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67

Mystery Queen: Episode 11

It’s a dream come true for Seol-ok to finally be working officially for the police, and with her hero, Inspector Woo, no less. But all is not as it seems, and although Seol-ok doesn’t know exactly what’s happening behind the scenes, she soon starts to realize that the friends who’ve been by her side all along might be the ones she needs the most.

 
EPISODE 11 RECAP

Seol-ok waits excitedly for Inspector Woo to start their briefing, while outside the room, Section Chief Park tries to peer through the blinds, wondering why they’re being so secretive.

Our “Special Unit Seven” members have all been demoted to rookie-level work. Kwang-tae is teaching driving rules to old people who find him boring, so they end up ditching the lesson and dancing to trot music. Dong-ki has been sent to a provincial salt farm. Joon-oh is in the Female Youth Division, where a long line of swooning high school students come to tell him about how “heartsick” they are. (Joon-oh wonders if it’s contagious, ha.)

Wan-seung, on the other hand, is stuck in Public Relations; an officer mentions that she saw him dancing earlier, but by this point, he’s abandoned the female police officers to dance by themselves, wilting in exhaustion from the mascot suit he’s been wearing. Aw, I wanted to see him dance! A group of children suddenly appear, begging him to play with them.

At the Special Investigation Unit, Inspector Woo goes over the details of Joo-yeon’s case, and as he describes the events of the night of the murder, we see them play out. She worked for a clothing retailer in Seodongmun Market and left her work dinner around 12:30 a.m. They have footage of her getting off the bus near her house, and her body was discovered at 9:30 a.m. by her landlord.

Seol-ok is unable to escape the memory of Joo-yeon’s smiling face. Inspector Woo recounts that she was found fully clothed with no evidence of sexual assault, but there were signs that she tried to defend herself, and that she was tied up. The murderer also washed her, and her entire face was covered in duct tape. By the time Inspector Woo describes this last part, Seol-ok is silently crying, and noticing, he calls for a ten-minute break.

Out in the hall, Inspector Woo asks Seol-ok if she knew Joo-yeon; when she confirms it, he tells her that she should remove herself from this case, as her emotions can cloud her judgment. Seol-ok asks to be allowed to stay, determined to catch Joo-yeon’s killer.

Wan-seung and Kwang-tae sprawl on a couch in exhaustion. Wan-seung asks when they can go back to catching criminals, saying that he’s sick of dancing in a costume. Kwang-tae points out that singing at nursing homes is no picnic either and tells Wan-seung to think of poor Dong-ki. Kwang-tae suddenly starts snoring, and Wan-seung pats his face pityingly.

Seol-ok is back in the room, and Inspector Woo now reveals photos of the five victims of the Seodongmun Market serial murders, which took place between 2008 and 2010 in that area—the infamous Tape Murder case. “No way,” says Seol-ok.

Joon-oh joins Wan-seung and Kwang-tae in the conference room, apologizing for being late. Wan-seung tells the other two that the folded laundry in Joo-yeon’s room is suspiciously neat, but Joon-oh says that the clothes in her closet were the same way. Kwang-tae points out that she worked in a clothing store, so of course she would be a precise clothing-folder. Wan-seung says that something smells, but Kwang-tae tells him to find some evidence to back up his claims.

Seol-ok asks for the victims’ cause of death, but Inspector Woo says the autopsy results are confidential, refusing even to divulge whether the cause of death was the same in each case. He points out that all the bodies showed traces of washing, ignoring Seol-ok’s question about what they were washed with. He adds that all of their faces were covered with duct tape.

Seol-ok stands up and interjects that the way the faces were taped is different. Joo-yeon’s face was wrapped from left to right, showing that the culprit is right-handed, whereas the others were wrapped the opposite way. The biggest difference, says Seol-ok, is that the tape on the previous victims’ faces was wrinkled, showing that they were still alive when their faces were covered, whereas Joo-yeon’s was completely smooth. The other victims suffocated to death, but Joo-yeon was already dead when her face was covered in tape.

Inspector Woo looks more irritated the longer she speaks. When Seol-ok declares that the Baebang-dong case wasn’t a serial murder, he tells her to stop being a nuisance and leave. Seol-ok says that it was an accidental murder, and that they must find the underwear thief. Finally, Inspector Woo yells at her to get out. She asks why everything is so secretive—does he already know that this isn’t a serial murder case?

