The Good Wife: Episode 10
So many bombshells are dropped this episode, forcing Hye-kyung to figure out just how much honesty she really wants from the people around her. However, the most exciting part of this episode is that we finally get lots and lots of Myung-hee, who proves that she’s the boss (or one of the bosses) of M&J law firm for a reason.
EPISODE 10 RECAP
Myung-hee informs Joon-ho that he’s being let go, and he’s completely shocked. He dazedly says that he worked hard and did his best, but apparently it wasn’t enough. Hye-kyung tries to talk to Joon-ho after he leaves Myung-hee’s office, but he just brushes her off. Hye-kyung admits that even though she “won,” she doesn’t feel that comfortable about it. Dan reminds her that she’s earned it, though.
Joon-ho’s only the first of the day’s lay-off announcements, however. Ha, it looks like someone didn’t take their newly unemployed status very well, as Joong-won dabs at the coffee that was apparently thrown into his face and all over his once-crisp white shirt. He calls Hye-kyung, who’s nearly home, and he says he didn’t have a chance to properly congratulate her.
She asks how it’s going at work, and he watches one irate newly ex-employee being dragged out by security, all the while shouting about the injustice of so many good workers being let go but the boss’s girlfriend gets to stay. Joong-won just tells Hye-kyung that they can forget about what happened and remain just as friends and colleagues. He also reminds her that she’s a capable lawyer who earned it through her hard work, despite what anyone else might say.
Her kids give her a big congratulatory hug when she gets home, but she’s more surprised that they even knew about her being permanently hired on. Tae-joon called them, and also said that she would take his case, too, because she’s such a good lawyer. In the privacy of her bedroom, she pulls out her phone. But the first name her fingers to go in her contacts list is Joong-won, although she doesn’t call him.
Hye-kyung meets with Tae-joon in prison, asking if he’s responsible for getting her hired on at M&J. He denies it, but she persists, asking why he told the kids she would take his case. That’s because his lawyer (who I suppose deserves a proper name now) Oh Joo-hwan has now joined M&J, bringing along his client list — which includes Tae-joon. So he’s now officially one of the firms’ clients, and therefore Hye-kyung can be his lawyer.
She’s not pleased by this, since it makes it look like all her hard work was for nothing, but Tae-joon insists he did it for her and the kids. He knows that she can’t afford to become unemployed while he’s in prison. Even though he was confident she would be hired on based on her skills, he still wanted to play it safe.
But if she doesn’t want to defend him as his lawyer, she doesn’t have to. He tells her that if she wants, she can just pretend he doesn’t exist. Of course, he wants her to stay by his side, but it’s not like he’s going to force her. Ugh, what classic manipulative behavior. Hye-kyung tells him that she won’t do anything she doesn’t want to do, and she certainly won’t do anything just for him. With that, she walks away.
Back at the firm, she helps Joon-ho pick up his belongings that fell out of his “I’ve been fired” box. She apologizes for what happened, and he bitterly asks if she’s sorry she beat him, or if she’s sorry for what she did to win. He hands over the brooch he found in Joong-won’s office, and she quickly explains that it’s not what he’s thinking.
Joon-ho says he’s not the one who has an old friend or husband to go to for a job. He’s had to instead rely on hard work to get where he is. He regrets trusting her, even if it was only for a moment. Hye-kyung leaves him to gather his belongings alone, and he exits the building with one last bitter “do you really mean it?” when Dan says that she’ll see him around.
Lawyer Oh makes his official greeting as one of Hye-kyung’s new colleagues. She snubs his attempt at a handshake, instead asking if proving Tae-joon’s innocence is so important that Lawyer Oh would go this far. He explains that having her by her husband’s side makes him seem more innocent and pure, which is why he’s had her appointed at her husband’s lawyer.
Ignoring him, she goes to ask Myung-hee if they only kept her because it meant getting Lawyer Oh, and Myung-hee asks if it matters — Lawyer Oh is an excellent lawyer who will bring in many clients (and their money) to the firm. Myung-hee reminds her that she doesn’t judge by connections — she really did choose Hye-kyung after deciding she was the best fit for the firm. It was just a bonus that it worked out for everyone.
