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Suits: Episode 14

Da-ham’s mistake could very well cause Kang-seok to lose everything, and he’s scrambling for a way to salvage the situation. It’s only a matter of time before Kang-seok’s famous cold facade cracks and his emotions get the better of him. With even his most trusted people seeming to turn on him, Kang-seok may not be able to talk his way out of this one.

 
EPISODE 14: “The best way to keep a secret is not telling it to anyone.”

Ji-na chases Yeon-woo down in the lobby, distraught. She yells loudly, “What’s wrong with you? Did you have to take it that far? Why did you do that?!” But he doesn’t answer…

We backtrack to Da-ham’s dismissal as Kang-seok follows her to the lobby. Yeon-woo and Ji-na are watching from a short distance as Da-ham looks at Kang-seok tearfully for a moment, then turns to go.

Instead of returning to his empty office, Kang-seok sits in a conference room and has a drink. Later he shows up at Yeon-woo’s apartment, and when Yeon-woo asks if he’s drunk, he declares that he’s never been drunk in his life. Yeon-woo says that Da-ham knows his secret, and Kang-seok tells him that AK also knows.

Yeon-woo asks why Kang-seok didn’t protect Da-ham, but Kang-seok snaps that if he’d been forced to resign, or sent to prison, he couldn’t have protected her anyway. He wishes out loud that she’d told him about the fake memo when she first found it, and Yeon-woo is all, “Fake memo?”

Kang-seok explains that the quality control manager didn’t write the memo, it wasn’t officially sent, and Da-ham didn’t receive it. He concludes that it was put in evidence to trap him, and Yeon-woo takes a second to process this, then realizes that Da-ham must have destroyed the memo before they could prove it was forged.

Yeon-woo asks gently why he’s not doing something, but Kang-seok just says, “Tomorrow… tomorrow I’m going to work like nothing is wrong, and have a normal workday. I’ll try to find a way to resolve this. But if this goes wrong, you’ll have to find another job. You can now discern things and make the choice yourself.”

David Kim sends an updated agreement to Kang & Ham, this one saying that they’ll ignore the destruction of evidence if Kang-seok is fired and his law license revoked. If not, they’ll hold the entire firm responsible and disclose the situation to the media. DH advises Ha-yeon to take the deal, but Ha-yeon defends Kang-seok.

DH tells her that Da-ham’s mistake is Kang-seok’s mistake, so they have to do this before the partners find out that Kang-seok endangered the firm. Ha-yeon sneers that DH has finally revealed the true reason he returned, and he asks how it feels to be in his shoes.

Yeon-woo decides to talk to Kang Ah-young, the daughter of the man whose family was killed in the by the faulty wheel. She tells him that her family was having financial problems when her mother and brother were killed in the accident. When her father died, she nearly gave up on life, but then she was promised an insane amount of compensation money.

She asks Yeon-woo what he would have done in her place, then scoffs that he has no idea how she feels. He just says that she should be compensated, because the wheel was faulty, but he promises that the attorney defending the company didn’t know.

Ah-young remembers Kang-seok as a handsome man in a slick suit, and she recalls how she cried when he blamed her father for the accident in court. She says she doesn’t care if he knew about the faulty wheel or not, because Kang-seok’s tongue was the problem.

She stands to find Kang-seok nearby, and she asks him angrily if he’s here to ask her to drop the suit. Kang-seok says that Yuno Motors is planning to compensate her for damages, but that if she files another suit against him and his firm, it’s double indemnity (being compensated twice for the same incident). He adds that he truly didn’t know of the faulty wheel, and if this goes to court, the prosecutor will have to prove that he did know.

Instead of answering him, Ah-young pulls out her phone and calls someone (David?) to tell them that Kang-seok came to see her just like he said she would. She asks what to do, then walks away, shoulder-slamming Kang-seok as she passes.

Kang-seok tells DH and Ha-yeon that he’s going to take the case to court. DH is skeptical that the memo Da-ham found was fake, and when Kang-seok insists she didn’t know it was fake, DH accuses him of blaming his secretary or the firm for his mistake.

Kang-seok reminds Ha-yeon that she once said he speaks for her and the firm, but she recalls also saying that senior partners can’t afford to make mistakes. DH interrupts that he doesn’t care if Kang-seok goes to prison, but since this also affects the firm, he’s making the decisions.

Ha-yeon stops Kang-seok when he snaps that the firm belongs to Ha-yeon, not DH. She tells DH to continue pursuing a settlement, but on one condition — David Kim will have to prove that Kang-seok made a mistake.

