The Fiery Priest: Episodes 13-14
After several episodes of not much happening, our hot-headed priest finally comes up with a plan to snare his enemies and restore his mentor’s good name. As a bonus, the plan involves righting a wrong that his mentor was trying to fix when he died, bringing the whole thing full circle. It even looks like he may get an ally, as a former enemy reaches a point where they can no longer look away from the evil happening around them.
Hae-il and Chul-beom agree to go ahead and duke this out, while Dae-young whines at them. They parry back and forth for a minute before almost simultaneously landing punches on each other’s jaws, and they take a moment to size each other up again before going back in.
Dae-young calls a halt, hearing voices nearby. Chul-beom asks when they can have a rematch, and Hae-il quips, “Whenever you want to die,” heh.
As they leave, Dae-young tells Hae-il that he seems like a natural fighter, but that Chul-beom used to be a boxer and never lost a fight. Hae-il suddenly goes back into the Daegakgyo building where Young-moon is faith-healing a woman’s cellulite (eyeroll), and he calls Daegakgyo a cult to Young-moon’s face.
Young-moon calls him rude, but Hae-il says he doesn’t need manners in from of someone who’s on the same level as Satan. He warns Young-moon not to even think about managing the welfare facilities, or talk about his cult to the orphans, or he won’t handle this with words next time. They leave Young-moon vowing to change them through enlightenment.
Dae-young has a little passive-aggressive hissy fit, snapping that he won’t interfere anymore and will just be Hae-il’s guide around town. He sulks that he’s not sulking, and he says he was only making a fuss to keep Hae-il from getting hurt, pouting that Hae-il never listens to him.
Kyung-seon and Seung-ah are locked in a stand-off, Seung-ah refusing to reveal her source that told her where to find the witnesses, and Kyung-seon refusing to let her leave until she talks. Kyung-seon warns that Seung-ah will be in big trouble if she doesn’t name her source soon, but Seung-ah will only say that it’s someone she’s known for a long time. Kyung-seon’s coworker sees something on Seung-ah’s phone, so Kyung-seon tells her to go.
At the station, Seung-ah tells Dae-young (in a rap — that never gets old, hee) that she didn’t give up her informant. But she’s cagey with him about it, too, so he tells her that he can’t help her if she hides things from him, but she says in a condescending voice that he definitely shouldn’t help her.
Kyung-seon’s coworker learned from Seung-ah’s phone that Hae-il was the one who sent Seung-ah the witnesses’ location. Kyung-seon wonders how he managed to track them down, but she surprises her colleagues by telling them to keep this quiet, because she wants to catch Hae-il and his hacker at the same time. She says that the hacker must have some pretty amazing information like embarrassing videos of politicians — that they can suppress so they don’t get in trouble, ha.
Sung-kyu and Sister Kim are waiting anxiously when Hae-il returns to the church. He confirms that yes, Daegakgyo is definitely a cult, and that Young-moon is even working with Chul-beom. They think that Young-moon is trying to take over the welfare facilities in order to get more believers, and Hae-il’s eyes nearly roll right out of his head.
Chul-beom ices his bruised face while Jang-ryong pours drinks, and when Ssongsak walks into the restaurant with a delivery, he tries to avoid catching Jang-ryong’s attention. But Jang-ryong follows him out to his scooter to bully him with a tongue twister again, and he’s so shocked when Ssongsak manages to say it perfectly that he lets Ssongsak drive away.
To explain the situation clearly, Hae-il draws a diagram for Sung-kyu and Sister Kim. He shows them that Chul-beom and Young-moon are building a foundation with the backing of several corrupt city leaders, and that managing the welfare facilities is a way to launder their dirty money. HA, Sister Kim is so frustrated that she actually curses.
Dong-ja has dinner with Chief Prosecutor Kang about all the recent problems they’re having with their plans. They decide they need someone who can handle these issues legally, since Chul-beom’s methods often make things worse.
Enter Kyung-seon, right on cue. She tells Chief Prosecutor Kang that she found Seung-ah’s informant, a hacker, and she promises to arrest him. Chief Prosecutor Kang dismisses her, and Dong-ja says that she’s impressed by Kyung-seon’s work and wants to bring her in as their cleaner. Chief Prosecutor Kang agrees, but he says that Kyung-seon needs to be tamed a little first.