Feeling defeated, Hye-kyung tries to hold back her tears as she slowly walks to her office. She passes by Joong-won’s office, and stares into the empty office, struggling to hide her emotion when the effervescent David Lee bounces by.
Joong-won’s busy judging a mock trial for a bunch of law students. Or rather, he’s busy playing a game on his phone, barely paying attention to what the potential lawyers are arguing. Haha, it looks like he’s doing this as a favor for Soo-hyun, who apparently has given birth since the last time we saw her and now has a super cute baby.
One of the law students is frustrated with how Joong-won is ruling the “court,” claiming he’s favoring the prosecution. After class, Soo-hyun tells him he should be nicer to the students, just like he should be nicer to his clients. Then she knowingly asks about Hye-kyung, and suspiciously watches him walk away after his brisk “she’s fine.”
Over drinks, Dan tells Hye-kyung she shouldn’t feel guilty about keeping her job, even if Tae-joon did have something to do with it. She told Hye-kyung before that she should use all the connections she had, anyway. Plus, she can consider this part of her alimony, since it’s not like she could get anything else if her husband’s in prison.
Hye-kyung’s determined to wallow in her depressed funk, so Dan snatches her phone, threatening to call Joong-won and tell him that Hye-kyung is drunk and asking for him. Ha, I love how everyone is trying to still set the two of them up. Hye-kyung says she was just momentarily confused, wondering if she could follow her heart and forget her responsibilities as a wife and mother. She was scared, knowing that if she went to Joong-won, there was no turning back.
She sighs as she admits that she thought she was better than her husband, and she looked down on lawyers that only cared about money. Dan says that she is different, but Hye-kyung says she was only being arrogant. She’s planning to make up with Tae-joon — it’s not that she trusts him, but no one’s perfect. Besides, she has to think of her kids, and they want their father.
Dan asks if she could forget about right or wrong or responsibilities, what would she really decide to do? Hye-kyung takes a sip of her alcohol, and then firmly says that she would try to start over again with her family. Dan’s not buying it, but lets it slide since it seems to make Hye-kyung feel better about her decision.
Hye-kyung wonders why Tae-joon would fire such an excellent investigator over a simple transgression of looking into a closed case, and Dan just says there were also personal reasons. Just then her detective buddy Kim Mu-yul (who apparently isn’t a detective but an investigator for the Prosecutor’s Office) joins them at the bar.
Hye-kyung takes that as her cue to leave, and Mu-yul warns Dan that the internal investigation has discovered Tae-joon’s missing files, but it’s suspicious how little corruption is mentioned within the reports.
On her way out, Myung-hee stops by her brother’s office to tease him about his convenient interest in judging law students when the rest of the firm is focused on Tae-joon’s case. They joke about the mock trial details (based on the “Hansel and Gretel” fairy tale) until Joong-won cautiously brings up Hye-kyung.
Myung-hee knows what he’s going to say, and reassures him that she won’t pressure Hye-kyung into taking on the case if she doesn’t want to. Besides, with Guk-hyun gone, Tae-joon will win anyway. The prosecutors can at least try to make a mockery of him, and as Mu-yul hands over a subpoena to Dan, ordering her to be a witness in Tae-joon’s trial, he explains that’s exactly what they plan to do.
Myung-hee introduces herself to Tae-joon, declaring that she will be representing his case personally since it’s such an important trial. Lawyer Oh balks at this (because he wants Hye-kyung), but a glance from Tae-joon makes him keep his mouth shut.
She lays out the case: Guk-hyun’s disappearance means all the original accusations are based on circumstantial evidence, but Myung-hee knows about the internal investigation file compiled on Tae-joon. She warns him the prosecution is looking for it to find more ammo to use against him. Tae-joon isn’t worried, though, and smugly tells her that they won’t find anything worthwhile in it.
Myung-hee thinks different, and as she and Lawyer Oh leave the Prosecutor’s Office, she knows that there must be something incriminating in that file. She reassures Lawyer Oh that they’ll win the trial, but if there’s anything about Hye-kyung in the file, he’s ordered never to speak to her about it.
