You’re All Surrounded: Episode 19
The pressure mounts on all sides, and our team gets backed into a corner with nothing left to do but lean on each other. As far as finale setups go, this is a pretty good one—it’s plot-heavy since we have to set the stage for the big takedown, but we stop to let the reactions sink in, and well, if you’re anything like Dae-gu, you’re gonna need a moment to keep your head from exploding. The blatant injustice of this dramaverse would be enough to break anybody, but with a finale on the horizon, there’s hope yet that the law will prevail just once in our hero’s life.
SONG OF THE DAY
Eden – “One Love” for the You’re All Surrounded OST [ Download ]
EPISODE 19: “I’m the desperate guy above that guy”
Dae-gu and Soo-sun run alongside the stretcher as Chief Kang gets wheeled into surgery. They pace back and forth out in the hall, and soon Pan-seok and the other department heads arrive.
Soo-sun confirms that Chief Kang lost a lot of blood, and they’ve been waiting for the results of her surgery. One of the other detectives says he looked into the traffic accident, and the driver of the dump truck was found to be falling asleep at the wheel. My foot.
The surgeon comes out and says the surgery went well, but they don’t know if she’ll ever wake up because she was in such bad shape when she arrived. He prepares them for the worst, and Sa-kyung can’t contain her tears.
Dae-gu pulls Pan-seok aside and admits that he was right about Chief Kang being their mystery Detective Seo. She confessed everything to him, and even told him about the recorder that Boots left behind.
What’s more is that he and Soo-sun followed her today, and she came out of a meeting with Assemblyman Yoo looking frustrated, and minutes later she was driven off the road by the dump truck. It was no accident—they saw that truck come barreling toward her.
Dae-gu says he thought about it the whole time she was in surgery: If they want to catch Assemblyman Yoo for this, does that mean they have to drag Chief Kang’s name through the mud as well? He grits his teeth and says with determination that they need to catch that bastard, even if it means letting the world know what Chief Kang did. Pan-seok agrees.
Dae-gu and Soo-sun go straight to Chief Kang’s house to look for the recorder, and find the place already ransacked. Well, at least it backs their murder theory. Dae-gu sighs in defeat, but Soo-sun urges him not to give up—they could’ve still missed it after searching the whole house.
As they rifle through her home office, Soo-sun finds a whole box full of letters from Dae-gu. He tells her now that the benefactor he mentioned who helped him go to college was actually Chief Kang. In the box, she finds a little sticker picture of Dae-gu and Chief Kang, and she suggests he put it by her hospital bed. She heard once that people can hear while in comas, and tells him to say everything he wants to say while he has the chance.
Pan-seok goes to Chief Toad and tells him the whole truth, going eleven years back. To the silly toad man’s credit, he declares that they’ll do whatever it takes to put Assemblyman Yoo behind bars for what he did to their leader. He realizes now why Chief Kang has been acting so weird lately, putting all her affairs in order and constantly speaking in hypotheticals about taking care of the police force in her absence.
Chief Toad gets all fired up, and volunteers himself to lead the investigation. Ha, it’s written all over Pan-seok’s face that the offer is more pain than help, but he lets the toad have his moment, and thanks him for lending his detective skills.
The team gets to work in combing through the accident scene, and Chief Toad gets to bust out his best NYPD Blue interrogation tactics on the dump truck driver. Meanwhile Tae-il takes Boots’ black box camera to the tech team, but all they get is fuzz, due to rain damage.
Pan-seok and Tae-il search Chief Kang’s office to see if she might’ve hidden the recorder there, and Pan-seok finds a letter addressed to him tucked away in a drawer. She writes that in a few days’ time the bill will be passed, and she’s prepared to reveal everything and receive her lawful judgment.
She admits how scared she is when she thinks of the trauma that Dae-gu will experience when he learns the truth. She asks Pan-seok to look after him if she ends up going to prison: “I can’t stand the thought that I’m going leave that child with pain he cannot handle once again.” She ends the letter by apologizing to Pan-seok sincerely.
