dear friend.

I also liked her confrontation scene with JD outside the resto. SH seems to still be hurt by their past and it is also obvious that JD still cares for her. Mi Joo is again the only one in the team who knows what's going on.

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I can't think of anything short of duress that would bring her in, even though she's already shown discomfort with certain aspects of her job (the repossession stickers on the poor man's home in the last ep), she still believes in following the rules and more importantly, she doesn't trust Jung-do as far as she can throw him.

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Aw, Jungdo was like a little puppy crouching outside the door and jumping up to see her. So cute.

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Thank you for the recap!

I was shocked by the detective's attitude towards Jungdo too; in the first episode, he'd seemed almost a fatherly figure but here.... Yikes. I wonder what hand he had in sending Jungdo's father to jail. I'm really looking forward to seeing how everyone's stories tie together in the end.

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yeah, he seemed like a parent figure earlier but now he seems like a total nightmare parent figure. Yikes.

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Uh, idk what happen but this is supposed to be a reply to ObsessedMuch above.

Anyway, that scene when Sung Il tried to con Mr. Noh but keep failing, Jung Do's expressions is priceless. I love it when he rolled his eyes haha.

This just reminds me again how I always enjoy SIG's acting.

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Question: As it is, how can Sung Il take off so much time from work to have training and meetings with Jung Do and Co and not be questioned by his boss who’s out to get him? Or is he doing everything on his lunch hour? Did Sung Il get placed on administrative leave in Ep. 4? I know the boss was talking to him about vacation time, but I wasn’t sure if he was telling him that he’d been placed on administrative leave pending his disciplinary hearing. If he is on admin. leave, that would get around the job problem and leave him free to be a full time member of the scammer team.

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I might have missed the details but I thought he was suspended until the disciplinary hearing.

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I think Sung Il was asked about this earlier by Jung Do and he said that he his boss wouldn't mind as his job involves a lot of field work.

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I know Ma Jinseok is the villain here, but I love the way the actor plays him. He has great comedic timing and is always enjoyable to watch. I love to hate the guy and I will be pouty when he's out of the picture.

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I read somewhere, he's going to act again with SIG in Shopping King Louie. I can already seen the bromance between them. ?

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hahaha dramabeans featured it in the news bites. Count me in! I can't wait to see how he could portray his role as a good neighboor and mentor for SIG. Must be funny and exciting! :D

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Sung-il can't fake an absolute lie that's why he talks about betting to buy a car or investing in land to buy a car. It's only when he mixes lies with a bit of truth that he becomes more comfortable in the con. And I think Sung-il's funny fixation about cars helped convince Ma Jin-seok to take him seriously.

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That's a really good point! He does seem much more confident when mixing personal truths with the lie. Which of course just means that he's learnt to lie really well now, since that's a pro-move. =)

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That's a great point, and it's also how lie detectors get beaten - mixing a little of the truth into the con gives Sung-il an 'in' to believe in it and help pull it off.

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Thanks @ festerfaster, and what a cute, funny handle! :D I like the alliteration.

I'm enjoying this show so much and am so glad to see it recapped. It has started coming into it's own with the team forming and more of the fun con methods in play, with a great balance of the comedic and the suspenseful. Just got to love a show that gets me all worried and excited and amused in a good way. And what a great cliffhanger! :)

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While it's an entertaining show, does anyone else wonder about whether the characters are more plot points to drive the plot than actual individualized fleshed out characters?

I previously pointed out the lack of gang's motivations in joining the con, but now Ma Jin Seok for some reason trusts that Sung-Il is on the up-and-up with him with just one call to his real estate advisor even though Sung-Il was doing his damnedest to collect on the taxes beyond accepting bribes or being threatened. It just doesn't seem plausible.

And why he doesn't just go with his real estate advisor who seems to know some of the details of the deal....

I hope they don't do more plot-driven motivations for the characters that'll jar me out of my suspension of disbelief, because the acting is spot on, and I DO like the capery feel of the drama, along with the theme and general plot.

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I agree! Wouldn't you get suspicious of someone who has been trying so hard to get your taxes?

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Maybe he thinks all gov't employees are scum who can be bought and bribed and that no one is immune to money.

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+1
Yup, that's what I think too. He demonstrated in the very first ep that he thinks money can buy everyone.
Also, it's a bit far-fetched to imagine that an upright civil servant who refused his bribe would suddenly work to scam him. The commission at least is very much a legal thing in Jin-seok's eyes and he can't imagine Sung-il might not see it that way.

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Either he's an upright civil servant or he's susceptible to money.

If he's susceptible to money, he'd very much want to scam Ma Jin Seok if just for payback.

If he's upright, then, he'd be even less trustworthy in not trying to take Ma Jin Seok.

