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Stills of Ji Jin-hee’s friends and (maybe) foe in Designated Survivor

The more I hear about tvN’s Designated Survivor: 60 Days, the more excited I get, especially because of the impressive cast the show has lined up, with interesting characters to populate this what-if nightmare scenario. The show is only about two weeks out from its premiere, so the promo wheel is busy cranking out material, this time with stills of three key players in the political thriller, played by the ever-wonderful Heo Jun-ho (Kingdom), Kang Hanna (Familiar Wife), and Lee Jun-hyuk (Are You Human Too).

Designated Survivor, which is a remake of an American show with the same name, will follow Ji Jin-hee (Misty), who finds himself in the Blue House following a terrorist attack on the National Assembly that kills the president as well as everyone before him in the line of succession. As the former, rather low-rung Minister of Environment, Ji Jin-hee’s character will have to navigate his way as a fledgling and unexpected president, lead a nation reeling from a traumatic terror attack, all while trying to find the culprits behind the bombings. All in a day’s work, right?

Heo Jun-ho sounds like he’ll be playing a stalwart and much-needed guide to the newbie president. As Chief of Staff to the assassinated former President, his character will provide some stability and continuity in the Blue House as he takes Ji Jin-hee’s character under his wing. Lee Jun-hyuk, pictured in his Navy uniform, will be playing a politician without any party affiliations. He has a confident, engaging presence, and coupled with his attractive demeanor, he’s a favorite amongst the voters and the media, who view him as bringing a breath of fresh air into the halls of the National Assembly. Of course, that’s not all there is to him, and he’s described as having a moral compass that straddles the “line where good and evil meet.” I love those kinds of characters the best, since you can’t predict what they’ll do next.

Kang Hanna will play a character that has a little less to do with the Blue House or the National Assembly, normally. She’s an agent with the Counter-terrorism unit at the National Intelligence Service (Korea’s version of the CIA) who will be investigating the terrorists behind the attacks that killed the former president. She definitely values actions over words, which should put her at interesting odds with the slew of politicians in the cast, and she takes great pride in her job and serving her nation. I love me a badass woman, especially since it sounds like she’ll be the most competent fighter in the show, and I can’t wait to see her kick butt as she saves the knights-in-distress.

Designated Survivor: 60 Days will air on Mondays and Tuesdays, and will premiere on July 1.

Via Newsen, Ilgan Sports, Sports Chosun

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Heo Jun-ho is such a wonderful actor that he certainly will be convincing in the role as the stalwart to the newbie president, but also much to his credit as an actor, I will wonder if he keeps a dog dungeon beneath the Blue House.

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In fact, I'll be disappointed if he hasn't. Or at least be partially responsible for the terrorist attack that killed the previous president so that he can get his Puppet President in charge

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And I'm sure after all is done, he will make a fortune by writing a best selling tell-all book!

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I always see Hae Mosu (JUMONG) first when it comes to Heo Jun-ho lol. Good actor!

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Security! Check for hammers!

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🚫🔨🚫🔨🚫🔨🚫🔨🚫🔨🚫

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What a cast!

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And Kang Hanna is playing Maggie Q's character, whose name on the original version is....Hannah Wells.

This on the nose stuff really is the best sometimes.

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I see what they did there 😏😏😏😏

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I really love and respect Lee Jun-hyuk as an actor. He chooses roles which are interesting and varied. At times he completely disappears into the role that I have trouble recognizing him. It took me a while to realize that Dr. Ye is Prosecutor Seo Dong Jae! 😬

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That's exactly what I thought to! I remember the weaselly Prosecutor in FOS and then wham! He's the socially awkward and stiff Dr Ye in APAD.

Anyway, he already got me way back in City Hunter.

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Anyway, he already got me way back in City Hunter.
Replace the Hunter with Hall and you will be speaking from my heart. He first got me in City Hall. I kept thinking about him until I saw him in City Hunter, and fell for him hook, line, and sinker. I will always have a soft spot for him.

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This drama was not on my radar but if Lee Joon-hyuk is in the cast well now it is. I love this guy. However, in APAD I was not on the Ye line. I was with Min-ho.
He was brilliant as Prosecutor Seo Dong-Jae in FOREST OF SECRETS. He personified straddling “the line where good and evil meet”.
Remember what he did with his salary from (not really) NAKED FIREMAN? He donated it to a firefighter’s charity.