Dan tells Hye-kyung that she’s now a witness in Tae-joon’s trial. Hye-kyung starts to ask about what she found in Tae-joon’s file, then thinks better of it. She ruefully admits that she used to always want to know the truth, but she’s discovered the truth is more painful than it’s worth.
Dan asks her if she wants Tae-joon out of jail, and the way she asks makes it seem like she can alter her testimony to either help or incriminate Tae-joon. Hye-kyung says yes, if he’s innocent. She doesn’t want to know anything more than that.
During the trial, Chief Prosecutor Choi’s confidence is overwhelming when he calls Dan to the witness stand. He asks her what was the last case she worked on for the Prosecutor’s Office, and she says it had to do with a tip someone gave them that public officials were being bribed with sexual favors from call girls, and then blackmailed afterwards.
Even though no names were used in tracking the public official’s information, Dan affirms that one of the call girls was Amber. However, there wasn’t enough information about the clients to find out their identities. For example, one client was a judge with three daughters, and as Dan goes into detail about this “unnamed client,” Tae-joon’s judge looks mighty shifty since he’s known to be a judge with three daughters.
Dan explains that if she released information about the rest of the clients, innocent people could be hurt due to false assumptions. Myung-hee springs up to declare that sexual favors are irrelevant to the bribing case and the contents of the file shouldn’t be released without thought of whom it might unintentionally damage.
The squirming judge immediately agrees with her and dismisses Dan as a witness, telling Chief Prosecutor Choi that he’d better find something else to use as evidence than just trying to stir up a scandal for no good reason.
Class ended, Joong-won’s eager law student trails after him, desperate to know why he overruled all her objections except one and to figure out what she did wrong during the mock trial. He sighs and tells her that she needs to learn to simply accept whatever the judge says — a judge is an honorable position of respect, and if you want to win, you have to appease the judge.
The student is surprised that the trial is based on the whims of the judge’s mood instead of evidence, and Joong-won explains that a judge’s personal feelings will affect their final decision, even if the official ruling is based on evidence. The student is a fast learner as she turns on the aegyo, asking her mock judge for more “real life” trial tips.
Hye-kyung has been rebuffing Mu-yul’s efforts to talk to her, but he finally goes to see her at her office to tell her that two pages are missing from Tae-joon’s file, and Chief Prosecutor Choi is convinced the missing pages are proof that Tae-joon was bribed. Hye-kyung wearily tells him that if he wants to talk to her, then he can get a warrant.
Prosecutor Park sighs when he sees Dan waiting for him. She demands to know exactly how much he knows about the missing two pages, and he reveals that he knows when she called herself Kim Ji-yong, she sold intel from the Prosecutor’s Office and then when Tae-joon found out, she slept with him so he wouldn’t tell anyone.
He hid the pages because he still wants a job once Tae-joon is freed, and then asks her if she still “sees” Tae-joon. Dan insists she only slept with him once, and for her, sex is nothing special. Prosecutor Park wonders if Dan has been helping Hye-kyung because she feels guilty for her actions, then warns her that she should cut her ties with Hye-kyung before Tae-joon is freed. The original investigator who opened the case has mysteriously disappeared, and Prosecutor Park implies that the same thing could happen to Dan, too.
As Tae-joon is escorted to the courtroom, Hye-kyung waits in the hallway for him. The guard and Lawyer Oh step aside to give them privacy, and Hye-kyung tells him that she’s decided to believe what he said about becoming a better person. It’s not because she likes him — it’s strictly for the benefit of their family.
She also requests that he be honest with her so she can stop wondering what he’s hiding, and he tells her there’s one more thing he’s been keeping from her. The trial commences, and Hye-kyung’s absence is noticed by Lawyer Oh. Whatever truth Tae-joon told her is something she must take a moment to process, apparently.