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That's exactly the impression I got - Ma Jin-seok thinks that Sung-il's principles are all for show or don't run that deep, and that anyone can be bought for enough money/if they're in a corner. And since he knows he's got Sung-il in a corner, it's not surprising that he thinks the staunch tax collector is now willing to be bribed.

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Except that he just gave back $9,000....

That doesn't sound like someone who is swayed by money....

And it's not so much the bought aspect. It's the mortal enemy aspect in which Sung-Il has acted like he's a mortal enemy of Ma Jin Seok. I have a hard time believing that someone who clawed his way to that much money would not be untrusting of people who have shown themselves to be his enemy....

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imo it's more like he thinks he has Sung-il by the throat following the complaint and threatened disciplinary action plus he knows he's poor and in need of money, so he doesn't actually think Sung-il is much of a threat.

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Ok. I guess I could see that.

Thing is I take mortal enemies seriously, but I guess he could think he has him neutralized enough, but it's weird that he would give power to someone else he thoroughly had powerless.... I would tend to think people like him would be more ruthless....

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I think it has a lot to do with his understanding of Sung-il's motivations - like I said, he really thinks principles are only skin deep and possibly that Sung-il's going after him is a result of some kind of misplaced envy and not ethics, and that now that he's dirtied Sung-il's reputation, he (thinks he) has the upper hand and Sung-il has no reason to resist him or stick to his guns.

And let's not forget that from everything he knows of Sung-il, he's principled and that straight arrow totally extends to his personality too - it would be totally out of character for him to do a con, so MJS has made the mistake of thinking he's neither smart enough nor crooked enough to be part of fabricating and perpetuating such a huge lie.

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Huh? I'm probably just misunderstanding your question, but he IS suspicious of Sungil, thus the last scenes of this episode. The real estate deal (if it was real) is a legitimate deal, not illegal, so Sungil wouldn't have a problem with it.

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Exactly, he's not trusting Sung-il at all but his greed is bigger and he doesn't want to miss a great opportunity to make some big cash.

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I had only seen Ma Dong Seok in Bad Guys, and he did left a good impression on me. I think it was the first non-romance kdrama I ever saw. But I think he's even better here, he's hilarious and a good actor for humor it seems.

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"If we meet again, don't even say hi. You disgust me." wooaah that line! still curious about what happened between SH and JD in the past. She must have been badly hurt yet I believe that JD actually still loves her. There must be a certain major condition....

That part when SI and JD got caught by SH and they went to the police office--- I was really nervous only to know that everything was set by JD, leaving SH in confusion. Bravo, Jung Do!

Seo In Guk never fails to amaze me with his brilliant act. He is underrated but we know for sure that he is just as great as other popular names in the industry.

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I will bet money Jung-do engaged in some noble idiocy to get Sung-hee to break up with him before he went to jail.

And your last sentence is way accurate. I wish he'd have a hit prime time drama on one of the Big 3 already, just so he could get a chance at those big-name projects he could slay. He's head and shoulders over most of his fellow '87ers, acting-wise - talented and versatile. What more could we want?

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Watching SIG in this drama, it is indeed a great injustice that he is not as popular as he deserves to be. He is a fantastic actor, despite his short acting résumé. Like you, I am hoping that he'll have a hit prime time drama soon.

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I am kinda hoping that King Shopping Louie will be a hit despite its mainstream plot and its tough competitors. Surely it won't be easy but we have got SIG here! Hopefully people will be tuned in as we'll be :D

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It's a shame his Big 3 dramas haven't caught on even if I Remember You got great reviews - the 'hitmaker' writers of this decade seem to draw their leads from a very small pool based on marketability rather than talent (though talent is often an accidental bonus, let's not kid ourselves that it's the main priority in casting decisions).

I feel like it'll take a major sleeper hit of some kind for SIG to be able to break into that pool, and because time is running out, I hope Shopping King Louie will be it. Though I'm not optimistic about any MBC drama.

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maybe if SIG did a movie... he is more suitable for a movie anyway, his oneness with the character is what a movie actor should have. then if it was successful, he´d be sought after for dramas more... what do the empty balloons with pretty faces drawn on them have on an actor?

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That cliffhanger gave me a fright! That's when previews come in handy.
I love the comedy, Sung-il has got a knack for it. The less cheerful scenes are also great, the part with that detective in Jung-do's apartment is so aggravating but so much telling about his background.

Thanks for the recap!

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What a great episode...better prepare myself before the writer-nim and PD-nim con me with the rest episodes.

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Thanks Festerfaster for the recaps! Totally love this show - I always look forward to Fri and Sat evenings! Since I love Bad Guys - I had expectations for this one. Healer, Bad Guys, and Signal - my top 3!

All the characters are unique and the story is so good. SIG smiles so much in this drama that it so contagious - you just kinda smile with him. I might have to go back and watch the drama before this one. I kept falling asleep on ep3. Will definitely try again!

Love Love this drama!

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