She’s forcefully ejected, and uniformed officers prevent her from going back in. Inspector Woo comes out and tells her not to come back, saying that he’s disappointed in her. She asks if he’s made this case into a serial murder in exchange for the fanciest room in the station, a huge budget, and expert staff. He gives her a blank stare and tells her to find the murderer herself.

At that moment Wan-seung shows up and smiles at her, although he calls her a traitor under his breath. He follows her out, calling her “Seol-ok-ssi” and begging her to share the autopsy results. She tells him that they’re confidential and runs away from him.

Seol-ok ends up back at Kyung-mi’s shop. Wan-seung knows exactly where to find her, of course, arriving there shortly afterward, and notices Jang Do-jang loitering outside. The gangster takes off when he sees Wan-seung, and in his car, he receives a call from someone he addresses as “Chief Kim,” although we don’t see the man’s face.

Chief Kim tells Jang Do-jang not to get involved with Seol-ok and to stay away from Wan-seung and the Seodong Police Station. Jang Do-jang is upset, but Chief Kim says that this is Jang’s last chance; he’d better leave on the boat Chief Kim prepared.

Some Yakuza members show up at Jang’s abandoned office and trash it, which Wan-seung sees when he goes there later. He meets Kwang-tae at their regular hangout, and the team leader tells Wan-seung that the Triad and the Yakuza are searching for the drugs the police confiscated from Jang Do-jang, who has disappeared.

Joon-oh soon arrives, asking excitedly if this is a team dinner. Kwang-tae says yes, but Wan-seung grumpily says their team has been disbanded, probably because of Joon-oh, since it happened right after he joined. He thinks back to the real reason their team broke up, though, remembering his father’s presence at the police station.

Joon-oh unsuccessfully tries to eavesdrop on the Special Investigation Unit while Wan-seung tries to get Joo-yeon’s autopsy results from CSI Park. CSI Park says he’d love to see it himself; Inspector Woo’s team has taken all their material and is being extremely secretive. All he has are his findings from the scene, which he hands over to Wan-seung.

Meanwhile, Kwang-tae tries to get information from Section Chief Park, but he’s equally in the dark. Section Chief Park is feeling the pressure from his superiors and entreats Kwang-tae to stay out of this case, but he refuses indignantly. Finding out that they’ve been banned from the conference room too, the team leaves in disgust.

Seol-ok shops at her neighborhood minimart, and the owner asks if the murderer is really the underwear thief, as rumor has it. Before Seol-ok can answer, Wan-seung arrives to make her an offer she can’t refuse, as he puts it. “I refuse,” says Seol-ok. He says he’ll give her the Shinim-dong case files in exchange for Joo-yeon’s autopsy report. They agree to meet at the mart tomorrow, since Seol-ok doesn’t want to risk been seen together at a cafe. (Wan-seung is very amused by this.)

The next day, Wan-seung goes to the Shinim-dong Police Station and asks a friend, Detective Go, for the taxi case’s files. Detective Go says that those files have gone missing and claims that no one cared since it was an old double suicide. Wan-seung looks doubtful, but thanks him.

Once Wan-seung is gone, Detective Go takes the file out of his desk drawer and opens it to a picture of young Seol-ok, musing that he’d hoped never to meet this persistent girl again. He calls Chief Kim and asks him to act before things get out of hand.

Seol-ok and Wan-seung meet in front of the minimart, each hoping to get away before the other realizes that they don’t have the promised documents. They face off across a table, eyeing each other distrustfully, and they agree to exchange their envelopes at the same time. Seol-ok tries to fake him out, but he’s too fast for her. The second time, they each grab the other’s envelope and run—only to stop two feet away and angrily throw the useless documents to the ground. Hahaha!

At that moment, the owner of the mart brings out a delivery map, saying that she asked her customers and found out that many homes have had underwear stolen from them. They begin to mark homes on the map, and a pattern emerges.

Wan-seung asks if Seol-ok thinks the thief is the murderer, and she says that they have to catch him even if he isn’t. It’s an embarrassing crime to report, and even when Joo-yeon did, the police didn’t take her seriously. Seol-ok looks at him pointedly, and Wan-seung coughs and avoids her gaze.

Earnest Cop arrives to help them add locations, as does a grumbling Slacker Cop. The mart owner brightly says that Slacker Cop practically lives in the sauna, so he must know all the neighborhood gossip, and indeed, he looks at the map and says there have been far more incidents than they’ve marked.

