Missing 9: Episode 13
Boy, this show just loves to dole out its information in teeny tiny pieces — just when we think we have a handle on the past, we see a bit more, and everything we thought we knew gets turned on its ear. As the search for So-hee’s phone continues, more information about the night of Jae-hyun’s death comes to light, and the truth is worse than anything his friends could have ever imagined.
EPISODE 13 RECAP
Joon-oh and Bong-hee follow Investigator Oh to a gas station, but the box that Joon-oh swipes from Oh’s car turns out to be empty — So-hee’s phone isn’t there. Joon-oh feels someone watching him and turns to see Tae-ho, staring in disbelief.
He actually looks a bit glad to see Joon-oh alive, but Joon-oh just tells him, “I’m not alive, Tae-ho-yah. I feel at ease like this.” He walks past Tae-ho, completely unafraid, and takes Bong-hee back to their car.
On the ride home, Bong-hee tells Joon-oh that he did well to hold back when he saw Tae-ho. Joon-oh looks at her with a sappy expression, then dryly tells her to watch the road. Ha. Joon-oh calls Tae-young and tells him that Chairwoman Jo must still have So-hee’s phone. He says that Tae-ho saw him, and Tae-young just figures they need to step up their timeline for action.
Tae-ho reports back to CEO Jang about Joon-oh, and warns him not to try to exclude him again like he did this evening. Playing innocent, CEO Jang says that he just didn’t want to look suspicious, and that excluding him was just a side effect.
He tells Tae-ho that they’ll keep looking for the phone, and Tae-ho warns him to keep him in the loop from now on. In the meantime, he needs CEO Jang’s men to help him look for Joon-oh. Then they can frame him for murder and Tae-ho can stop worrying about being found out.
Once alone, CEO Jang decides that it’s time to get serious. He shaves his head, getting rid of the long hair, which makes him look even scarier than before.
Bong-hee joins Joon-oh as he’s drinking a beer on the rooftop, and they compare the Seoul sky to the bright starry sky on the island. Bong-hee says that looking at the stars always made her feel better while they were stranded, and Joon-oh says, a little sadly, that all he thought about was surviving. But he decides that, now that he thinks about it, he felt more peaceful while on the island.
He takes a little plastic container from his pocket, one of those prizes you get in coin machines with a small charm inside. He gives it to Bong-hee, but she wants to know what it is for before she accepts. Joon-oh gets all huffy, saying that he just wanted to give her something, and starts to turn away.
Bong-hee lunges to pull him back, and she accidentally knocks him off-balance. He ends up on his knees in front of her, holding up the charm, looking for all the world like he’s proposing. After a long, awkward moment, he stands and snappishly gives her the charm, but Bong-hee can’t hide her smile.
The next day, while Bong-hee is on the phone with her mom, Joon-oh rushes into the room looking concerned. CEO Jang’s goons are ransacking the building, and Joon-oh and Bong-hee are nearly caught as they slip by them with suitcases. There’s a second mob of goons sitting outside Tae-young’s work building, not even pretending that they’re not spying.
Ki-joon is approaches by Ji-ah’s money-hungry mother in the Legend building, and she slaps him hard then grabs his shirt. She’s evidently heard the (untrue) rumors that Ki-joon got Ji-ah pregnant on the island, and she screams at him for defiling her daughter. She doesn’t believe his denials, and reminds him that Ji-ah supports their entire family and can’t afford to be ruined.
CEO Jang and Tae-ho witness the confrontation, but they wisely decide to stay out of it. Ki-joon tells Ji-ah’s mother that if she cared about her daughter that much, she’d stop taking advantage of her, when she’s already working after going through such a traumatic experience.
He tells her to let Ji-ah go, aware that her mother has borrowed so much money from the company that Ji-ah will have to work for decades to pay it back. Ji-ah approaches and takes her mother away, embarrassed in front of Ki-joon.
CEO Jang calls Ki-joon to his office to ask if it’s true that Joon-oh is back. Ki-joon tries to play dumb, but Tae-ho is there and he says that he saw him. CEO Jang mentions that Ji-ah’s mother just asked for more money, and tells him that he and Ji-ah need to make their stances on the Joon-oh issue clear.
Ki-joon remembers how CEO Jang threatened Ji-ah’s life if he doesn’t comply, and he tells CEO Jang that he still intends to obey. He adds that Joon-oh probably hates him anyway for accusing him of murdering So-hee, but Tae-ho challenges him to prove that he wouldn’t take Joon-oh’s side if he had the chance.
On his way out of the building, Ki-joon runs into Ji-ah, but she looks ashamed and says they can talk later. Joon-oh calls Ki-joon, but Ki-joon doesn’t pick up.
Tae-young and his men join Bong-hee, Joon-oh, and Byung-jae by the riverbank, which they chose so that Joon-oh wouldn’t be seen. Inspector Jo tells everyone what they know so far of the events surrounding Jae-hyun’s death.