When she stops by the convenience store, Kyung-seon is impressed that Yo-han is reading a book on astrophysics. He says it was his college major, so she asks why he’s working here. He says that people are like stars, so he’s still studying stars while ringing people up.
Kyung-seon asks what kind of star she is, and Yo-han tells her she’s Antares, which is seven hundred times bigger than the sun. He means she’s passionate, but she deadpans, “So you’re saying I have a temper.” LOL.
Hae-il comes in and she can’t help prodding him about his witnesses getting stolen. Hae-il tells her she should be ashamed for what happened, but she just needles him that he’s all talk and no action. She asks what he’ll do if the pope asks what he’s been doing, calls him an “SL,” and leaves, and Yo-han has to explain that SL stands for Suffocating Loser.
Back at the church, Hae-il stays up late studying the articles he found in Father Lee’s room. There are clips about all of the Fearsome Foursome, Chul-beom, and even Young-moon of Daegakgyo, which Hae-il uses to make a chart on his wall laying out their connections. He prays to God, asking to be allowed to just catch one of them.
Dae-young gets sloppy drunk at the restaurant where Ssongsak works, and that night, he dreams about a fiery Hell. But a demonic Hae-il tells him that Hell is really living this same life over and over again, as scenes from Dae-young’s clearly miserable life flash in front of his eyes. He thinks he wakes up, but Hae-il is in bed with him, still laughing an evil devil’s cackle.
Hae-il prays in the chapel, and as he’s walking up the aisle to leave, he jumps ten feet when he spots Dae-young napping in a pew. He tells Dae-young that church isn’t a vacation destination for nonbelievers, and Dae-young grumbles that Hae-il yells no matter what he does.
When Sung-kyu calls Hae-il for breakfast, Dae-young gives him the hungry-puppy eyes and earns an invitation to eat with them. Hae-il screams when Dae-young snags the last of the fried egg and sausage, HA.
Kyung-seon arrives at work to learn that she’s been reassigned to another district, starting tomorrow. She protests to Chief Prosecutor Kang, saying that she only made that one mistake with the meth case, but he tells her that the order came from the director so there’s nothing he could do.
In retaliation for his breakfast thievery, Hae-il makes Dae-young buy him an expensive coffee before they start investigating. Dae-young notices that Hae-il doesn’t seem to know what to do next, but Hae-il says he has a plan.
At his boxing gym, Chul-beom goes a little nuts on his sparring partner, imagining him as Hae-il. He remembers Jang-ryong saying that only a trained assassin could beat him in a fight. He wonders… but no, that’s impossible. Still, he tells Jang-ryong to have one of the investigators in their pocket do a thorough background check on Hae-il.
Hae-il also asks Dae-young for a briefing on Chul-beom and the Fearsome Foursome (and burns his butt on a radiator, lol). Dae-young balks at the idea of discussing his superiors, so Hae-il offers him one meal a day at the church for a solid month in exchange.
He starts with Dong-ja, whose charisma and political prowess catapulted her quickly through the ranks of the borough office, and who knows everything that happens in Gudam. Seung-ah joins them and admits that she was eavesdropping and recording them, ha. Hae-il asks what Dong-ja’s relationship is with Chul-beom, and Seung-ah pipes up that they’ve claimed publicly to be step-siblings.
Continuing, Dae-young tells them that Chul-beom is an orphan who joined a gang at age twenty, then came to Gudam seven years ago and established his business, Daebum Trading company, three years ago. Hae-il guesses that he must be a smuggler who steals from Gudam businesses and uses the Russian mobsters to do his dirty work.
Next is Chief Nam, who comes from a long line of police officers that goes all the way back to the Japanese occupation (Hae-il: “That just means his family is pro-Japanese!”). Representative Park is a congressman on his third term, and is known for leading strikes — and cheating during protest-fasts. He has a long record of accepting bribes, sexual harassment, physical violence, and fraud, but all the charges were dropped.