Dae-gu spends the night sitting by Chief Kang’s bedside, and he talks about his appendix surgery a few years ago. He remembers how he told her it was no big deal, but she came anyway and held his hand all night long. “Truthfully, I was so happy then. It really felt like you were my mom.”
That’s why he brought her carnations that following parents’ day, and insisted they take that silly sticker picture together. He shows her the picture now to remind her, and then adds, “But right now everything, including this picture, feels like a lie. So you can’t die like this. There are still so many things you haven’t told me.”
He tells her she has to wake up and leaves the picture by her pillow. And though she doesn’t stir, a tear falls from the corner of her eye.
Chief Toad greets the team with the news that he cracked the case wide open, making a big fuss over his indefatigable detective prowess before finally telling them that he found the dump truck driver on a traffic camera waiting for three hours before getting behind the wheel just five minutes before supposedly falling asleep and causing the crash.
During the meeting, Pan-seok gets a call that stops him cold, and everyone waits on pins and needles for him to tell them what happened. He starts, “Chief Kang…” Wait, this is a fakeout, right? She woke up?
But then we cut to a procession of uniformed officers marching in the rain. Dae-gu leads the way, carrying Chief Kang’s picture. Ugh, nicely played, Show.
It’s a beautiful sequence as they bury her in the rain and salute their leader one last time.
Behind them, a car pulls up to join the funeral belatedly, and out steps Assemblyman Yoo. Wow, you would dare to show your face here. Dae-gu snarls and lurches forward like an angry pit bull, and Soo-sun grabs him hurriedly. She whispers that now isn’t the time, and he holds onto her hand with a death-grip, like he might snap and kill someone if she let go.
The whole team watches with utter incredulity as Assemblyman Yoo walks past them and lays a flower on Chief Kang’s grave, acting the part of grieving friend. He shakes Chief Toad’s hand, and then turns to look Dae-gu right in the eye, with a freaking smile on his face.
Pan-seok swallows back his reaction and Soo-sun holds Dae-gu’s hand even tighter. The rest of the force ushers Assemblyman Yoo back to his car respectfully, but our team and those who know the truth remain with their feet firmly planted by Chief Kang’s grave—our lonely few who will make sure she didn’t die in vain.
The rain stops, and Sa-kyung finds Pan-seok standing alone on the hill. He tells her about the first time he ever wanted to give up on a case, when he’d exhausted all leads and grown weary of the victim’s family’s cries for justice. Back then Chief Kang was his team leader, and he asked her how long he was supposed to remain on the case; she said as long as it took to make the victim’s family understand. He decided then that he wanted to become a detective like her.
He says that Chief Kang apologized to him in the end, but now he realizes that he’s the one who’s sorry, for letting her fall into this trap and for not trusting her until the end. It was only when he saw Dae-gu’s unwavering faith in her that he saw how jaded he’d become by comparison.
Sa-kyung reassures him that he’s no lost cause, and says that Chief Kang was a true police officer whose loyalty to the force was unmatched, and that she’s sure she’s in a good place.
Tae-il and Dae-gu wake up the next morning greeted by an enormous breakfast spread. Gook cooked all morning (though he eventually admits that Mom sent him up some food, heh), and urges them to eat and keep up their strength.
Soo-sun sends Dae-gu a text to say that she’s downstairs at the playground, and he lies to the guys that it’s a spam message. He heads down, where she follows his massive breakfast with more breakfast, thinking he hasn’t had anything to eat. He very sweetly eats again anyway.
As he eats, he turns to her and says out of the blue, “Don’t betray me.” He tells her to give him advance warning if she’s ever going to like another man, and she agrees with a smile. He adds, “But more than that, there’s something else you can never do… Don’t die in front of me.” Oof.