Seol-ok’s neighbor Yeon-hee passes by, and when they ask, she says her underwear hasn’t been stolen; Seol-ok says that hers hasn’t either. Wan-seung deduces that the culprit must live nearby and teasingly asks Seol-ok if it could be Ho-chul, enjoying her offended reaction.

Kyung-suk calls Seol-ok and says she’s on her way to the mart. Panicking, Seol-ok grabs the map and runs off, forcing the rest of the impromptu investigation team to follow her to Kyung-mi’s shop. Wan-seung also calls Joon-oh and Kwang-tae to their “secret meeting,” and a bewildered Kyung-mi points them to her back room.

Inspector Woo has created his own map of incidents (are these panty-stealing incidents, or murders?) and uses technical jargon to describe his method of predicting the next target: basically, drawing circles around the clusters of dots.

At Kyung-mi’s, Seol-ok does the same thing with her marker, saying proudly that they’ve done their own geographic profiling. Wan-seung throws her a little smile and says that Inspector Woo has nothing special after all. Kwang-tae says that those outsiders know nothing about this area, and everyone nods and agrees that they know their own neighborhood best.

Seol-ok notes that the thefts always happen before 8 a.m. or after 7 p.m., which probably means the guy has a regular job and doesn’t go far from his neighborhood. Slacker Cop says that some houses have repeated incidents, and they’re all in alleys near main roads.

Seol-ok and Wan-seung say in unison, “He’s using a car,” and their eyes meet for a charged moment. Wan-seung grins and says that he and Seol-ok are in sync, which makes Seol-ok smile at him while everyone else stares at them in suspicion, especially Kyung-mi and Kwang-tae (who are standing interestingly close together themselves, if you ask me).

Since parking in the neighborhood is residential only, they deduce that the culprit must park at an empty house before he goes on his sprees, and mark the most likely spot in each of the five circles. They decide to spilt into teams and stake them out tonight. Joon-oh volunteers to go with Seol-ok, declaring that it’s too dangerous for a woman to go alone, which gets raised eyebrows from everyone.

At Seodong Police Station, Inspector Woo divides his huge team into three and dispatches them to three locations in Baebang-dong to look for the culprit’s black SUV, which they’ve somehow identified.

Seol-ok and Joon-oh hide and wait for the culprit to appear. Joon-oh takes out a small box and gives it to her. It’s a small gold whistle on a chain; now that she’s working for the police officially, he explains, she might face dangerous situations. Joon-oh says that it definitely doesn’t mean anything weird, and she teases him a bit before saying it’s pretty and thanking him.

Just then, Wan-seung calls Joon-oh and says to come right away—the culprit has arrived. The three of them approach a man in a mask who stands rummaging in the trunk of his car. Wan-seung shines a light in the man’s face as he caresses a pair of panties (ewwwww), and Joon-oh cuffs him and reads him his rights.

The man stutters that it wasn’t him—all he did was pick up a few pairs of underwear. Wan-seung points out that he never said anything about underwear and digs in the man’s pockets, pulling out more panties. “It’s not just a few,” says Seol-ok, opening a suitcase in the trunk that’s stuffed full of them.

She finally sees his face and tells the other two in shock that he’s her next-door neighbor. Despite her disgust, Seol-ok says that she doesn’t think he’s the murderer, but Wan-seung finds plastic twine, a knife, and duct tape in the trunk, and says that that’s damning enough. He accuses the pervert of killing Joo-yeon, but he denies it.

At that moment, Inspector Woo shows up with his team, sirens and lights blaring. He tells them to hand over the suspect, and Wan-seung and Joon-oh protest, saying that that they caught him first. But it turns out that he’s arresting Seol-ok for disclosing confidential information. Seol-ok protests that she isn’t even in the Special Unit anymore and doesn’t know anything to reveal. (Wan-seung asks in a whisper if she was fired, ha.)

In that case, asks Inspector Woo, how did she know that the culprit parked his car here? The mart owner, Earnest Cop, and Slacker Cop come running up, and the mart owner says that she’s the one who figured it out. Seol-ok asks Inspector Woo why he’s doing this when he knows that this man isn’t the murderer and that it’s not a serial murder case.

Kwang-tae arrives then to ask what’s going on, and the two men greet each other, Inspector Woo addressing Kwang-tae respectfully as his sunbae. Joon-oh catches Kwang-tae up to what’s going on, as the mart owner and Slacker Cop start bickering again over who found this spot. Kwang-tae gently admonishes Inspector Woo, but Inspector Woo just warns them not to interfere in any of the Special Unit’s investigations from now on.