DH nods and saunters out, and Kang-seok tells Ha-yeon that DH is trying to get rid of him so he can take Ha-yeon’s place. Ha-yeon just yells that Kang-seok shouldn’t have fallen for DH’s trap, so now he has to face the consequences.

On his way back to his office, AK pulls Kang-seok aside and plays him the tape from Geun-shik’s bug, guessing that that’s how DH found out about the lawsuit against the firm. This time Kang-seok waits in Geun-shik’s office, and when the rat returns, Kang-seok shoves him into a wall and grabs the recorder from his pocket.

Geun-shik has the nerve to claim that he’s trying to help Kang-seok, though another shove has him confessing. He thinks that Kang-seok has told Ha-yeon about this, but Kang-seok says he’s not like Geun-shik. He vows to have Geun-shik’s law license revoked if he keeps behaving this way, before storming out.

He’s still furious when he gets back to his own office, and he sweeps everything off his desk in a fit of anger. It’s still a mess when Yeon-woo arrives to ask what Kang-seok plans to do, but Kang-seok asks if he’s just worried for himself.

He says he’ll take the case to court once he proves the misunderstandings, and Yeon-woo voices the same fear as DH — that the firm will lose their clients’ trust. But Kang-seok just says that Yeon-woo needs to decide what to do about his own future.

Ji-na finds Yeon-woo brooding and tells him that Da-ham isn’t answering her calls. Yeon-woo asks what she thinks of him, and when she says he’s a good person, he asks, “What if I’m not a good person like you think I am? If I’m a conman full of lies, will you still consider me a good person?” Thinking a moment, Ji-na says that all he needs to ask is if she likes him.

She says he’s making it too complicated and that her answers is yes, dropping to banmal herself to say simply that she likes him. He asks why, and she says it’s just because he’s himself. Suddenly she stops, frowning, and asks if he caused trouble again. He starts to say no, but then he decides that maybe he should cause some trouble. He tells Ji-na that if he gets into real trouble, he’ll tell her everything.

He visits security to get the CCTV footage from the archives. After several hours of watching the video, he sees something that makes him frown in confusion. He finds DH in his office and asks to talk, and for some reason DH mentions that the native Americans considered Columbus a viper.

Yeon-woo points out that Columbus didn’t actually discover America, but was saved by America when he was lost. Remembering that Kang-seok called DH a viper that eats its own mother, Yeon-woo asks if DH believes that he saved Kang-seok (when he discovered his mentor suppressing evidence), only for Kang-seok to drive him out.

DH says he’s half right — he did save Kang-seok, but he stepped down because of his own mistake. Yeon-woo says that if Kang-seok steps down, it will be because of his mistake, and DH says that now he knows why Kang-seok hired Yeon-woo. He wishes they’d met sooner, but Yeon-woo argues that it’s good they met now.

He says that you shouldn’t stop just because your horse is tired, and DH asks if he’s ready to change horses. Yeon-woo replies with a grin, “No, but I’m ready to ride a tiger.” DH warns that the tiger may bite his neck, but Yeon-woo just nods.

David Kim arrives at the firm to discuss an agreement. Kang-seok asks where he got the forged memo, and David reveals that it was sent to him anonymously. Ha-yeon tells David that the person responsible for destroying the memo was fired immediately, and that she called him here to come to an agreement she can accept.

David mentions his original deal: that Yuno Motors will pay Kang Ah-young five billion won in return for Kang-seok’s disbarment. He raises the offer to ten billion won, but Kang-seok says he’ll just take it to court. Ha-yeon snaps at them both to stop when their comments start to get personal, but David continues, smirking that after firing Da-ham didn’t work, Kang-seok is now hiding behind “mommy.”

He says that he sees Kang-seok’s true self despite his flashy exterior, aware that he grew up with no mother and a gambler for a father. Kang-seok punches him, but David gets right back in his face to snarl that this is the real Kang-seok, and ends the negotiations.

Having witnessed the punch, Yeon-woo speaks privately with Ha-yeon to say he understands why she wanted to settle, but that he also knows she doesn’t want to let Kang-seok go. He thinks she can give Kang-seok one last chance to prove in advance that he can win the case against the firm in court with a mock trial.

He says that if Kang-seok loses the mock trial, he’s likely to lose in court, so they’ll agree to settle on David’s terms. But if Kang-seok wins the mock trial, they have reason to trust that he’ll be found innocent. Ha-yeon worries that DH won’t accept this plan, but Yeon-woo argues that he’ll be motivated to see Kang-seok kicked out and her position questioned.