Chief Prosecutor Choi plays a video confession of the late Guk-hyun, where he declares that Tae-joon was really the greedy one — he was just a pawn. Myung-hee springs up to object, and she and Chief Prosecutor Choi argue back-and-forth about the legality of using the video footage considering the mysterious circumstances of Guk-hyun’s death. Chief Prosecutor Choi seems to win the argument by insisting that Guk-hyun’s testimony would be the same even if he was able to walk through the door right now.
Just then someone enters the courtroom — it’s Guk-hyun! He’s alive! And what timing! He’s the “one thing” that Tae-joon was still hiding from Hye-kyung. That night when Tae-joon stabbed Guk-hyun’s hand was also the night when Tae-joon cooked up the plan to make it look like Guk-hyun committed suicide, with the full intent of using Guk-hyun later to discredit Chief Prosecutor Choi.
Joong-won is still overseeing the mock trial, but he’s distracted by watching the news of Tae-joon’s trial on his phone. The law student finally gets his attention when she requests that he remove himself as judge since she believes he can’t act arbitrarily. He patiently explains again that he has nothing against her personally, but she interrupts to declare she wants him removed because he likes her.
She uses the evidence that he met with her in private and gave her tips on how to win the trial. He’s taken aback, but he can’t really argue against her request.
Guk-hyun is put on the witness stand, and Lawyer Oh stands up to question him but Myung-hee is the one who beats him to the punch. Hee! Guk-hyun declares that he faked his suicide to go into hiding because the prosecution forced him to lie in his testimony, but his sense of honor wouldn’t let him stay away when he heard what they were saying about Tae-joon. Pffft.
Myung-hee requests that the prosecution’s video testimony be thrown out of court, but Chief Prosecutor Choi furiously insists that Guk-hyun is perjuring himself right now. In the end, the judge decides to throw out both sets of testimony, declaring them unusable for the trial.
Afterward, Myung-hee tells Tae-joon that if he’s planning any other funny tricks like that, to tell her ahead of time. She doesn’t like surprises in court.
Hye-kyung, waiting outside the courtroom, gets a message from Lawyer Oh that the judge will soon make an official sentencing. At home, Tae-joon’s mother and the kids impatiently flip through the channels, wondering why the news hasn’t reported anything. Hye-kyung calls them, telling them she hasn’t heard the verdict yet either — but based on the way Chief Prosecutor Choi angrily storms out and the way Myung-hee gives her a little nod, she knows that Tae-joon is free.
The kids and Grandma are delighted and they dance with joy. As the reporters pester Tae-joon with questions and take endless photos, he pulls Hye-kyung into a hug, thanking her for her support.
At the firm, Dan and Joong-won watch the news report. Myung-hee calls him to let him know they’ll be throwing a celebration party later, and Dan carefully watches Joong-won as the news replays Tae-joon and Hye-kyung’s hug.
David Lee greets Hye-kyung when she returns to the firm, congratulating her. She tells him that she’s not going to get a divorce, but he just tells her to let him know when (not if!) she changes her mind. Hahaha, I’ve missed Grandma’s “Jaws” ringtone! She’s calling to let Hye-kyung know that she’s arrived at the firm with the kids to join the party. After Hye-kyung hangs up the phone, she picks up her brooch that Joon-ho returned to her — the one that fell off during her kiss with Joong-won.
Dan interrupts her reverie to congratulate Hye-kyung. She’s heading out, and explains that it’s not because she doesn’t want to see Tae-joon — it’s just because she doesn’t really care for the firm’s parties.
Tae-joon, out of his prison blues and back in a snazzy suit, runs into Prosecutor Park at the courthouse. He tells the prosecutor that he’ll see him again soon at the Prosector’s Office — looks like Prosecutor Park’s betting on Tae-joon will pay off.
Myung-hee checks in on Joong-won, wondering when he’ll join the party. One of the assistants passes along a message from the law student, telling him she’ll buy him dinner to make up for the way she treated him during the trial. Myung-hee is amused by the thought of Joong-won dating a college student, but Joong-won just watches as Hye-kyung’s kids run up to her at the party.
Grandma tells Hye-kyung that she’s proud of her for keeping the family together — they’ve weathered the storm and can now enjoy a time of peace. Aw, it’s a little sad how clueless she is, but it’s nice seeing the kids so happy.