Wan-seung asks how they can stay out of an investigation they know nothing about, wondering if they’re trying to show off by keeping all the information to themselves. Inspector Woo retorts that they’re going to take the culprit with them, since this is no case for a public relations officer and a school counselor. Seol-ok says it’s no case for the Special Unit either, since he’s not a killer.

The underwear thief pleads that it’s true and says that he was just playing a prank. Seol-ok shows them that the plastic twine has never been used, and the duct tape is dusty; he likely forgot he had it. Inspector Woo says that even if he didn’t use them, they’re a sign that the culprit is becoming more brazen and cruel. Eventually, says Inspector Woo, he’ll end up committing rape and murder.

In a dark forested area behind an abandoned building, a man in a police officer’s uniform approaches a large, covered shape. He removes the black tarp, revealing a police cruiser. Oh my God.

The pervert insists it was just a prank and claims he bought those things in case he might need them at home. Inspector Woo asks why he left them in his car then—everything in his car relates to his identity as an underwear thief, which he keeps separate from his life as a family man.

“The first murder is never easy,” says Inspector Woo calmly. “But in the end, you become a serial killer. You’re being consumed by a monster. It can’t be stopped.”

The police cruiser’s headlights turn on, and it emerges from the wooded alley.

Inspector Woo concedes that the pervert isn’t the serial killer they’re looking for and says that the Special Unit will leave him for Wan-seung’s team, since they don’t have time for petty criminals. Wan-seung bristles at this, and Seol-ok points out, “Didn’t you already know it wasn’t him?” Inspector Woo leaves without responding. Wan-seung glares after him, and Seol-ok wonders who actually killed Joo-yeon.

Elsewhere in the neighborhood, the police cruiser passes a drunk woman sitting alone on the side of the road. The cruiser slows, its driver watching her in his side mirror, until a man comes and guides her away.

Wan-seung tells Seol-ok to go home early and leave him to get a confession from the underwear thief—he’ll see her at the station tomorrow morning. She agrees, and they smile at each other. As Joon-oh escorts him to his car, the pervert asks Seol-ok not to say anything to his wife, Yeon-hee. Seol-ok just looks at him.

When she gets home, she sees Yeon-hee standing outside, her sleeping daughter on her back. They greet each other politely, Yeon-hee obviously waiting for her husband’s return. Seol-ok says good night and enters her gate, but she turns back to look at the other woman sadly before she goes inside.

The police cruiser shadows another young woman who is unable to get a taxi and waiting at a bus stop. The driver pulls up near her and tells her that this bus has stopped running, and the late-night bus stop is about thirty minutes away. She asks worriedly what she should do. Ack, no! Don’t get in the car!

At the police station, Wan-seung questions the pervert, saying that something smells off—what isn’t he telling them? The man confesses that he was afraid to be caught stealing underwear so he didn’t tell anyone, but he saw something that night. “Did you see the murderer?” Wan-seung asks urgently.

In the backseat of the cruiser, the young woman thanks the police officer for giving her a ride. He says it’s his duty, and she smiles gratefully, but then she notices that they’ve passed the bus stop. He locks the doors and meets her eye in the rear view mirror.

She begins to whimper and bang on her window. He turns up the volume of the car radio to cover her screams and smiles menacingly. The cruiser’s lights flash as it drives into the night.

 
COMMENTS

Oh no. Please don’t tell me Joo-yeon’s killer is Earnest Cop, because that would totally break my heart. I want to believe that my suspicions are wrong, because up until almost the end of the confrontation with Inspector Woo, he was with Seol-ok and her Scooby Squad—or at least, he was definitely with the mart owner and Slacker Cop when they spotted Seol-ok and Wan-seung. Once they arrived at the scene of the panty thief’s arrest, only Slacker Cop and the mart owner spoke, while the cop that was with them hid behind Joon-oh. I’m pretty sure that it was Earnest Cop, but it was dark and we didn’t get any clear shots of him, so he could have crept away during the argument. Hopefully it’s just a very clever misdirect.

It was satisfying to see how quickly Seol-ok lost her hero worship for Inspector Woo once she realized that something was off about him, especially since she’s been ignoring Wan-seung in favor of Inspector Woo for a while now. Seol-ok’s ability to analyze people objectively can make her seem insensitive at times, but it’s also one of my favorite things about her. It’s not that she lacks empathy, because as we’ve seen with her reaction to each crime so far, she has a warm heart that motivates her to work even harder to figure out the mystery behind every case. The disillusionment caused by Inspector Woo’s prevarications was clearly painful for her, but that didn’t stop her from challenging him repeatedly, even though she never actually got any answers from him.