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wow i legit enjoy everyone in this cast. i really like ji jin hee's acting style and presence too. and kang hanna has always had an aura that i liked, hopefully she's a lot more dynamic than in JBL (her character was just sad like everyone else. not bad or good just incredibly lonely. it's a very melancholy drama even though it's happy) i love espionage n thrillers >:)

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So Lee Jun-hyuk is playing a Hot Weasel? In uniform?!

Also, yiiikes, good luck to Kang Hanna's character and the headaches she'll get working with politicos...

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@mary,
I can confirm a Hot Weasel sighting in ep. 5. ;-)

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Everything seems perfect for this drama! Am waiting!

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I just read somewhere that it’s getting picked up by Netflix

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It may be my imagination but it seems to me that tvN and Netflix have some kind of arrangement like JTBC and Viki have. I think it is good.

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Netflix has agreements with jTBC and CJ E&M (which runs TvN), so it makes sense

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Oh so excited, Heo Jun Ho!!!

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Until he collapsed, I was not 100% sure that Heo Jun-ho was not behind the explosion plot. His expressions are so deliberately hard to read, I could imagine him being the power behind the throne not just in the Blue House but in Joseon.

Can't wait to find out whether the guy who swiped the phone is her fiance (who survived) or someone covering his tracks. I have the feeling she's going to be 1 step behind him until about ep. 8.

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@saya, @festerfaster, I was glad you mentioned the shoes. I can't wait to see what happens with the comfy shoes vs the dress shoes. They gave him the nickname Cinderella, but I think Mr. Rogers would be a better fit. And it would also cover the change from comfy sweatshirt to suit jacket.

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I feel like the first 10 mins of ep 3 are full of statements waiting to be challenged: "He's not suitable for politics" "Have you ever seen anyone give up power willingly?" "We can go home after 60 days...."

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Wait, is that the end for Secretary Han? Is he really going to disappear after ep. 3? Or will he be back at the Blue House in some other role before ep. 4 is over?

On the other hand, jumping into the story at ep. 3, is there any doubt that that's the missing fiance who just got pulled from the rubble?

I sure hope a real terrorist investigation would have more to work on than one man who managed to kill himself trying to get away. Obviously he couldn't have pulled off the whole cabling scheme himself.

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OK, no, I see where Secretary Han's future lies. With Mr. Reluctant Hero, the guy who was tipped off before the blast and survived.

Lee Joon-hyuk is so good at morally compromised characters.

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Four episodes in, I'm not sure I'm going to last much longer in this cynical world. It's awfully bleak.

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@pakalana pikake, they sure are teasing us with Oh Young-seok. He's a national miracle. He's a person who knew when to leave the room. He's a war hero dedicated to his troops. And now we have to think he was tied to the bombing after all? It makes me wonder if the title of the show has a double meaning. President Park was the designated survivor to assume the presidency. But Oh Young-seok could have been designated as the one to survive the bombing.

Glad President Park had the guts to fire General Lee, before the military took charge. The first task of the president is not just security, but preserving the democracy.

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Do you think that OYS was so embittered after being abandoned in the battle seven years ago (was this a real historical battle, btw, or one imagined for this show?) -- was he so embittered that he decided to destroy the government as a necessary sacrifice to achieving a better world? Or is he being set up as a fall guy for others who did? That's why I love the name "Weasel Oppa" so much, because he seems so heroic and noble, but he could be so twisted inside.....

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@lindag latebloomer,

Yes, I think it refers to a real incident in 2010 off of ROK's Baengnyeong Island, situated 10 miles off the coast of DPRK in the Yellow Sea -- the sinking of ROKS Cheonan with a crew of 104. 46 hands died. Or it could be a fictional event patterned after it. I recognized the name of the island.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ROKS_Cheonan_sinking

https://www.bbc.com/news/10129703

I think that Assemblyman Oh used the word "abandoned," which makes me think that it might actually be a fictional event in which North Korea sank the ship and took the crew prisoner -- something akin to the boarding and hijacking of the survey and spy ship USS Pueblo by North Korean vessels and MIG fighter jets in 1968 -- the same day the Blue House was attacked by North Korean infiltrators. One hand was killed, several seriously injured, and 9 incapacitated. The 82 survivors were imprisoned and tortured for 11 months.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Pueblo_(AGER-2)

http://www.usspueblo.org/index.html

At this point, I'm not sure what to make of Assemblyman Oh. After Baek Yi-hyun went all nihilist in NOKDU FLOWER, I don't think I can withstand more of same. Have mercy! -- That said, I find him an interesting character who is hard to read.