When she takes the idea to DH, Ha-yeon offers DH the chance to prove that the memo was real and that Kang-seok knew about it through the mock trial, and in the process prove that he himself wasn’t involved. She sweetens the deal by offering to resign as managing partner if Kang-seok loses the mock trial, and DH chuckles gleefully.

Ha-yeon does have one condition, which was Yeon-woo’s idea — that Yeon-woo plays the prosecutor. Ha-yeon doubted that DH would agree, so Yeon-woo promises to convince him. She takes the plan to Kang-seok, and they agree that they need to convince Da-ham to testify for this to work.

Meanwhile, Yeon-woo approaches DH about playing prosecutor in the mock trial. He vows to win and get Kang-seok kicked out with a testimony about Kang-seok destroying evidence. DH asks why he’d do it the hard way, so Yeon-woo says that he owes it to Kang-seok to give him a chance.

But he promises DH that he’ll win and prove that he’s worthy to be on his side by enacting his revenge so that nobody knows. DH agrees to the mock trial, but he tells Ha-yeon that he also has a condition: that the senior partners serve as the jury, and that Geun-shik plays prosecutor instead of Yeon-woo.

When everything is agreed upon, Yeon-woo tells Kang-seok, who asks what Yeon-woo’s game is. In answer, Yeon-woo hands Kang-seok a file and says they need to take a risk to discover who’s behind this. He asks if Kang-seok trusts him, but Kang-seok says he doesn’t — from this moment forward they’re a prosecutor and the accused.

Yeon-woo finds Geun-shik practicing his statements in the restroom. Geun-shik tells him to get lost, but Yeon-woo reminds him that they’re partners and assures him that he’s on DH’s side now.

DH admits to Ha-yeon that he agreed to the mock trial because he has nothing to lose either way. He tells her that she can keep her position even if Kang-seok loses, assuming that she wants Yeon-woo to be the prosecutor to assure herself a win. Instead of correcting him, she asks what happens if she wins, and DH says they’ll take the case to court.

Yeon-woo visits Da-ham, who says she won’t testify in the mock trial. He says he’s partly responsible because he gave her a chance to tell Kang-seok about the memo herself, and she asks why Kang-seok can ask this of her. Yeon-woo says that she made the mistake, but it’s Kang-seok who may be disbarred or even imprisoned.

Da-ham sighs that there’s nothing she can do and invites Yeon-woo to speak to her lawyer. Yeon-woo huffs incredulously, then says that if she’s already made a decision, then he’ll stop caring about her, too, but he warns that she’ll regret this for the rest of her life. She points out that he’s the one doing something he’ll regret, telling him to go back where he belongs.

Kang-seok and Ha-yeon discuss the fact that both of their futures depend on the results of the mock trial. Ha-yeon doesn’t tell Kang-seok that DH offered to let her keep her position — instead she tells Kang-seok that he had better win.

The mock trial begins, and Geun-shik starts by questioning Kang-seok. Kang-seok testifies that he considers himself honest, so Geun-shik asks him about a time when Geun-shik was Kang-seok’s associate, and Kang-seok hid a file from him. A flashback shows that Kang-seok was merely playing a prank, which he testifies to now.

Geun-shik asks if that makes it okay and if Kang-seok ever apologized, and Kang-seok says no to both questions. He denies that anything else like that ever happened, but Geun-shik states that there were many incidents. He says that Kang-seok has no conscience, and Ha-yeon finally objects that all of this is irrelevant.

But Geun-shik claims that it’s relevant because due to Kang-seok’s inability to admit fault, two people died and the accident survivor ended up killing himself. DH (who is acting as judge) calls an hour-long recess, and Geun-shik offers Kang-seok an insincere apology.

During the break, AK tells DH that Yeon-woo is lying about being a lawyer, and that she got this job because she threatened Kang-seok. She adds that she’s here to prove to DH that she wants to be on his side.

Meanwhile, Geun-shik brags about how awesome he was, thanking Yeon-woo for writing his script. Yeon-woo says it will be fine as long as Da-ham also follows the script. Geun-shik says that first, DH wants to make sure Yeon-woo is really with them, and sends him into DH’s office.

DH says that he heard Yeon-woo is the reason Kang-seok hired AK, and AK tells Yeon-woo that DH knows his secret. DH wants to know why Kang-seok chose Yeon-woo as his associate, and AK asks why he’s now betraying Kang-seok to side with them.