So-hee had promised to testify that his death was a murder, intending to talk to reporter Ki-won, but she’d changed her mind. Ki-won decided to investigate things himself, but at first he had no luck finding any proof. Then one day he received an unmarked envelope with the CCTV photos from Jae-hyun’s building, showing that Tae-ho entered the building after Joon-oh left that night.
Ki-won deduced that Tae-ho must have killed Jae-hyun, then staged his death as a suicide. But he had to have had an accomplice, someone to throw Jae-hyun’s body off the building while Tae-ho was below with the others.
When Prosecutor Jo checked into the CCTV footage, he’d found that there were no recordings from the day of the incident. The building’s back door camera was broken, so he guessed that if CEO Jang helped Tae-ho as they suspect, he must have gone out the back, then bribed the doorman for the front door footage.
Tae-young says that they need to confirm if it really was CEO Jang who threw Jae-hyun’s body out the window, and find out what’s in So-hee’s phone. Joon-oh reveals that it was CEO Jang who scouted Tae-ho, and even though he couldn’t sing, he was still celebrity material so CEO Hwang loved him.
He agrees that CEO Jang would have helped Tae-ho out of such a bind, and Bong-hee adds that CEO Jang had threatened Ki-won. She remembers that So-hee was talking to CEO Jang on the phone when they first met on the plane, but she doesn’t tell the others this bit of information, thinking it unimportant.
When they get a text asking to meet, Joon-oh and Bong-hee head out together to talk with someone who knew So-hee. Joon-oh stays in the car with his face covered, listening through the cracked window while Bong-hee goes to talk with the woman, whose name is Se-mi.
She used to work as Ji-ah’s stylist, then moved to So-hee, and she tries to leave when she discovers they want to discuss So-hee and not Ji-ah. She’s reluctant to say anything about So-hee until Bong-hee says she used to be a stylist and knows how difficult celebrities can be. HAHA, her one day on the job with Joon-oh taught her all she needed to know.
Se-mi reveals that So-hee often acted strange, and tells of one day when she was frantic because she thought Se-mi lost her phone. So-hee had been hateful to Se-mi until she found the phone in the couch cushions, and she’d cradled the phone to her chest like a baby.
Se-mi says that at first she thought So-hee was just addicted to her phone, but she also had serious mood swings and made people around her miserable. One night Se-mi witnessed So-hee and CEO Jang talking, and So-hee had been really rude and aggressive to her boss.
Joon-oh and Bong-hee update Ji-ah on everything, and Joon-oh is incredulous that it may have been So-hee threatening CEO Jang all this time, not the other way around. Ji-ah remembers going to the office one day, angry that So-hee was being given a part that Ji-ah was promised. CEO Jang had told Ji-ah to let it go, and Ji-ah had sarcastically asked So-hee what she had on CEO Jang, unaware that she was actually close to the truth.
Now Bong-hee mentions overhearing So-hee on the phone with CEO Jang, saying that she’d talk to him when they got home. She says it definitely sounded like So-hee had the upper hand, and Joon-oh thinks that there must be some evidence regarding Jae-hyun’s death on So-hee’s phone, since CEO Jang is so frantic to find it.
Ki-joon listens in while Tae-ho tells someone on the phone that he needs to see what’s in So-hee’s phone before CEO Jang gets to it. Tae-ho refuses to tell Ki-joon where they’re going, and says that if he thinks too much, both Joon-oh and Ji-ah will die.
CEO Jang goes to see Chairwoman Jo, who knows all about the search for the phone the previous evening. She asks why CEO Jang is also looking for the phone, and he guesses that she hasn’t seen what’s on it yet. He says vaguely that if she just hands the phone over to him, he’ll make sure no harm comes to her.
But, he adds, if it becomes known what’s on the phone, they’ll all be in danger. Chairwoman Jo says she needs time for the phone to be fixed and to think, and CEO Jang says he’ll wait for her call. Once he leaves, Chairwoman Jo tells Investigator Oh to get that phone fixed as soon as possible, because she’s dying to see what’s on it.
Now that her home is being watched, Joon-oh and Bong-hee have pretty much set up camp by the river in their car. Byung-jae brings them a recorder that looks like a microphone, and Bong-hee uses it when she gets a call from Investigator Oh.
She asks if there was a phone among the castaways’ belongings recovered from the island, and he tells her that it’s being repaired. He asks why she cares, and she just says that she wanted to see it since it belonged to So-hee.
Byung-jae locates three phone repair shops near Chairwoman Jo’s campaign office, so Joon-oh and Bong-hee go to check them out. They’re tailed by CEO Jang’s men, who call in Tae-ho once they figure out where they’re going. He heads inside the building wearing a mask, with Ki-joon trailing behind.