He can feel the tears welling up in his throat, so he starts to stuff his face with rice balls. She tells him to stop, and gives her word that she won’t ever die in front of him. As soon as she says the words, his tears come spilling out.
Soo-sun asks in return: “Then you have to tell me you’re hurting when you’re hurting, that you’re having a hard time when you’re having a hard time, when you want to cry, when you’re mad, when you want to yell like crazy.” She walks over to his swing and wipes his tear away, and he clutches her hand to his face and cries.
The team gets Boots’ black box camera repaired, and footage from the day before Boots attacked Dae-gu shows him receiving money in exchange for an envelope. The man making the exchange is Assemblyman Yoo’s attorney.
Then Chief Toad bursts in to say that he finally broke the truck driver, and he confessed that the person who ordered the hit was the very same Lawyer Kim. Eung-do calls Lawyer Kim in for questioning, and the smug bastard says that in both instances, he was working under Madam Yoo’s orders.
The team knows this makes no sense—Assemblyman Yoo is clearly trying to pawn his crimes off on his daughter. They wonder what the plan is, and then discover that Madam Yoo has already been transferred out of prison and into a mental institution. They guffaw at the obvious ploy to away with all of this on the insanity plea.
A commotion in the precinct draws the team out of their conference room, and they find Madam Yoo’s son Ki-jae standing there screaming for Dae-gu. I love that he still calls Dae-gu “jjang-jjang man” even though he’s angry. He shoves the DNA test results at him and says that they’re totally unrelated (ohthankgod), and demands to know why Mom would kill anyone when they aren’t even half-brothers.
Dae-gu flips through the results, shocked to know that he isn’t part of that wretched family after all. Ki-jae points out that something’s terribly wrong here—his mother is someone who gets the other party to sign a waiver before beating someone up, so does it make any sense that she’d kill a person before making sure of the facts? Well now things are getting a little more interesting.
Ki-jae asks if Dae-gu knows where his mom is, and Dae-gu wonders why he’s coming here to ask. Sweet naïve Ki-jae just cries that of course he’d come to the police station to look for his missing mom—isn’t that what cops do?
Ki-jae wails that Mom disappeared after being transferred to the mental hospital, and Dad, Grandpa, and Lawyer Kim are all ignoring his calls. Sa-kyung takes over and tells him to report his mother missing first so they can look for her, and he pleads for Dae-gu to find his mom as he’s being pulled away.
The team lets the latest revelation sink in, and they posit that Madam Yoo must’ve killed Mom under a mistaken assumption, since she clearly believed Dae-gu to be her husband’s son.
They plan their next course of action, and Pan-seok grudgingly gives permission when Sa-kyung asks to take Tae-il along on her search, and Gook jumps at the chance to help Soo-sun go through Chief Kang’s house one more time. Both Dae-gu and Pan-seok pout silently.
Dae-gu goes to see Director Shin and shares the DNA test results with him. His only purpose in approaching Faux Bio-Dad is to find out where Madam Yoo is, and Director Shin asks for some time to figure out what’s going on. You’re as useless as ever.
He goes straight to his father-in-law to ask where his wife is, pretending like he wants to see her because he’s sorry and feels responsible. Assemblyman Yoo scoffs at his sudden concern after ignoring her for decades, and adds bitterly that she might’ve chased after her husband like a fool, but her father was her true provider.
Director Shin shows an inch of spine and points out the hypocrisy of acting like the saintly protective father when they’re cut from the same opportunistic cloth; he at least doesn’t plan on also taking from his child.
Meanwhile, Sa-kyung and Tae-il find a witness who saw Madam Yoo being forced into an ambulance against her will. That’s when it occurs to them that she might not be in on it—her husband and father could’ve had her committed.
Soo-sun goes through Chief Kang’s home office again, and this time she reads a few of the thank-you cards that Dae-gu sent over the years, and smiles at the pictures of him as an adorable nerdy pre-law student.