Ha-yeon paces in her office, concerned that the partners will turn their backs on her. Kang-seok asks if she’s worried about him, or her position, reminding her of who he is. He promises that he’ll disappear quietly if they lose and asks her to do her best.

Yeon-woo says that he knows why DH decided to make the mock trial into a jury vote — because out of thirty-eight senior partners, he and Ha-yeon each have the guaranteed loyalty of fifteen. That leaves eight uncertain votes, but since the case against the firm will look bad if it goes to court, DH is counting on those partners voting against it.

Those eight voters will also come to trust DH more, since he’s the one who doesn’t want this to go to court, tipping things in his favor. Yeon-woo says that Kang-seok hired him because he’s capable of quickly reading a room, and that’s also why he’s on DH’s side now — he trusts numbers, not humans, and DH is practically guaranteed to come out on top.

Yeon-woo leaves DH’s office, and DH also dismisses Geun-shik, leaving him alone with AK. He says the Kang-seok he knows wouldn’t let his opponent use his weakness as a threat, but would instead use the opponent’s weakness to make an agreement, concluding that AK must have a weakness.

When the mock trial resumes, Ha-yeon questions Kang-seok. He testifies that his first job for Ha-yeon was to fire people, and that he once told Ha-yeon that he resented her for it. She corrects that he actually said he wanted to spit in her face, and that for a year after that, he would only take public interest cases or threaten to resign, and he admits sheepishly that he was immature.

Ha-yeon addresses the audience, mentioning the toast truck outside the building every morning. She says that it used to be a shabby snack cart, but now it’s a nice food truck run by the former owner’s son. She reveals that Kang-seok actually owns that food truck, and Kang-seok looks uncomfortable.

Another flashback shows Kang-seok frequenting the old snack cart, but one day the cart was gone and the owner’s son was sitting dejectedly on the curb. Kang-seok had asked about his mother, and soon, instead of the old cart, a fancy new food truck was in its place.

Kang-seok had told the man that if anyone ever wanted to buy the truck, to have them call his lawyer. The man asked why (he bought him the new truck), in sign language. Kang-seok simply said, “Because it’s delicious.”

Ha-yeon says that Kang-seok is the same person now as he was when he said he wanted to spit in her face — a man with a kind heart, whether it’s towards a client or an opponent, though he doesn’t want people to know. She speculates that it’s because having a warm heart means you have a lot to protect.

Kang-seok breaks in to snap that it also means you have a lot of weaknesses, which you can’t afford if you want to last at Kang & Ham. Ha-yeon adds that it’s not luck that makes him a lawyer with a clean record. She says he’s always won and never created controversy, and Geun-shik asks when she’s going to make an actual argument. Ha-yeon says simply, “There is no argument.”

Later, DH sneers to Yeon-woo that Ha-yeon and Kang-seok are playing for the sympathy vote. Yeon-woo says he’ll have to attack Kang-seok’s weakness, and when the trial resumes, he looks ready to do just that. He calls Da-ham as a witness, and she enters the room to testify.

Yeon-woo asks her if Kang-seok ordered her to destroy the memo, or if she did it on her own after he told her not to, but after each question she simply says, “I refuse to testify.” Yeon-woo asks if she would do something illegal if Kang-seok asked her to, but she says he would never ask, so Yeon-woo asks if there’s a reason she’s not answering the actual question.

With a glance towards Kang-seok, Yeon-woo asks Da-ham if she’s in love with Kang-seok. Kang-seok looks very interested in her answer, and Ha-yeon objects that it’s irrelevant, but Yeon-woo says it’s relevant because if she loves him, she might do something wrong for her loved one.

Ha-yeon objects again, saying that how Da-ham feels doesn’t matter. But Yeon-woo says it also doesn’t matter whether Kang-seok has a kind heart or not. He asks again if she loves Kang-seok, and Da-ham remembers the times she’s acted on her own in Kang-seok’s best interest, like handing in her list of the times Deputy Chief Prosecutor Oh suppressed evidence.

Kang-seok orders Yeon-woo to stop, but he asks again, “Do you love him?!” Da-ham stammers tearfully, and when Yeon-woo pushes for an answer, Kang-seok bellows, “I’ll say I ordered her to do it, so stop!!” Da-ham gets up and runs from the room, and DH ends the mock trial.

Kang-seok follows Da-ham and catches up to her in the lobby, but he doesn’t call out to her. Instead he goes back to confront Yeon-woo, who says that he taught him that to turn a trial around, you have to shake someone up. Kang-seok barks that he destroyed Da-ham today, not him, but Yeon-woo just says that if Kang-seok wanted to protect her, he shouldn’t have let her get fired.