Hye-kyung slips upstairs to Joong-won’s office, where he congratulates her, then teasingly asks if she’ll still be coming to work since she no longer needs to support her family. She tells him she’s worked too hard to stay here to leave now. Damn straight. As she signs her employment contract, she asks him how he first got to know Dan.
She used to sell information when she used to work at the Prosecution’s Office — he even got some intel from her back then. Some of the information was false, though, because she was using it as bait to catch some heavyweight criminals. It took him awhile to figure out who she really was because she used a fake name, but when she was fired from the Prosector’s Office, he managed to convince her to join M&J.
Hye-kyung asks if she went by the name Kim Ji-yong, having remembered it was the name Prosecutor Park called her, and Joong-won affirms that it’s true. He then sincerely congratulates her on her return to law — she feels like the Hye-kyung he used to know. Aw, there’s just so much understated meaning in their simple business-like handshake.
Mu-yul arrives at the party to ask Hye-kyung about the missing pages from Tae-joon’s file. He’s figured out that it has to do with an affair Tae-joon had, but Hye-kyung, annoyed, asks him if he came all the way here to just to tell her that. Yes, because for Mu-yul, the truth is the most important thing — isn’t that how it is for Hye-kyung, too?
Dan runs into Tae-joon as he’s arriving and she’s leaving the party, and she tells him that Hye-kyung is is a good person — he shouldn’t make her suffer any more. The congresswoman is there as well, thrilled about Tae-joon’s innocent verdict, and eager to talk.
Mu-yul tells Hye-kyung that he hasn’t been able to find out anything about the affair except for the name of the woman. But he’s been unable to find anyone in Tae-joon’s life who has the name Kim Ji-yong, so he thought he would ask Hye-kyung just to be sure. Stone-faced, Hye-kyung tells him that she’s never heard of that name before.
Tae-joon arrives at his celebration party, and Hye-kyung watches from the second floor as he works the room. As everyone else cheers him, she turns and walks away.
Oh, Tae-joon. You are a sexy charismatic force, but you are a terrible human being. The way he manipulates and uses the people around him is enthralling and infuriating — he’s so incredibly good at it, but I fear for everyone caught in his web. Who knows how much further he’ll be able to extend it now that he’s free and is able to regain the power he once had?
I’m already in anticipatory anguish for Hye-kyung and Dan. I treasure their friendship — not the least because it seems like they don’t have many people in their lives they can trust and be honest with — and now that’s being taken away from them. Perhaps Dan should have been honest from the start, but then again, so should have Tae-joon. If he was so easily appeased by Dan sleeping with him to hide the fact she was selling information (and misinformation), then it means that Amber was not the “one time mistake” he keeps claiming it was. (Then again, are any of us really surprised? Yeah, I didn’t think so.)
However, I am thrilled that Myung-hee finally gets to take that step into a mentorship role, and I really hope we get more scenes with her and Hye-kyung together. Hye-kyung needs someone to lean on — or at least trust — since apparently everyone else around her is a liar or wants something from her. It’s kind of amazing that she’s been able to stay as idealistic as she is, all things considering, but I’m wondering if she’s finally reaching her breaking point. She started out believing in the truth, but now she’s discovering that the truth only seems to beget more hurt and lies.
Finally, thank you, show, for giving me the Myung-hee court scenes that I’ve been craving! I loved watching her do her thing as Tae-joon’s lawyer — especially when she demanded that he treat her with the respect she deserves. I love that she’s determined to protect Hye-kyung, even though a few weeks ago she didn’t want to keep her around. But Hye-kyung is now a part of her firm, and therefore she is a part of Myung-hee’s defacto family. Honestly, seeing Kim Seo-hyung own her scenes (like the boss she truly is) in this episode makes me wish even harder that they had utilized her so much earlier. Bt at least the frustration over Hye-kyung’s and Joong-won’s ill-fated barely-begun romance has now been overtaken by excitement in watching Myung-hee mold Hye-kyung into the kick-ass lawyer she’s meant to be.