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Thank you for the background.

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@lindag,
You're most welcome. ;-)

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@pakalanapikake - I put a space in your name in comment above, so it didn't ping you.

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Oh, thanks for sending another smoke signal, @lindag latebloomer.

I mis-tagged you recently as @latebloomer -- Yee haw! I found it! It's in the Weasel Oppa discussion. ;-)
http://www.dramabeans.com/2019/07/team-dramabeans-what-were-watching-164/#comment-3491120

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@lindag latebloomer,

I'm so glad you tagged me. Thanks! Sorry for the delay. I didn't actually get to watch the latest episodes until late Sunday night / early this morning. (Three finales this week. Sheesh!)

Mr. P inferred from the American version that at least one person is excluded from meetings specifically so that there would be a survivor, in the event that the unthinkable happens. I doubt that President Yang knew that the National Assembly was going to be bombed and therefore decided to fire the Minister of the Environment so he could survive. It would be a kick in the head if that's exactly what happened after all.

At first blush, it looks more likely that Assemblyman Oh was someone's designated survivor. -- Or is he perhaps being framed? At this point, I'm extremely suspicious of Opposition Leader Yoon. Isn't it just a little too convenient that she and her party chose that particular day to boycott President Yang's state of the nation speech? What is even more damning is her having the updated floor plan of the National Assembly Building showing the bomb shelter in her possession. Or is that perhaps fake evidence? I truly do not know what to believe.

Watching Prez Park take the bit in his teeth, screw his courage to the sticking place, and pull a Harry Truman on General Lee was great. It was like General George Patton getting canned for agitating to invade Russia after the end of WWII.

I was ready to throw things when NIS Agent Han showed up on Assemblyman Oh's doorstep with the photos and proceeded to accuse him of criminal behavior. She had suppressed evidence (her fiance's phone found in the rubble), and it rankles. She heard the next station announcement on the subway train when she listened to his message -- wasn't that proof that he could well be alive somewhere?

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No, I think the next station announcement was all about confirming that he was on his way to the National Assembly building, and his phone was proof. But who would have known to snatch it back from her hands?

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Thank you, @lindag late bloomer. For some reason I thought he was leaving work on the train. Lord knows what gave me that impression.

Perhaps someone was tracing a locator beacon on the phone. That would be one way to explain why the phone was taken from her. But maybe there are other explanations.

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Interesting.

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Ep. 6, about halfway through, we've just been introduced to two of the commandos by name. That gives me the BAD feeling that they won't be coming home.

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Have you watched season 1 of the US series. This storyline is directly from that.

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No, I didn't watch it. I stopped watching most TV altogether until I discovered Korean dramas a few years ago.

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Did investigation part was sidelined in original too? I feel like there isn't really any effort on NIS side just from bits we were shown.

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Sure did. Hannah was almost killed, framed for a murder and then arrested (and her boss' kid was kidnapped to keep Hannah and the investigation in check). It got back to Kirkman what happened and he asked her to continue on with the investigation.

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I meant it as if it had so little screen time, because I feel like we don't really had any real investigation showed so far, but what you described sounds pretty awsome, hope we see it.

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It might be difficult as they are going on a 22 episode season and trying to condense it to 12.

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Hmm, looks like we may be in for something similar in ep. 8.

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They looked so slow and stupid in ep. 7. Even I knew the guy with his hat pulled down was delivering poisoned food. So after letting him get away, they stood around talking for a bit before getting the cc-tv video? Shouldn't they have sent out an APB on that guy? Shouldn't they be looking for him on Oh YS's squad from that battle seven years ago? And when Boss Agent found Oh YS in the president's office, don't you think he should have had a fallback plan for getting the info to the president through someone else or at a different time? That whole plotline seems so poorly thought out. Why are they such bumblers?

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I wonder if the Weasel's attitude to President Park will change based on his heartfelt compassion for the soldiers. I'm sure it must have contrasted with the way he and his men were abandoned by everyone in the battle he talked about earlier.

When I thought the Weasel might turn out to be a good guy, then I wondered if there would be a loveline between him and Ms. Han. But I've gone back to thinking that her fiance survived, but is in hiding. I think he was on to the Weasel's plans, and he is the one who called her from in front of her apartment. She was looking at his photo, missing him, and he was out in front, watching her light. I wonder when she will begin to suspect this too.