Speaking of this aspect of Seol-ok’s personality, I enjoy how the gender dynamic of Seol-ok and Wan-seung seems switched in comparison to what we usually get in cop procedurals, and how that challenges stereotypes in subtle but interesting ways. For example, in Seol-ok, we have the logical, brilliant, but emotionally obtuse detective that is usually cast as male, whereas it’s Wan-seung who is emotional, clingy, and heavily reliant on his intuition to tell him which direction to take in a case, all of which are typically seen as feminine traits. He’s also way more into her than she is into him, which I find hilarious. Although she does seem to be coming around, and it’s cute beyond words! I also really like that they’re starting to really appreciate each other’s investigative styles, and that they’re figuring out ways to make them complement each other rather than butt heads as they used to.

Inspector Woo is a cipher so far; he’s been quietly self-contained since we were introduced to him, but what seemed like a quirk of genius at first is starting to take on a more sinister aspect. I was especially struck by the flatness of his voice when he predicted the underwear thief’s eventual escalation to rape and murder—he didn’t have the urgent tone one might have when warning someone of danger, but a clinical, almost anticipatory matter-of-factness that honestly creeped me out. There’s also the question that Seol-ok has been asking all episode: Why has he falsified and hidden parts of the investigation, and who is he trying to protect? There’s an unavoidable link to Wan-seung’s father, of course, but there’s also CEO Ha’s relationship to both Ho-chul and Jang Do-jang. Now we also have this mysterious Chief Kim and the unexplained link all of these people have to Detective Go and Seol-ok’s parents’ case. With only five episodes left, I hope we start getting answers soon.

On a lighter note, how adorable were Seol-ok, Wan-seung, and the Baebang-dong crime fighters in this hour? They’re great as a group, but we also had a lot of wonderful one-on-one moments, like Joon-oh telling Kwang-tae that he’s his first, last, and only Team Leader, or the continuation of Wan-seung and Joon-oh’s love-hate bromance. I love how our Sherlock and her Watson have gathered this team of what many might consider losers into a cohesive unit committed to protecting their neighborhood.

Inspector Woo and the higher-ups in the police bureaucracy might dismiss them, but our Scooby Squad has shown clearly that their strength lies in their connection to the place they call home, and their treatment of each crime as serious and worthy of their attention. I really like how this speaks to the larger conflict that we often see in dramas of underdogs fighting for acknowledgment and success in the face of a large organization that wants to crowd them out in favor of its own agenda. In this case it’s not just one powerful actor but quite a few that have invisibly joined hands against Seol-ok and her friends, and I can’t wait to see how this motley band of detectives resists and hopefully defeats them all.

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Sometimes I wonder if dramaland cops are stupid because those veterans with skills end up demoted and doing mundane stuff.

Like, why is WanSeung suddenly running around in a costume when he's the station's "Sniffer". And why is JoonOh, the guy who was chosen for the Intelligence Unit suddenly going to high schools to hear about heartaches? I don't get it, seriously! Even if their team breaks up (I don't even know why), there must be some other place they have to go!

And 1000 million years of hell to that murderer.

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Whole team is disbanded by superiors who are given orders by some big Thug-in-suit. Its shown in the episode itself. You can complain about the positions they are given but you can't much say about the logic because its right there. And no to mention The most horrible father of KdramaLand is trying to wear off Wan Seung.
Who knows how many sons lives this Bald father gonna ruin.

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Disband, fine. But why throw them to do things waaay below their skill-set?

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I feel like the higher ups are doing it on purpose - so these boys know not to touch the people they say they shouldn't (aka the drug dealer). Or it could be WS's father doing so his son would quit police force.

The first few scenes with them doing these menial duties are hilarious!

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This is a radical thought - but what if WS's father is doing all this to protect his son and get him out of his painful past. We haven't really seen him do anything terrible except for getting the house demolished (which maybe, just maybe, is defensible, if it was holding WS back). He could be a 'tough love' kinda guy, and just flailing around wanting for his son to feel better.

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Yes! I can't understand why the entire team is demoted to doing such mundane stuff. How is it possible that WS's dad is involved in this-he wants to wear out WS and make him return to the law firm? How can someone not involved with the police make so many huge decisions for the police and make them follow them faithfully? Sometimes, the logic seems off.