On her way out of her office, Kyung-seon’s rival, Prosecutor Nam, stops to sneer that she should have been better at her work. He tells her that he’s wrapped up the meth case, and says condescendingly for her to be on her best behavior. Pushed to her limit, Kyung-seon chases him out of the building brandishing her nameplate.
Hae-il receives the official paperwork turning the welfare facilities over to Daegakgyo in one month, but he’s not willing to give up so easily and says they have a month to come up with a solution. Unfortunately, they learn that Eun-ji, the sick girl who ate the tainted food, is being discharged from the hospital.
The nun from the orphanage tells them that on the first day serving food from a new company, several of the children got sick, but Eun-ji didn’t recover due to her weak immune system. She’s been in a coma ever since, and the church can’t afford the treatment she needs.
Hae-il has seen articles and notes in Father Lee’s book about Eun-ji and the spoiled food, and he correctly assumes that the food service company avoided taking responsibility. Dae-young learns that the company is Wangmat Foods, and he says a little too casually that they make good food. But when the whole room just glares at him, he caves and admits that the Wangmat Foods president is Young-moon of Daegakgyo’s nephew.
They visit little Eun-ji in the hospital, where the doctor tells them that even a simple cold could kill her, but that the medicine she needs is very expensive. Hae-il offers to personally pay for anything she needs, so long as she doesn’t feel any pain. Later, Hae-il tells Dae-young that no matter what, he’ll destroy the people who did this to a child.
He heads to the borough office to ask why the didn’t accept Father Lee’s petition against Wangmat Foods. The official he speaks to says dismissively that the little girl isn’t even dead, and even Dae-young gets a look on his face like Oh no he di-int! just before Hae-il tries to rip the guy’s head off.
Hae-il notices a plaque on the wall showing Wangmat Foods receiving an award for outstanding food service, and he smashes the plaque to pieces and stomps on it for good measure. On his way out of the building, he notices several instances of the number one (a guy holding up a finger, a sign, a number on a shirt), and he takes it as a sign from God that he’ll be allowed to catch just one of the bad guys.
He tells Dae-young he’s had a revelation — they need to take down Wangmat Foods. Dae-young asks about Father Lee’s case, so Hae-il explains that the Wangmat Foods president’s uncle is Young-moon, who’s linked to Chul-beom, who’s connected to Dong-ja and Representative Park. He says that he only needs to catch one of them, and he’ll be catching all of them.
They find the president of Wangmat Foods physically and verbally abusing his employees in a filthy kitchen, forbidding them to throw anything away for any reason. He goes to take a drag on his cigarette, but Hae-il orders him to put it out, and even Dae-young looks disgusted.
The president greets Dae-young then goes to take another drag, so Hae-il tosses a bowl of soup in his face. The president tries to hit Hae-il with a ladle, and Hae-il doesn’t even strain himself holding the guy’s arms motionless.
The president calls for Choco, an immense man in a chef coat who stomps over to face off with Hae-il. Hae-il barely even seems concerned, and seconds later, Choco is flung unconscious into the alley behind the building. Hae-il shrugs at Dae-young like, “No biggie.”
They make the president hold one of the huge saute pots while clutching a gigantic rice cake between his teeth. Hae-il gives him two days to compensate the orphanage and leaves him whimpering in fear. As they’re leaving, Yo-han runs up to them (he started a part-time job there yesterday) to ask why they’re there, so they tell him.
The baddies have been preparing for their monthly “Savings Day,” which is happening tonight at Daebum Trading. They line up in front of a huge vault door and simultaneously press their thumbs to the lock pads. The vault door opens, and they go inside to appreciate the massive stack of money in the middle of the room.
Jang-ryong wheels in a smaller stack of bills, as the caption tells us that there’s about a hundred and fifty million dollars worth of cash. Jang-ryong trips while adding the new money to the old, and as he scrambles to pick up the stacks of bills, Chul-beom gets a phone call.
He leaves to meet with the Wangmat Foods president and Young-moon, who explain what happened with Hae-il. Young-moon senses that Hae-il has an “unspeakable” past, and Chul-beom is all, You’re a cult leader, you’d know all about unspeakable pasts. He tells them that if anything happens to Wangmat Foods, they’ll all be destroyed.