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They seem to have dropped the part about her picking up her fiance's phone and seeing the plan of the building collapse. I hope we get to know more about what that's about - if he was in on it then she is going to feel preettttytytyty guilty.
For the time being 'Weasel Oppa' looks hella suspicious....

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@stpauligurl,
I'm hopping mad that Agent Han found her fiance's phone among those collected onsite, and then someone stole it right under her nose. She's withheld the information from her boss.

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@pakalanapikake - I agree!
What is interesting is that they stole it from her hands right in front of the tent - like they were waiting there!
And that shady character falling from the roof - ouch. But then she gave up. Isn't she curious about her fiance's phone?
Vedddyyyyy intelesting.....

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I’m trying to figure out was she thinking her fiancé had a double identity or was he killed on duty to investigate it.

I’m guilty of dozing off when she’s on screen thus missing some details

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The whole investigation part is bit lacking imho, they should spare more screentime on that.

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Nah, he is too far gone into "the greater good" route to be swayed by that. That scene at memorial was very telling, with "Your sacrifice will not be wasted", he will justified the hell out of every horrible thing on the road to become president.

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Discussion aside I want to make comment in honour of true OTP of the series, newly appointed Chief of Staff Cha and Press Secretary Kim :D

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OH yes - I love these two!!! Can wait until COS Cha finally gives in and gives the PS Kim the respect he deserves.

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As of ep. 6, methinks there's a birth secret because cranky son freaked out when he saw that photo of his obviously pregnant mom with a man who isn't President Dad. Are we going to find out that Mom was married to Dad's best buddy from college -- who ended up getting killed or terminally ill, so Dad married her so her child wouldn't be a bastard? Was Junior's fist fight at school the result of someone persecuting him after discovering his secret?

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I don't know why but I thought it meant she is not his mother? Do you remember by chance the date on the photo?

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@shach,
In ep. 5, the photo is dated 05 03 16, which I interpreted as YYMMDD rather than MMDDYY. If the year were 2016, it would be too recent for little sister, who is older than 3 years.

I'm wondering if Bio-Dad was from DPRK, which was why Mrs. Choi became a human rights lawyer -- or maybe how they met? The way she's sitting with her hand on her belly says "pregnant" to me.

Junior asked Prez Dad if he had ever lied to him, and he said no. I take that to mean that Prez Dad added Sonny Boy to his family registry and totally regards him as his son.

I can just imagine Opposition Leader Yoon getting some mileage out of this, especially if she came make President Park look like a liar. A few years ago, there was a "scandal" over an actor having cited an earlier wedding date so that it would jibe with the child's birthday; Mom had been married before. It was insane how people got all bent out of shape out of a private matter that was none of their darned business. I felt bad for the child finding out in such a manner. Schadenfreude as blood sport.

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Ah, that make more sense.

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We'll see how long that lasts. I could be completely wrong about it.

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Apropos of Prez Park's insistence on telling the truth, I was reminded of an apocryphal quote from Mark Twain:

http://factmyth.com/factoids/if-you-tell-the-truth-you-dont-have-to-remember-anything/

Tell the truth and ditch having to remember your lies.

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I said before I want more screen time for investigation, I take it back. It was awful, it would be miracle that ROK lasted as an independent country for so long if it had intelligence and military forces as portrayed by this writers.

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I really liked ep. 9. I liked their backstory, I liked the way PMJ didn't care about the political fallout, he was determined to protect Si-wan. I like the way they were able to shift the focus of the story to the First Lady as a positive role model.

Maybe one of the reasons I enjoyed the ep was because they kept the Weasel to a minimum? His smug face really annoys me.

I suspect that Mr. Han is the mole in the Blue House. I suspect that he had a son who died in that battle seven years ago. Or if he didn't die, he was tortured and has never recovered.

I knew Secret Agent Fiance Kim Jun-o was still alive! I knew he was the one who saved HNG when Oh's henchman was trying to kill her. I'm really surprised though, that he found a way to communicate with the president secretly when poor Han-mo could not.

I'm also finding it hard to buy all the collateral damage from this new world-building. I get it that the Oh YS and his team are embittered and want to overturn the system, but they are embittered because they were left to die. So how can their movement -- which seems to be founded on valuing human life -- justify not only blowing up the National Assembly building, but also taking individual human lives, including possibly Han-mo's innocent son, who could die of an allergic reaction????