She puts them back in the box, and then it occurs to her that this might be the place she’d hide something meant for Dae-gu. She empties the container and hears something still rattling inside, and cuts open the bottom… There’s the recorder tucked inside.
They bring it back to the precinct so the team can listen to it together. In the audio recording, Boots asks specifically what the instructions are, and Assemblyman Yoo tells him to reproduce the DNA test to show the opposite results. Boots asks if he’s going to give his daughter the falsified test showing that Ji-yong is Director Shin’s son.
Assemblyman Yoo says it’s the only way to get her to support him again in time for the election. He says bitterly that she’s so fooled by her shell of a husband that she’s dared to cut the company purse strings for his political campaign, and he won’t have it. Wow, all that for money. They look over worriedly at Dae-gu, who mutters in disbelief, “That’s it? That was the reason that my mother died?”
They file out of the room to give him some space, and as soon as he’s alone, Dae-gu lets out a yell and tears the room apart. Soo-sun stands just outside the door, determined to listen to his cries no matter how painful it is, and she refuses to let Gook and Tae-il drag her away.
Dae-gu’s screams and furious furniture-smashing can be heard loud and clear by everyone, and Soo-sun just stands guard resolutely by the door, tears spilling down her cheeks.
Pan-seok gets up from his desk with determination, but he’s cut off at the door by Prosecutor Han, that nasty piece of work who serves corrupt politicians. He relishes telling Pan-seok that he’s here to take over their investigation, and orders his staff to confiscate everything that belongs to Pan-seok’s team.
Soo-sun can’t contain her anger and challenges the prosecutor, asking what they were supposed to do when they’re putting their lives on the line to find the truth and getting stabbed to protect evidence, when the prosecutor’s office just covers up the crimes in the end.
He just ignores her and orders a staffer to get the stuff in their locker room too, but when he opens the door, he backs out slowly in terror, as Dae-gu steps out. Everyone’s eyes widen as he comes out to face Prosecutor Han looking like he might kill someone. And then we see that he’s got a baseball bat in his hand. Whoa.
He goes apeshit and just starts breaking everything with the bat, slamming it down over and over, and busting every single one of their laptops in the process. Things go flying and everyone flinches, from the prosecutor down to his own teammates.
In between smashing everything in sight with the bat, he mouths off that the prosecutor isn’t going to investigate with the stuff they take anyway, so what’s the difference? Oh snap.
He finally throws the bat down and goes back to the locker room to start packing his things, and Prosecutor Han blusters that he’s totally leaving right now because he feels like it, but will be back to collect the rest of the stuff. He adds that Pan-seok should hand over every last bit of evidence with both hands if he doesn’t want his whole team to be reprimanded for obstruction of justice, and promises to send an internal affairs team to inspect his team’s conduct shortly.
As soon as he’s gone, the team rushes in to stop Dae-gu, but he tells the boys to get out of his way. He’s determined to quit, and screams that he’s fed up with being a powerless cop. They beg him to hold it in just once more, and he cries, “How much more? Until when?!”
They have to tackle him to keep him there, and then Pan-seok calls out, “Don’t hold it in!” He says it’ll make him sick if he holds it in any longer, and tells him to let it all out instead of being patient. That calms Dae-gu down, one hothead to another.
Pan-seok asks if Dae-gu is confident that he can reveal the truth in this case, and Dae-gu says he’ll do whatever it takes. They all chime in that they’ll solve it no matter what, and Pan-seok agrees that they will. He says that in exchange, they have to trust him no matter what he does from this point forth, and follow his lead. “Have you forgotten? I’m the legendary Seo Pan-seok.”
The team gets to work calling a roster of reporters, and then they watch as Prosecutor Han gives a public statement on TV naming Madam Yoo as the culprit in both murders. The team calls a small press conference of their own at the precinct, and Pan-seok gets dressed in his uniform in preparation. Eung-do tries to stop him, pleading with him to find another way. But Pan-seok just asks how he looks and gives Eung-do one last pat on the shoulder before going in to meet the press.