Tae-ho tells Ki-joon that they’re here to catch Joon-oh and find So-hee’s phone, and right then, Ki-joon spots Bong-hee and Joon-oh coming out of a nearby shop. He redirects Tae-ho’s attention elsewhere, while the two move on to the next shop.
The second shop is closed, but Tae-young calls Bong-hee to tell her that Prosecutor Jo knows where the phone is. He sends her the address and says he’ll meet her there.
Joon-oh spots Tae-ho, so he throws an arm around Bong-hee and hustles her out of there. Tae-ho sees them and thinks they look suspicious, but Ki-joon stops him to show him a text from CEO Jang that he found out where the phone is being repaired. Whew, that was too close.
Investigator Oh arrives at the repair shop, and CEO Jang sits in a car nearby, waiting for him to get possession of the phone. The instant Investigator Oh gets his hands on it, CEO Jang’s minions rush in and take it from him by force.
They give it to CEO Jang, who puts it in his jacket pocket. Before his driver can pull away, Tae-ho jumps in front of the car and lets himself in, giving CEO Jang a silent smirk. They drive off, with Tae-young tailing them close behind.
Bong-hee and Joon-oh arrive just in time to see Investigator Oh staggering out of the shop. They decide to follow him, but Tae-young calls to tell them to follow him to the Legend building.
As they drive, Tae-ho tells CEO Jang that a reporter was on the island with them. He mentions the photos of Tae-ho entering Jae-hyun’s building — the ones CEO Jang said he got rid of. Tae-ho asks if CEO Jang sent the photos to Ki-won, and CEO Jang hotly denies it.
Tae-ho says that he had no reason to suspect CEO Jang, but somehow things keep happening, and he’s starting to believe it. He says that the cell phone will reveal everything, and CEO Jang starts to look cornered.
The moment the car enters the Legend parking garage, Tae-ho punches the driver, grabs the phone from CEO Jang’s pocket, and escapes the car. But he finds the door to the building locked, and turns to see all of CEO Jang’s minions coming at him.
They attack, and Tae-ho holds his own for a surprisingly long time, but then one of the men shoves a knife into his belly. Tae-ho punches him out, but he falls and the goons kick him viciously. Just when it looks like he’s down for good, he grabs a nearby fire extinguisher and uses it to get the men off him. They catch him again, but somehow Tae-ho manages to get loose and makes a run for it.
CEO Jang sends the men after Tae-ho, but they run right past his hiding place among a pile of trash bags. He’s bleeding badly and in a lot of pain, but he takes out So-hee’s phone and turns it on.
He finds a recording, dated the night that Jae-hyun died. It sounds like CEO Jang’s voice, whispering, “Do you really want to live?” Tae-ho hears his own frightened voice answer, “Yes, I want to live,” and he recognizes the conversation.
Tae-ho’s mind floods with memories of the night Jae-hyun died. After accidentally shoving his friend and causing him to hit his head, Tae-ho had called CEO Jang, who came to help him. They’d dragged Jae-hyun’s body to the balcony door, and CEO Jang had told Tae-ho to leave, get a taxi and drive around the block, and come back when everyone else arrives. Tae-ho had looked down at Jae-hyun one last time, then he’d left.
Once he was gone, all the compassion had left CEO Jang’s face as he’d told Jae-hyun that he’s tired of his whining, and now Jae-hyun could finally help him. He’d reached down to pick up Jae-hyun’s body — and Jae-hyun opened his eyes. Oh god, he wasn’t dead, he was still alive!
Jae-hyun begged for his life, but CEO Jang had grabbed him by the hair and slammed his head into the wall, over and over until Jae-hyun stopped breathing. CEO Jang had thrown his body over the railing, just in time for everyone to see him fall and assume he jumped.
As Tae-ho listens to the truth of what happened that night, tears stream down his face and he gasps that he could have saved Jae-hyun’s life. He wonders out loud what he’s been doing all this time. He’s bleeding badly from his stab wound, and when Ki-joon calls him, he puts So-hee’s phone away and struggles to his feet.
Tae-ho makes it to where Ki-joon is waiting with the van, and he barely jumps inside before CEO Jang’s thugs arrive. Ki-joon sees that he’s bleeding badly, but Tae-ho finds the strength to look up, and sees a man sitting in the passenger seat. It’s Joon-oh, and Tae-ho looks distinctly unhappy to see him.
We see the conversation between Joon-oh and Ki-joon where they came up with this plan, though Ki-joon fought hard against it. He hadn’t wanted to pretend to be helping Tae-ho, but Joon-oh had said they would both be in danger if he didn’t.
Tae-ho asks where they’re taking him, and Joon-oh just says, “Where do you think?” Tae-ho seems to know what this means, but he’s too weak to object, and he passes out from loss of blood. They pull up to a hospital, and Joon-oh, wearing his mask, piggybacks Tae-ho inside. He drops him on a gurney without a word, and leaves him there.