Last but not least, when are we going to see Mr. Cha acknowledge his feelings for Ms. Choi and vice versa? The way that she kept pushing his buttons to get what she wanted was really cute, and the way that he kept falling for it was even cuter.

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I haven't watched new episode yet, but I hope we won't have a love triangle, because in ep.8 we had Ms. Choi flirting with Sec.Kim and I would hate if it ruined Sec.Kim and CoS. Cha budding bromance.
And I keep wonder where Oh YS got money to run for Assembly and to finance the whole terrorist operation? Soldiers are not that well paid to afford that nice house Agent Han interrogate him in.

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Good point about the money. Maybe he's from a rich family?

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Maybe, but than would he be in military? And how he was able to recruit NIS boss, is there another Big Bad hiding in the shadows?

On another note, Secretary Kim should never be told any secrets, he isn't capable of keeping one :D

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One thing, Secret Agent Fiance is really handsome, but the rescue scene was a bit funny, because they showed him giving the warning shot before going at Agent Han attacker, I pretty sure that's not how super secret agents should operate :D
(It remind me of "Live" and how police revolers in SK has first bullet blind, and to think that secret agents has blinds in their guns too, made me laugh some more).

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Isn't it interesting that the lead photo for this preview features not Pres. Park but Secretary Han? Because I am now convinced that Secretary Han is the VIP. I think that's why he apologized to the first lady in the hospital. I think he's the only one with the connections and behind the scenes power to pull this off, and I think he did it because he was so disappointed that the man he believed in was not able to accomplish anything. So he made him a martyr.

I was surprised that Oh YS was not the VIP, and I think that he's going to rebel against his role. He takes himself too seriously to be someone else's puppet. I have the feeling that when the final confrontation comes, he's going to die protecting President Park. That's just a feeling.

I'm also convinced that people who gave up on the secretary ship were mistaken. Secretary Cha and Ms. Jung are going to figure it out in the end, and when they realize who gave Cha the order to make that phone call, they will have smoked out Secretary Han. And when it's all over, she's going to ask him out for chicken and beer.

My predictions. ; )

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The main thing I got out of ep. 12 was that the air was cleared between Secretary Cha and Secretary Jung. Don't worry, Secretary Jung, there's chicken and beer in your future.

I really don't get why Oh YS is allowing himself to be a pawn in someone else's game. With his ego and his self-righteousness, I would think he would want to run the game himself. I don't think he would have chosen to get closer to the Americans. It's interesting how the tailor has kept all his pawns compartmentalized. I don't think Oh YS and the General knew they were on the same team.

I can't stand the mayor, but I'm really getting rather fond of Ms. Yun. I love the way she got to the real heart of the stock market crisis. I also really liked her moment with Pres. Park, when she said he was the only referee she could trust.

And I'm still convinced that Secretary Han is the VIP. What's really behind it? Not sure. Now that we know that Oh YS is just another pawn, I don't think he has any personal connection to Oh's story. He just was smart enough to scout Oh for his plan.

I can't believe they have just two weeks left to find the bomber and elect a new president!

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Ep. 13 -- How about that basketball showdown? Was it really all about policy, or was it partly about Secretary Jung?

I'm wavering a little on my theory that Secretary Han is the VIP. I'd like to think someone took advantage of his bitterness to enlist him in revolutionary change -- but without letting him know they'd be blowing up his friend Pres. Yang and everyone else at the National Assembly. But in the end the only other person with enough influence is Ms. Yun, and I don't want to believe it's her either. I think she's capable enough to win on her own without blowing up her opponent, and after her warm words in the hospital room, I don't think she would have targeted Pres. Park for death. I think one reason Secretary Han is so dismissive of Pres. Park as a presidential candidate is because he doesn't want him to get in the way and get hurt. I think he really gave himself away when he was talking about Oh YS and how the people got what they wanted/what they deserved.

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Policy. Throughout the series there was never any type of one upmanship regarding Jeong. Kim has a crush, he knows something is going on between her and Cha, and that's it.

That scene felt like those games have been going on long before she arrived at the Blue House.

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In the middle of ep. 14 -- He realizes that he sacrificed policy to politics, and looked down at the shoes, the shoes that don't seem to bother him anymore.

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Am I the only one getting tired of Pres. Park's perpetual concerned look?

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No you are not. And it is amazing how it changes when he is called on his BS or someone says he wrong.

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