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The whole somewhat screwed up prosecutor system in Korea may be changing, but politics... http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2017/05/251_229083.html

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I suspect it's the hamfisted way the higher ups are using to keep them away from the Jang Do Jang case as much as possible. In real life, it would have been super suspicious that these talented cops are being shoved into these jobs. It practically screams "threats/bribes are involved! someone is trying to bury something!"

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I love how Wan-seung was so proud of himself when he came to the same conclusion as Seol-ok (re: the car). It's like when you're an average student and suddenly ace an exam that no one but the top student aced too!

I hate this show for making me excited last week that we're getting Inspector Woo together with the team and then turning him into an unlikable guy "in real life". I thought he kept Seol-ok in the team because he saw the genius profiler in her. But now he's being mean to our "Special Unit 7". *grumble grumble* (Just kidding, Show, I luff you, please keep playing with my heart, but DON'T BREAK IT.)

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Perhaps inspector woo already knows something from the autopsy report that the killer is from the police force.
As such, he acted very defensive and had to keep this info from the team. By lying to Seok ok he is curbing the info from leaking knowing she could potentially alert the culprit unknowingly.

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Forgot to add, if the killer knows that they are aware a cop is the culprit then he will cover his tracks before they located him. The only thing is that, how would everyone reacted when a second murder occur because they didn't act upon the classified info as soon as possible.

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I don't see how he would know that from an autopsy report. I suspect he is covering for some higher up guy.

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I was so excited that the dream team has formed last week, only to be disappointed that they were disbanded immediately after.

Inspector Woo hates the special unit seven for some reason. Maybe they represent the kind of police officers that he detest or something. Even if he suspects the perp to be part of the police force, there is no reason to treat the team so harshly or impolitely.

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1. THE NEIGHBORHOOD SQUAD!! I was not expecting that at all!! The group dynamic is great especially when they're all casting glances at Seol Ok, Wan Seung and Jung Oh. I could watch a show about them solving all the crimes in their neighborhood

2. I'm lowkey shipping Kyung Mi and Captain Bae

3. Does Inspector Woo already know who the culprit is? I'm getting really bad vibes from him

4. *Fingers crossed the bad guy isn't the earnest cop*

5. Theres 5 episodes left but so much to cover: her parents murder, her shady husband, Jang Do Jang, the death of Wan-Seung's lover, his shady father. I assume all of these things are connected but how??

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Agreed - still a LOT of loose ends to tie up here, and not much time. With the duct tape thing I am wondering if there are two killers - perhaps Woo is or is associated with one?

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I was thinking the same. (Full disclosure: I've already watched episode 12). Is this really 16 episodes instead of 20? I think they need 20 episodes to satisfactorily wrap up all the storylines.

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I really really hope they make this into 20 episodes drama, this drama is the highlight of my week!

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I've never seen a Scooby squad assemble so quickly. Within five minutes they're all in a secret headquarters and deferring to Seol OK as their leader!

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I'm totally lowkey shipping them too!

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I am also shipping KM and KT. They are so cute together, when they were talking to each other.

Indeed, there is so much ground to cover for another 5 episodes. I am surprised that they are still going for another random episode of the week case instead of tying up the loose ends pertaining to the leads' back stories, JDJ, SO's shady husband and how the family is going to come to terms with SO's secret sleuthing. I am surprised too, that they actually brought in a new character, Inspector Woo, so late in the game.

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we're on the same boat my dear!! what you said was exactly my thoughts hahaha....

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hahaha #2 - me too!

I love this series, but I've been super worried about how it's only 16 episodes. I really like the pace, but it's more fit for a 20/24 episode drama, especially now that we have Inspector Woo. I'm also wondering if WS's lover is really dead or if she ultimately survived (but maybe comatose) and was forcibly relocated and hidden.

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Mysteries that still remain:
1. Woo - he is obviously fishy, but is he a criminal, perp, or just a giant suckup to higher political powers?
2. I she REALLY married to the prosecutor, or is that some kind of long running fiction?
3. What ever happened to her sister - is she just written out of the picture now?

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Re: Number 2, I've wondered that, too! Like they made her his "wife" like in the movie My Little Bride, but that it isn't a consummated or even a public ally acknowledged wedding, and that SO put up with it because she wants to retain her only living family.

Sadly, I have only been able to read the recaps, so I may be missing many many things.

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2. They are sharing a bedroom and a bed...

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I must have missed that part.

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For point 3, are you talking about HS? HS's story arc is over, so she is no longer relevant to the show. That's why we are seeing less to none of her now.