He adds that Kang-seok shouldn’t have weaknesses or enemies either, because Da-ham and Ha-yeon are doing all this to protect him. Kang-seok murmurs that Yeon-woo really means what he said, and Yeon-woo reminds him that he had to make his own choice.

He leaves, running into DH, who smiles with satisfaction and pride. They go to DH’s office, where Yeon-woo says that Ha-yeon’s statements made the jury see Kang-seok’s character in a different light, so they need to do something else to win the mock trial (and thus make Kang-seok resign). His suggestion is to convince CEO Seo from Yuno Motors settle the case, which would make it look like Kang-seok threatened him. DH agrees so Yeon-woo leaves to talk with CEO Seo, but Geun-shik looks unsettled.

Ji-na has been watching the mock trial, and she catches Yeon-woo before he leaves. Upset, she asks why he attacked Da-ham, and if he really plans to put an end to Da-ham and Kang-seok this way. She calls him cruel, and his eyes only betray the slightest flicker before he turns to walk away from her.

As he goes, he thinks to himself, “The best way to keep a secret is not telling it to anyone.”

 
COMMENTS

I wasn’t sure before, but now I’m 100% convinced that Kang-seok loves Da-ham. His mantra has always been to win at any cost, but he’s willing to throw everything away — his career, his good name, the respect of his peers — to save Da-ham. I didn’t think this was a show that could make me cry, but the moment when he offered to confess to stop Da-ham from crying got me right here.

I had a feeling the whole mock trial issue would come up again, after the show took such pains to have Yeon-woo fail spectacularly the first time. I’m confident that Yeon-woo is playing both sides and not truly trying to oust Kang-seok from the firm, but I’m worried about what his plan actually is. He’s in a good position to lose purposely, ensuring that the case goes to trial, which is what Kang-seok wants because it puts the burden on the opposition to show that he knowingly suppressed evidence (David Kim will be forced to prove that Kang-seok knew about the original memo, but since the original memo never existed, it will be impossible). But Yeon-woo seems to be torpedoing every good relationship he has in order to help Kang-seok, and I don’t really know why. Yes he respects Kang-seok, but their relationship isn’t exactly a good one, so why is Yeon-woo willing to sacrifice everything for him?

That being said, I’m confused as to why Kang-seok is still being held responsible for the destruction of the fake evidence after Da-ham’s dismissal. She was fired to show that the firm took her mistake very seriously, and doesn’t tolerate that kind of disregard for the law. And Kang-seok didn’t even know about the memo until after it was gone, so there’s no way anyone can say he’s as guilty as Da-ham, and yet they’re saying exactly that. Maybe it’s the same cultural opinion that says that family members can be held responsible when someone breaks the law, but I don’t really understand that opinion, either.

I’m also very confused by a lot that happened during the mock trial — to be fair, everything I know about the law comes from American television, but so much about the mock trial seemed very wrong to me. First of all, Geun-shik was obviously using his position as prosecutor to air his own personal grievances against Kang-seok, and at the very least, if he felt his experiences were relevant, Yeon-woo should have questioned Geun-shik as a witness. But he was allowed to stand up there and state negative personal opinions about Kang-seok, which rubbed me the wrong way. Second, why was DH allowed to be the judge? He’s much too biased against Kang-seok, so they should have found someone truly neutral. Also, Geun-shik claimed that Kang-seok’s unwillingness to admit fault caused two deaths, but that makes no sense… the man’s wife and son were already dead when the accident trial took place two years ago. It was CEO Seo’s cover-up of the faulty wheel that caused the deaths, before the trial. Even Ha-yeon was allowed to tell a story instead of questioning Kang-seok, and to make assumptions about his character, which I can’t imagine would be allowed in a true courtroom, mock or not.

That said, I’m glad we got to learn that Kang-seok does have weaknesses, and very humanitarian ones, at that. He’s shown a marked disregard for people’s circumstances in the past, even when doing his job means making their circumstances worse. I don’t really buy Ha-yeon’s assertion that he’s a big softie, but I can believe that Kang-seok compartmentalizes — puts his feelings away when he’s working so that his emotions don’t influence his actions. He knows that he has the ability to care too much, so he just shuts that side of himself down completely. It would explain why Yeon-woo has been described as “exactly like Kang-seok, but completely different,” and it’s true — they both care a lot about people, but Kang-seok is afraid to let himself feel those things while Yeon-woo lets his emotions guide him. But now Yeon-woo is learning to hide his real feelings in order to win, and Kang-seok is letting his emotions get in the way of his convictions, and I’m not sure it’s a good look on either of them.