In his hospital room, CEO Hwang still lies in a coma after his accident during his return to Korea. The room is quiet, but his hand starts to twitch, just a tiny bit.
Chairwoman Jo is angry when she discovers that Investigator Oh lost the phone, but as they go to leave the office, they hear a voice and turn to see Joon-oh, waggling the phone at them.
Meanwhile Ki-joon goes to the police and tells the truth, that Tae-ho killed So-hee. He explains that Ji-ah also wanted to tell the truth but was being threatened, and asks for her to be excused for extenuating circumstances.
The detective asks why he’s coming forward now, when it won’t bring Joon-oh back to life. Ki-joon smiles enigmatically, and says that he’s not doing it for that reason, but because it’s just the right thing to do.
Joon-oh sits down with Chairwoman Oh and plays the recording on So-hee’s phone for her. We see a flashback of the barely conscious Jae-hyun reaching out for his phone and answering a call from So-hee, and her listening in while CEO Jang killed him.
Chairwoman Jo is stunned silent, and Joon-oh says that this is the full truth of what happened the night Jae-hyun died. He thinks this is why she was killed, and he says that he came to Chairwoman Jo before going to the police for a reason. He asks her to save him, and let the world know that he came back alive. He tells her that he plans to hold a press conference to prove his innocence, and leaves her office.
Investigator Oh reminds Chairwoman Jo of the call they got from China, asking them to collect the recovered bodies. He says that he now believes the caller was Joon-oh, because he told Investigator Oh exactly where to find reporter Ki-won’s body.
In the hallway, Joon-oh leans on the wall and sinks to the floor, exhausted.
Well thank goodness someone finally found that damn phone. I was starting to think the show was going to drag this out for yet another episode, and it was starting to get old last week. But at least this episode seemed more tonally solid, staying firmly in suspenseful-action mode from start to finish, and we finally got to see exactly what happened on the night that Jae-hyun died.
I’m just traumatized at the truth of Jae-hyun’s death. I had suspected that CEO Jang helped Tae-ho by pushing Jae-hyun’s body off the building while Tae-ho was below in the parking lot, but I never suspected that Jae-hyun wasn’t actually dead, and that CEO Jang killed him deliberately and in cold blood. I could hardly watch that scene, when he was slamming Jae-hyun’s head against the wall while Jae-hyun begged for his life. That was horrible, and it puts CEO Jang into the same “murderer” category as Tae-ho, when previously I thought he was just willing to mop up after Tae-ho’s bad choices. I’m starting to suspect, as Tae-ho is, that CEO Jang has more to hide about that night, particularly about those photos of Tae-ho entering the building. So-hee knew he was the real murderer, and I can see him sending those pictures to Ki-won in an attempt to frame Tae-ho for Jae-hyun’s murder and take the focus off himself.
And my heart aches for So-hee, having to listen to the man she loved being killed in such a horrible manner. Then she used his death to blackmail CEO Jang and further her career, which had to be disturbing on several levels. No wonder she was slowly coming apart at the seams, and now I understand why she wanted to die on the island. She’d lost her love, her faith in humanity, and probably a significant amount of her grip on her sanity at that point. No doubt she was looking down the barrel of a lonely future with no control over her own life. I originally thought So-hee was being awfully melodramatic, trying to off herself right after miraculously surviving a terrible plane crash, but now it makes sense why she just wanted to die and end her own suffering. It also calls back the moment when Bong-hee talked So-hee off that cliff by reminding her that her brother would miss her — So-hee had forgotten that there was still at least one person who loved her, and would miss her if she were gone.
It was an interesting character moment for Tae-ho, when he realized that he was never responsible for Jae-hyun’s death, and that CEO Jang was the real killer all along. I’ve wondered if Tae-ho found it so easy to kill on the island because he already thought of himself as a killer. If that’s true, then the instant he realized that Jae-hyun was still alive when he left that apartment, he must have experienced such a rush of mixed emotions. I actually felt pity for Tae-ho, because his tears were genuine, and I’m guessing that he was suddenly regretting killing So-hee when it wasn’t necessary. His killing the pilot could be explained as a mercy death, since he was so badly injured there’s no way he would have survived. But Tae-ho knew in the moment that he heard that recording, that So-hee always knew he wasn’t Jae-hyun’s murderer — and as his only deliberate murder, she didn’t have to die.
I’m very interested to see where this revelation takes Tae-ho next — will he repent and admit to the world that he killed So-hee? Or will he decide to take revenge on CEO Jang, and turn all that anger and rage towards killing him, because that line’s already been crossed and it’s too late for him to go back? Either way, his character just went from a one-note killing machine to multifaceted and layered, and I can’t wait to see what he does next.