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With the ongoing arc we have, I'm not even curious how she's doing.

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I know it's a crime drama, but I really enjoy all the scenes outside of the police work, like the neighborhood squad, it just warms mi corazon

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What is the Section Chief's name? I have a sneaking suspicion he is Hong's father.

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His name is Park Sang-man, so unless Joon-oh has a birth secret, I don't think they're related.

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They can't possibly squeeze in a birth secret so late into the show!

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This is my current favourite show - lovin' it!

The only bit I don't like is that all the victims in all the murder cases are young, hapless women. Are there no other kinds of crimes?

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The crimes are skewed toward the women, aren't they? Given they are the more helpless gender in Korea, I guess it throws the spotlight on the unwarranted violence against women in the country. There are even documentaries on this theme. I am sure there are other crimes against men too, but rarer?

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Not just in Korea. I feel like it's a universal thing that there is a disproportionately more unsolicited violence against women. In addition to stranger danger, they experience violence from people that they should have been able to trust - husbands, neighbors, and cops, which makes it all feel more tragic and more unfair.

I think with the viewing audience being mostly female, these tragedies feel more relatable. Many women have faced the male entitlement situation involved in Joo-yeon's murder.

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Sadly, even in real life these types of crimes are skewed towards women.

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I agree absolutely! It's just a bit frustrating to see only women (usually young) as victims here. But, I guess the super-clever Seol-Ok, Ji-Won, Kyung-mi and the minimart owner (and even the annoying in-laws) do manage to show a fuller picture of women's roles in society.

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I have been enjoying this show a lot and it has even gotten better to me with the neighborhood squad mixed with the police

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This is what i had mention in previous recap - There are 2 people involved. Its just that both work independently and one is the killer.
There was no other way for the killer to be in the room.
Windows was an option but then it new question arose why was killer hiding from the girl if he wanted to kill her.

Fake profiler is real profiler and knows our Ahjumma's efficiency level. Ahjumma out of team but Inspector Woo also seems to have some emotional link with this gross and inhuman killing spree.

Time to watch episode 12

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Scooby-Doo Squad!! Perfect moniker for the group!

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The term was used self-referentially in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and this episode really reminded me of that!

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Why weren't we at this point in the plot 3 episodes ago? This show has been mind numbingly slow with its plot and character development and now that we finally arrive at where we all wanted this show to be, it is almost over...

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Yes! This! And there are still so many loose ends that they have not yet started to tie up!

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While I enjoy everything else about this show, I'm irritated with it's pace. Seems like they try to be unique from any other procedural drama where the story go so fast by going funnily slooooooow.

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I'm a bit confused about Laica and a few others here worrying about Earnest cop being the killer. Isn't Earnest Cop the young chief Seol-ok worked with in the beginning on the case involving the lockers and Jang Do-jang? The actor who starred in Cheer Up? The uniformed guy masquerading as a police officer with his own police cruiser hidden under a tarp is NOT the same actor, clearly. Am I missing something?

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The one you think is Hong or The Cutie Pai Cop, the one with the crush on Seoul Ok. The Earnest Cop is the second cop from the substation, that helped Seoul Ok find the shoes few episodes ago.

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I agree with you. Their voices are different and their faces too. The killer has a pointed chin whereas earnest cop has a round face.

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I love Officer Hong's adorable crush on SO. It's so cute! I would be shipping them together, had it not been for WS.

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I love how they, the "losers", unintentionally gather to create a Scooby Squad, and Seol-ok naturally become the leader. Honestly I didn't see it coming. I thought the drama would take the police procedural route with the Special Unit. But, I like this route much better.

The comedic interludes continue to amuse me greatly, which in this episode is the Seolok - Wanseung exchange scene. :D

I never like Inspector Woo, and in this episode I'm so happy that Seol-Ok is a match for him words for words (because Wan-seung clearly would lose every arguments between him and Inspector Woo).

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SeolOk-WanSeung exchange scene - I was like I have to make gif of that scene hahaha.

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Maybe because I watched I Remember You too many times, but Inspector Woo reminds me of Seo In Guk's Lee Hyun who is also a cold criminal profiler and borderline sociopath.

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Inspector Woo seems to have a burden on his shoulders, the way he is behaving. It's as if he is trying to compensate for something in the past. Perhaps he was like SO and WS in the past, and something happened, so he changed.

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Thank you for the recap! I wished more people watch this show. It has its flaws, but it's really good and you like almost everyone in it. That's my favorite kind of show.