 
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Idk bout you but Yeonwoo totally lost my heart in this one. Idk about his plan whatsoever but Yeonwoo putting Daham in that position AND humiliating her is definitely not the Yeonwoo I'm here for. Even if his intention was good, whatsoever. And tbh I was rooting for Jina to slap him or smth HAHA omg I'm sorry

Anyway, you guys omg I can't with how SOFT Kangseok is whenever he looked at Daham and turned all enraged wolf again when he looked at Yeonwoo asdfghklhag

But thank you lollypip for the recap! You are my hero!

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I realized that the only times I compare the two versions is when it comes to the scenes of Kang-Seok and Da-Ham (Harvey & Donna), maybe because I was a huge fan of the pair in the early seasons (the writers are screw us in the last few seasons).
I find the trial scene more intense in the original, maybe because they were more brutal with Donna questioned her past relationships and her relationships with Harvey.
To this day I still don't forget Louis shouting: "DO YOU LOVE HARVEY SPECTER?" and Donna choking in her own words and Harvey stands up defending her: "THAT'S ENOUGH."Honestly, that man js only that angry when it comes to Donna.
BUT I liked MORE the outcome of this trial on this version. Kang-Seok confessed to something he didn't do and risked everything he had for Da-Ham, that didn't happened in the original. Finally the drama showed us his truly feelings about her. I LOVED IT 😍😍

 If anyone wants to watch the original scene:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EmqVEbSz0Bg

And I was totally surprised and please that they made Yeon-Woo question and humiliate Da-Ham in this version. I just can't explain why, I just hope they don"t make him the savior all by himself, he look like he have a Plan.

P.S: People think that Kang-Seok told Dan-Ham to bury the evidence, so he will be questioned or even investigated, no one would believe that the secretariat would make a decision without the chief's consent.

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I think Yeon Woo raised that question to convince the jury (the outcome is through votes, not judged by the Director Ham) that Da-Ham made the decision herself to destroy the evidence in order to protect Kang-Seok due to her love for him. That's the only plausible reason to prove Kang-Seok did not order her to do that. Yeon Woo must've remembered what Kang-Seok said about not being able to protect anyone if he goes to jail when asked why he didn't protect Da Ham.
Somehow I get the feeling that Yeon Woo is setting himself up to be the sacrificial lamb in this. He's being a double agent and unable to share it with anyone.

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I understood why Yeon Woo asked the question, my PS was to the person who did the recap who didn't seem to understand why Kang-Seok is on trial.
It makes sense for people to suspect he's had his secretary bury the evidence since he's the boss and the lawyer.

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@LollyPip
I too am rather confused about Geun-sik's strategy and how it could possibly work? The minute he started referring to the pranks that KS played on him, I thought that no one would take him seriously. It made him look so petty. I mean if the pranks were played on someone else, maybe it could used adversely. But as it was about himself, and everyone must know that he has a grudge against KS, how can his own personal grievances be used in a trial, even if it was a mock one? I can't believe that the senior partners actually took that seriously.

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Thanks for the recap Lollypip. Been waiting for it to read what I've missed while watching.
I was wondering about the same thing you commented about the mock trial. Not sure if that's what happens in real life but maybe since it's an informal one just to get all partners to vote whether they agree to let Kang-seok take the case to court for real trial or not (which may have negative impact on the firm's image) the main objective is to convince them of whether his character is trustworthy/with integrity and hence would not resort to hiding/destroying case evidence?
When I listen to Ha Yeon sharing Kang-seok's story, it made me think that he used to be like Yeonwoo when he was young - full of ideals and wanting to protect the weak/vulnerable. That was what made him choose to mentor this young man who does not seem to have luck on his side. That evil David Kim mentioned about Kang-seok's dad being a gambler so I think Kang-seok had a hard life too and can empathise with Yeonwoo.

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At times like this episode, I can't help but compare with the original, the mock trial in the original was so impactful somehow, with Loius screaching "Do you love Harvey Specter" and Donna fumbling for an answer. However having said that I think the Korean version made it much more intense and if I may add romanticized it a little. It was so intense probably because Yeon Woo went all in during the confrontation and with Da Ham crying and Kang Seok going all "fine I'll just take the blame so leave her alone" had me in total awe of this episode. I belive they took a slightly turn by romanticing it because they don't have many seasons to convey the fact Kang Seok can really do anything for Da Ham as seen in original at various instances where Harvey did go to great lengths for Donna.
But I hope that we have a proper closure for this arc with just two eps remaining I don't know how will they wrap it up justifiably, unless they aim for a second season.

