Falsify: Episodes 11-12
Once our two heroes realize that they can’t win against their enemies by fighting alone, our core team of reporters and prosecutors begin to come together. Trust may be in short supply in the face of such great opposition, but the opportunity to finally get some answers might just convince our team to keep their personal grudges aside—for now, at least.
EPISODE 11 RECAP
Moo-young asks So-ra to prove her sincerity by working with him to unravel the false charges placed on Seon-woo. So-ra thinks it over, then orders Moo-young arrested. She apologizes for disappointing him five years ago, but says that she cannot ignore the crimes he’s committed in the present.
She argues that instead of harboring a convict, airing an underground broadcast, and trespassing into the prosecutor’s office, he should have lodged a formal complaint if he was dissatisfied with the work of the prosecutor’s office.
Moo-young asks if she thinks that everyone’s voice is equally heard by the system. He explains that just like there was a wall preventing him from coming to speak to her five years ago, Seon-woo’s protests also went unheard. He finally adds that throwing stones at the system is the only way to get justice in the world he lives in.
So-ra looks thoughtful after leaving the interrogation room and directs Paralegal Park to keep Moo-young locked up at a police station for the time being. Clearly baffled that his plan had gone awry, Moo-young threatens them with the wrath of Patriot News’ subscribers as he’s dragged out of the building.
So-ra reaches her office to find Prosecutor Im questioning the staff about the broken glass caused by her breaking in during Moo-young’s interrogation of Seon-woo’s friend, Tae-joon. So-ra takes a deep breath and enters the room to face her irate boss. He proceeds to make passive-aggressive remarks about her work until she tells him that Tae-joon confessed to perjury.
He suddenly gets friendly and suggests that they should close Seon-woo’s case, since the convict committed suicide. So-ra points out that Seon-woo’s body hadn’t been found, and by law, she is bound to continue her investigation into the case and into Prosecutor Im’s connection to Daehan Daily.
Registering So-ra’s determination, her boss reminds her that her father was a labor union leader who was accused of taking bribes. So-ra feels the hit but says that she has nothing to be ashamed of, since the accusations were proven false long ago.
Prosecutor Im says with a sly smile that regardless of the truth, he can ruin her reputation in their field. His threat clearly rattles her, and when he leaves after telling her to shut the case, So-ra looks near tears with frustration.
Chief Yang and the Patriot News Team hide behind a wall near the Prosecutors’ Office, worrying about Moo-young’s fate. When he’s brought out in handcuffs, Na-rae runs out from their hiding pace, calling out to Moo-young.
As he’s shoved into the prosecutors’ van, Moo-young tells Na-re and Chief Yang that Seon-woo’s friend changed his testimony and that Noah Law Firm is clearly behind this. Paralegal Park repeats Moo-young’s words to them, even as he shoves Moo-young back into the van, before wondering why he’s helping these people. Ha.
Chief Yang puts his team on Tae-joon to make sure he doesn’t change his mind about testifying against Noah. Then, Seok-min calls Chief Yang and finds out about Moo-young’s arrest.
Moo-young leans against the wall in his cell and thinks about Seon-woo’s pleas in his last call to him: “I didn’t do it.” Then, he flashes back to the moment on the bridge when Seon-woo began to fall before his eyes.
So-ra parks her car across the street from her father’s vegetable shop and watches him clean the steps and rearrange the products. She smiles at his diligence, then thinks back to her meeting with Seok-min.
When he asked her if she would still be unafraid to face off against a powerful opponent, So-ra had laughed. She’s pointed out that if she gave up after failing once, she could hardly call herself a prosecutor. Seok-min had thanked her for remaining the person he remembered her to be, and they’d shaken hands.
In the present, she starts the car and drives away as her hard-working father takes care of his shop.
The Patriot News Team finds Tae-joon and escorts him away in their van. Prosecutor Im loses no time in reporting Tae-joon’s confession and disappearance to Chief Gu, who sighs at his incompetence.
Chief Gu meets Lawyer Jo, who shows him a picture of Chief Yang taking Tae-joon away. Chief Gu gripes at him and says that he can’t stop Patriot News from publishing the news of Tae-joon’s perjury.
Lawyer Jo tells the chief that while their “elders” haven’t found out about this situation yet, they have to change the narrative before this goes much further. He takes out some papers, and the two quietly hatch a plan.
Seok-min meets So-ra and explains that Moo-young visited her office at his behest. She assumes that Seok-min wants her to show leniency towards Moo-young, but Seok-min tells her that that isn’t his intent.
He reminds her of Chairman Min’s case five years ago, and tells her that the proof of his dementia was fabricated. Seok-min explains that all he has are suspicions, but he has a strong hunch that Seon-woo and Chairman Min’s cases were manipulated by the same puppeteer. He asks So-ra to use Moo-young to unmask the man behind the curtain.
The next day, Chief Yang paces as rookie reporter Sang-ho edits Tae-joon’s confession video. The chief of Patriot News is nearly bursting with impatience, wanting the world to know that they were right.
So-ra deliberates over signing off on the final report on Seon-woo’s case, denying his right to a second hearing. As she sits at her desk, Paralegal Park comes over and politely gives her some advice. He tells her to just stamp the paper, since she needs to think about her future. Unless she plans on quitting after this case, he says, there is no other way for her to survive in this place.