Kozayev offers to take care of the priest for them, but Chul-beom tells him to settle down, and he warns Young-moon and his nephew that the Vatican supports Hae-il. Young-moon says he’ll take care of the priest, because problems caused by believers should be solved by other believers.
Awww, Sister Kim serves a mountain of fried eggs for Hae-il at lunch the next day. Hae-il actually seems disappointed that Dae-young is too busy to eat with them, but he complains that they’re feeding Dae-young good food even though he keeps stopping them from getting to the bottom of Father Lee’s case. Sister Kim says that if Father Lee were still alive, that’s what he would have done regardless of Dae-young’s actions, making them all emotional.
Dae-young shows up after lunch and learns that Hae-il went to the orphanage without him. He gets a bad feeling and runs to the orphanage, where Young-moon and his assistant are teaching the children songs about following Young-moon as their leader.
Hae-il has gotten there first, and the kids immediately start tattling on Young-moon. Young-moon tells Hae-il to calm down and pats his shoulder, and Hae-il glares at him like he’s trying to kill him with his brain. Young-moon says that they have to abide by the borough office’s decision, but Hae-il just advances on him menacingly, growling that he warned Young-moon to stay away from the children.
Backing away, Young-moon stammers that Hae-il’s God isn’t the only god, and that in his opinion, it’s Hae-il who belongs to a cult. He offends Hae-il by calling out to God and saying he doesn’t exist when he doesn’t answer, and he vows to make the children members of Daegakgyo.
Hae-il picks up a baseball bat from a pile of toys, and Young-moon sees an opportunity. He bumps the handle and hits himself in the head with the bat, then falls to the floor screaming that Hae-il is Satan. Hae-il winds up to take an actual swing at Young-moon, but Dae-young hurdles across the room to stop him and gets whacked in the face on Hae-il’s backswing.
He stands stock-still, turns to look at Hae-il, and calmly asks why he’s causing trouble again. Hae-il drops the bat and asks if Dae-young is okay, and Dae-young says he’s perfectly fine. He sees a specter and asks who the man in the gat is, then topples forward to land, unconscious, on Young-moon.
I’m grateful for the briefing that Hae-il got on all the “bad birds” (as Sister Kim calls them), because a lot of the situations and relationships make a lot more sense now. It would have been nice if we’ve gotten this information several weeks ago, but better late than never. At least now I understand a bit more about who does what, and what their plan is for taking over the welfare services — it’s a convenient way to launder their money. And hoo boy, do they have a lot of money! That giant stack in the vault is quite impressive, but something tells me that one of more of the Fearsome Foursome is going to get greedy and try to take it all for themselves. My money (ha!) is on Chief Prosecutor Kang, if we’re taking bets.
I knew that Dae-young must have something that could push him too far, and it looks like the sick child might be it. The way he looked at Hae-il when he offered to pay for the girl’s medical treatment, I hope, means that he’s starting to see Hae-il as more than just a priest with a temper, but as someone who is willing to stand up for the weak and defenseless and never stop until he gets them justice. Dae-young does seem to be getting in Hae-il’s way less and even helped him a few times, so I hope this is the start of him waking up to what’s going on and realizing that something needs to be done. In the meantime, he’s turning out to be pretty useful with his knowledge of the bad guys and their connections.
I feel like Hae-il was getting a little bit distracted from solving Father Lee’s murder, and it’s funny that the show even hung a lantern on it, saying that he seemed like he wasn’t sure what to do next. But I’m okay with Hae-il hitting a wall in Father Lee’s case and deciding to champion one of Father Lee’s causes in the meantime, and what more noble cause is there than taking down the company that’s almost killed a little orphan girl? Obviously Wangmat Foods is in Dong-ja’s pocket, or vice-versa, so I’m sure that while he’s going after the crooked food service company, Hae-il will discover more clues that could lead him to the truth about Father Lee’s death. It’s a solid plan — if only Chul-beom weren’t already onto him, and plotting ways to keep him from following through. I wonder what Chul-beom’s reaction will be when he discovers Hae-il’s background… will he use it against him, or is it possible that Chul-beom might develop a little respect for the agent-turned-priest?
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