P. S- I really really wish Kang Seok and Da Ham's relationship get a concrete closure and not end it like a loomimg sword.!

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Like @lafrede and @cryptic, I also thought back to the original mock trial. I really miss Louis's competence—he was harsh towards Donna because he knew she'd be brutalized during the real trial. He did it out of (platonic) love and respect. Geun-sik is wasted in the Korean version.

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I agree, Geun-sik does not have any essence of what makes Louis such a great character. It's such a shame, really. I think his k-version is the only one I'm not satisfied with at all.

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Alas, I was so excited at the beginning too, with Geun-sik's absurd poetry whispered into that dictaphone.

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Yeon-woo is truely causing some trouble because there is no way the lead of a drama is going over to the bad side when there are barely any episodes left. I feel like he is setting himself up to be sacrificed - remember the scene the drama started with. Words said by Ji-na on that bridge thing does give Yeon-woo ideas.
I was sitting on the edge of my seat when Yeon-woo was cornering Da-ham.
Kang-seok's story about how he helped the guy from the snack cart proves that he has a totally kind heart.
When Kang-seok was ready to take up all the blame and throw his everything away for Da-ham, it also got me. And also reminded me of when Yeon-woo lost the mock trial to stop hurting Ji-na.

I hope everything goes well for Yeon-woo.

But I have a few questions though -
1. Why did Kang-seok choose Yeon woo?
2. Who wrote the two fake memos ?
3. What was the secret thing that Kang-seok and Da-ham do; shown a few episodes ago?

This is the first time in this drama that I can't wait for the next episode.

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I'm pretty sure David wrote the fake memos, but who planted the fake receipt in the archive room? They had to have access to Daham's stamp also. I'm guessing Chae byun, although that might be too obvious. Maybe attorney Kim?

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Well, at least we've answered one of Yeon-woo's questions: Why does Kang-seok get freebies at the food truck?

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Thank you for another of your great recaps, LollyPip. I had a hard time following this episode because the logic seems to have flown out the window.

The biggest elephant in the room is Director Ham's very presence back at the firm. If he really did embezzle from a client, why was he not disbarred and jailed? I get the impression that he was let off with a slap on the wrist. Did I miss something? The fact that he admitted his embezzlement and adultery to the Kang & Ham partners and staff -- seemingly without repercussions -- continues to mystify me. For all the huffing and puffing about not bringing shame on the firm, that's exactly what he did. I still cannot imagine why the client he plundered hasn't prosecuted him in a criminal suit. Or maybe I can... The viper probably has some juicy data on his “piggy bank” that is perfect for blackmail purposes.

I’m also very confused by a lot that happened during the mock trial — to be fair, everything I know about the law comes from American television, but so much about the mock trial seemed very wrong to me.

Thank you for that reality check. Everything you mentioned has been bothering me, too. Director Ham presiding is bad enough. But having Geun-sik prosecuting looks like a fiasco. Perhaps Yeon-woo were counting on it, in which case Lord Goldfish's airing of private beefs was another nail in the coffin of his credibility as a potential senior partner, let alone a witness.

I'm wondering if Yeon-woo were also counting on former Prosecutor Kim to spill the beans to Director Ham. Now that Ham knows the truth about the associate, shouldn't it be his duty to reveal the crime of practicing law without a license? But Ham continues to cover it up so he can use Yeon-woo to his own advantage against Kang-seok. Is this part of Yeon-woo's strategy to exonerate his mentor? But won't that implicate Ha-yeon as well? I thought she is aware of Yeon-woo's secret. Or maybe I lost the pointer, and it's only Kang-seok, Da-ham, Prosecutor Kim, and now Director Ham who are privy to that little bombshell.

In this show, the devil is in the details, and I'm having a hard time keeping up.

My understanding at the end of the episode is that Yeon-woo has never intentionally directly told Ji-na that he is practicing law without a license. By withholding the truth from her, she has plausible deniability. Unless she has already gone behind his back and done some research of her own -- which is totally within her capability...

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Beware Rampant Speculation

It occurs to me that former Prosecutor Kim should also be disbarred for failure to prosecute Yeon-woo for practicing law without a license. That's two of Kang-seok's enemies potentially disbarred. I wonder what Yeon-woo will do to ensure a triple play that permanently neutralizes David Kim, too.
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It looks to me as if Yeon-woo is planning a sacrifice play, with the intention of turning himself in. I expect that such a move is inconceivable to Ham and the two Kims -- and just about everyone else at the firm. Except for Kang-seok... and Ji-na once she has had time to reflect on what is really happening.