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Yes! I wish more people like this show too! It's an easy watch, and the characters are endearing and adorable, especially Officer Hong. Ha! It's also quite different from the cop and thief shows we are accustomed to watching on Korean TV.

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This show is the Queen of Mytery, indeed. With all those mysterious characters around our leads, I'm worried that the rest 5 episodes will be jam packed.

Love the makeshift war room at KyungMi's back store and their Self-Appointed Special Team. How wonderful it would be if they can become officially acknowledged after catching the culprit.

BTW, for some reasons, KwangTae TeamJang keeps giving GongYoo's vibes.

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And the way SeolOk never hasitate to stand up against Inspector Woo when she sees something off about him shows that she'll not hasitate too when it comes to her dear hubby. I'm relieved.

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Wan Seung is def harboring a tiny little crush on Seol Ok, he's giddy like a schoolboy when he had the same deduction as SO (we are in sync!) and keep teasing and picturing her husband as the undies thief.

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WS is definitely crushing on SO, especially when he keeps describing her as the cute and pretty woman to others whenever he is looking for her. Only Officer Hong calls her cute and pretty, the other person who is crushing on SO. Ha.

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I didn't realise how much I've come to love this show until I started getting nervous that we've only got 5 episodes to go. This could easily be a 20 episode drama for me.

I also did NOT expect to be rooting for a romance between our married lead and her detective partner. But I'm loving how much Wan-Seung is into Seol-Ok and I'm starting to feel like maybe she's feeling something also. I love how their best-friends have spotted the interest between the two.

The Neighborhood Gang is awesome. I hope this continues. I'm still suspicious of Inspector Woo, even though they gave him some back story this week. He just doesn't sit right to me.

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It is gratifying to know that Seol-ok is willing and able to speak up and question when she sees that a situation is unclear, anomalous or ambiguous such as when she challenged Inspector Woo during the review of the case. She still has that in her and it hasn't been stifled, she just choses to not put it into practice in her home life.

Speaking of home life, now I'm curious how this situation will be clarified, as well as what the husband is or isn't involved with, given the episodes we have left. We'll see.

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I'm glad too that SO's admiration for Woo did not stop her from questioning his conclusions and actions. She's not afraid to rock the boat or buckle under his authority. Her confidence I think, derives from belief in her deductive capabilities.

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I am really enjoying this show. I usually watch Nordic or American crime shows so it's nice to see a crime show that is not as dark as some others I have seen (though sometimes the cheery music during a murder throws me off a bit).

I am also loving the two leads. They are both great detectives in their own ways.

P.S: I don't know if anyone else noticed, but Seol-ok has two pointed teeths which gives her a cute vampire smile. I think it's super adorable. ?

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I first suspected Earnest Cop also of being the bad guy - Now I'm going to have to go re-watch his scenes to see if anything suspicious stands out to me. One thing is that he was called away from the original underwear thief report. Is that suspicious?
I loved the neighborhood gang as well! I did wonder how Seol-Ok distracted mother-in-law with the grocery store thing and then still went to a secret meeting and was gone until late at night....why didn't MIL call again when she couldn't find Seol-Ok at the grocery?? That seemed a little off.
I'm hoping they will be able to tie up all the loose ends in the remaining episodes!

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Not sure how this drama will pull off a romance between the two leads, or if they'll even dare to go there. There's obviously a ton of chemistry between Seol Ok and Wan Seung, but Seol Ok's actions in previous episodes show that the family she married in to means the world to her. Unless her prosecutor hubby turns out to have been the one to have killed her parents (which seems impossible, given the flashback of the two meeting), I just can't see Seol Ok leaving the family that essentially adopted her. Would a Kdrama actually give us this bickering love-hate relationship without intending it to go anywhere? Two weeks left to see, I guess.

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How will they wrap up everything in 5 episodes especially with the speed of this show? Unless the pervert murders, SO's parent's case, her husband, WS's dad & the drug ring are all somehow internally linked for one big reveal in the final ep.
I agree with everyone else, they should extend it to 20 episodes, I really like this show despite its' sloth progress.

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Does someone knows he name of the actor who plaus earnest cop???? I had been looking for it without luck

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You know what angers me so much about this drama? The constant abuse of power. If you notice, the people who are doing all the hurting are those who have sworn to protect. Lawyers, policeman, politicians. All of these people are supposed to make citizens feel safe, but are doing the exact opposite. It's even sadder because it's just a depiction of real life. Makes my stomach hurt.

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