Eung-do and the kids stand in the back as he addresses the room and says that today he can’t abide by the law and order of a police officer. He takes off his hat, his badge, and even his jacket—the literal “taking off of clothes,” a metaphor for being stripped of one’s title and job.
He says that the reason he’s taken his clothes off today is so that he can take someone else’s clothes off. It’s not as sexy as the words make it sound, since he means he’s going to bring someone down with him as he goes.
I’m with Eung-do on this—I wonder if it’s absolutely necessary for Pan-seok to hand over his badge when technically, his job is on the line anyway, and he could maybe accomplish some things before getting fired and forced to leave. Though perhaps it’s semantics, since the second he accuses Assemblyman Yoo of being a murderer, he’ll lose his job anyway. I think it’s a case where the metaphor trumps all, because he needs to make the sacrifice as their leader. Also, I’m hoping that by resigning before they can lock him up, he can just work the case from home.
I came into this episode expecting Chief Kang to be dead, so when she survived the surgery, I totally thought they were going to cop out and have her wake up and give Dae-gu all his answers. But it’s so much better this way, with the bittersweet regret lingering there, and all the unrealized potential of her mother-son relationship with Dae-gu gone with her. It makes me feel better that she specifically asked Pan-seok to look after him (though if we don’t get a proper resolution to him taking up the mantle and being Dae-gu’s guardian in her place, I’m going to be sad about it). She was a lovely character, and her sendoff felt appropriately dignified and epic.
I’m so glad Dae-gu isn’t a part of that horrid family, not that it fully makes up for the weeks spent dangling that birth secret over our heads. At least the result takes the edge off, and he gets to bring the whole house down without having to make peace with a spineless bio-dad, or think that Mom was made to suffer and lie to him his whole life because of pressure from rich crazy people. I’m annoyed at the birth secret merry-go-round, but I do like that the truth ends up being so deflating—all of that for campaign money?
I always like when the motive for murder ends up being so base and mundane as to be laughable. Because the elaborate schemes are made even more ridiculous by comparison, and there is no justifying a killer’s actions as pitiable in a case like this—nothing drove him to do it except for pure selfish greed and desire for power. Not that our villain was complex to begin with. I mean he’s basically the most wooden cardboard cutout of a baddie you could invent, which is a shame since we end up spending so much story time chasing him, and the central mystery could’ve been more compelling had he been given some layers. On the upside, maybe his clear-cut villainy means the case will be solved in record time in the finale, and we can spend lots of time with our characters doing cute things.
Dae-gu’s outburst in the precinct was pretty cathartic, especially after weeks of watching him get beat down by tragic circumstances. But more importantly it’s Pan-seok who knows how to get through to him. It’s great that he learns something from watching Dae-gu with Chief Kang—how to put his trust in someone till the end—and in the end he entrusts his kids to get the case done without him. The rookies could still screw it all up, but somebody has to take the first leap. It’s the chicken-egg conundrum of putting your faith in someone hoping that they rise to the occasion. They’ve proven that they can actually be detectives, so now it’s his turn to trust them and let them swim on their own like a good mama duck.
And we see that the second Pan-seok chooses to back them up and let them fight for what they believe in, their attitudes change. Dae-gu goes from wanting to give up on everything, to looking up to Pan-seok with genuine respect for the first time. I just love that while the legend has so many things to teach the rookies about being good cops, there’s one thing he can’t beat—their shiny, untarnished idealism—and in this case he learns something from them. It’s a great way to bring the team full circle… yunno, as long as the rookies don’t muck it up in finale. No pressure!
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 18
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 17
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 16
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 15
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 14
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 13
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 12
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 11
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 10
- Lee Seung-gi injured on the set of You’re All Surrounded
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 9
- Election preemptions for Wednesday dramas
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 8
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 7
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 6
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 5
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 4
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 3
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 2
- You’re All Surrounded: Episode 1