We still have yet to see what Yeon-woo saw in the security footage of the archive. I will be shocked out of my shoes if it turns out to be David Kim. I can't imagine him doing his own dirty work. At the very least, the archive should be secured. Unless someone [Lord Goldfish?] lent him their ID badge (at the behest of Director Ham?). Dun-dun-dun.

Too Good To Be True Fantasy a la ALLY MCBEAL: Yeon-woo took the bar exam in David Kim's name. I know, I know. The age difference is too great for that to be possible. But I can dream, can't I?! ;-)

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I wonder if Kang Seok still has that recording of David Kim. He should have been disbarred and put in jail for what he did in his last case.
Really, I think Kang Seok probably has something on all of them if he wanted to take them all down with him.

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@kdmama5 j9,

Thanks for the reminder of that illegally-obtained recording of David Kim... Do I smell Mutually Assured Destruction on the breeze?

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The biggest elephant in the room is Director Ham's very presence back at the firm. If he really did embezzle from a client, why was he not disbarred and jailed?

Because HaYeon found that out first (along with KangSeok) and decided to cover it up to protect Kang and Ham's reputation and keep its clients. What do you think the firm's clients would have done the moment they found out that the firm representing them had a director who's embezzling money, possible theirs, and therefore possibly getting all its files searched, files which will definitely contain confidential information about them?
They'll all run away.

So HaYeon and KangSeok just threatened him out without reporting his misdeeds to the prosecutors and so no one in the industry even knew of this for a long long time. If no one knows, he can't be in jail. When Director Ham came back, KangSeok was using knowledge of the embezzlement and his daughter to threaten him to stay away. But apparently only his wife matters to this snake, cos he took KangSeok's threat by the horns and overturned it, telling the company of his misdeeds himself leaving KangSeok with no leverage over him. Will the senior partners turn him into the police when they've had histories with him, I don't know. K and H's clients may still run away.

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And the hypocrite can now "righteously" talk about not bringing shame to the company because apparently "he's a changed man". That is his excuse...

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@peeps,

Please excuse me while I upchuck.

But despite his pious confession, Ham is still an embezzler. And now he's made everyone in the room complicit in his crimes after the fact. I feel slimy just thinking about it.

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@peeps,

Thanks for connecting the dots for me. Right. Now I get it.

So why don't the partners who know of Ham's egregious malfeasance all bail out (and maybe even start their own firm)? If nearly half the senior partners leave en masse, wouldn't that say something, even if they all were gagged and could not disclose their real reasons for leaving? -- I realize that they would probably have to leave their clients behind. But those clients would be free to follow them, I imagine.

The thing that bothers me about Ha-yeon's actions to protect the firm is that she enabled Ham to get away with figurative murder. Eventually the bill will come due, so she has only postponed the day of reckoning. Because she covered up Ham's crimes, she stands to be disbarred as well.

The way things are playing out, no one at Kang & Ham is looking all that honorable and upstanding right now. But you could probably say that about all the other law firms, too.

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But those clients would be free to follow them, I imagine.

No, with big law firms, they have non-contestability clauses in their employment contracts meaning that if you walk from the firm, you can't approach the firm's clients for at least a year. And most clients choose to stay anyway, since changing firms can be lots of hassle.

Hmm, I don't think HaYeon stands to be disbarred because not reporting someone else's embezzlement (esp when it's not tax payers') isn't illegal. It's morally and ethically wrong but it's not illegal.

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@peeps,

Thanks for explaining how the business side of the legal profession works. ;-)

I suspected there might be no-compete clauses. For all intents and purposes, whoever leaves Kang & Ham will be up a creek for at least a year.

So much for lawyers policing their own profession...

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😂 What "non-contestability clause"?! You're right, it's non-compete.

I've been reading too many insurance contracts. 🤦

Well, lawyers have to watch their backs too anyway.

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For me, these last two episodes have been the most interesting episodes in this drama so far.

Thank you LolliPip for all your hard work in recapping all of these dramas!

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Three people can keep a secret when two of them are dead. >:) I wanted to yell at KS, "Keep going after her, man!" when he stopped running after DH in the lobby and just watched her keep walking. He could have caught up with her! AUGH!

I was 98% sure YW was playing both sides before the end, and the last line kicked it to 100%.

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