So-ra considers it, then takes a file to Prosecutor Im’s room. He’s very pleased with So-ra’s compliance until he opens the file and finds his own name staring back at him from a complaint about bilateral obstruction of justice.
As he stutters, So-ra makes it clear that if he ever tries to force her to shut a case, she’ll use this complaint to malign his name in the field. Then, while Prosecutor Im tries to find the words to scream at her, So-ra walks out and keeps walking as his threats echo in the hallway behind her.
Predictably, Patriot News’ interview with Tae-joon gets a lot of views on their website. Chief Gu directs Editor Jung to start their counterattack on Patriot News.
So-ra goes to visit Moo-young at the police station, but before she can tell him what’s on her mind, the overhead TV announces a new development in Seon-woo’s case. Daehan Daily claims that they have acquired Seon-woo’s last will, which states that he committed suicide because he was scared of Patriot News.
Watching this from his cubicle, Seok-min starts laughing at the sheer gall of “these jerks.”
In a flashback, we see the plan Chief Gu and Lawyer Jo had hatched. Seon-woo’s belongings had been sent to his lawyer after his escape, and hidden among them was a will he’d written before he’d tried to commit suicide by swallowing a blade.
In the note he’d written was “They made me do it,” referring to the convicts who terrorized him inside. Lawyer Jo explains that they can use this letter to sway public opinion in their favor. Laughing with delight at the lawyer’s plan, Chief Gu had added one word to Seon-woo’s will: Patriot News. Now, the will blamed Patriot News for Seon-woo’s death.
As So-ra watches the news, she asks if Seon-woo really left a will behind. Sitting behind his desk, Chief Gu gloats: “This is war. It’s a fight to see who will succeed in making the public turn their back on the opponent.” He orders someone to make sure that the people at Patriot News can never call themselves journalists any more.
In his cubicle, Seok-min reads the article on Daehan Daily’s webpage and notes that it was written by Reporter Na. The man in question pauses before entering the press room as he thinks back to the night before., and we flash back to see Reporter Na standing before Chief Gu as he gave the order to destroy Patriot News.
Reporter Na had asked if they shouldn’t wait to verify the will before writing such an article, but Chief Gu had threatened and cajoled him into writing the piece anyway. In the present, Reporter Na nods as if reassuring himself that he did the right thing before entering the room.
He’s greeted with congratulations from his colleagues on his article, and his face changes from stressed to pleased. Seok-min watches this display from afar and mutters: “Why does it have to be you again?”
At the police station, So-ra asks Moo-young if the news report was true. Instead of answering her, he asks why she’s there.
So-ra refuses to talk about it until she hears his explanation, but this just makes Moo-young scoff and walk away.
So-ra calls after him, and Moo-young comes back to explain to her how things work in his world. He tells her that since Patriot News is trying to dig up something Daehan Daily would prefer to stay covered, they’ll use every trick in the book to discredit him and his team.
He asks her that if she’ll doubt him every time they come up with something new. “I don’t want to repeat myself over and over again, so if you can’t trust me, then let’s stop here,” he tells So-ra.
EPISODE 12 RECAP
At the end of Moo-young’s impressive speech, So-ra turns and walks out of the waiting room. Moo-young remembers that they have bigger fish to fry and begins to call after her, when she returns and says that they can continue their conversation once he’s been released.
She adds that she wants to find out what is happening so badly that she’s decided to put off doubting him until this case is solved. Moo-young is agreeable to her choice of words. “Doubts are better put off,” he repeats to himself. Then, looking at the TV, he wonders what’s going on with his teammates.
Patriot News is currently under attack by a very loud and aggressive news anchor who seems determined to send them to jail for abetting suicide. As Chief Yang panics about their fate, Boss Yang walks towards their office with his underling.
Boss Yang curses Daehan Daily for being wily and explains to his minion that Moo-young would never force anyone to commit suicide. Suddenly, he stops and sniffs the air for a foul smell.
The Patriot News team is quietly packing up their belongings to make a silent escape, but a knock on the door freezes them in place. It’s Lieutenant Jeon, and he’s here to arrest the team on suspicions of abetting a suicide.
Moo-young finds out about the arrest on his way out of the police station. Seok-min warns him to stay alert and stick to their plan so that the police don’t catch him too.
Boss Yang and his underling watch from a hiding place as the Patriot News team is dragged away by the cops. The crime boss tells his minion to look into Lieutenant Jeon, wondering what kind of cop can get his hands on an arrest warrant so quickly.
On their way into the police van, the team is surrounded by reporters. Chief Yang declares their innocence, but is quickly shoved into the car. Lieutenant Jeon then looks into the cameras and tells Moo-young to give himself up voluntarily.
Watching this, Moo-young tries to stomp out, until So-ra reminds him that they have five days till the retrial and no time to waste.
Chief Gu convinces Daehan Daily’s executive board that the paper needs to revive the Splash Team. Later, Editor Jung asks him what he will do if the splash team really digs up something big, but Chief Gu just smiles smugly and assures the man that he has no intention of giving up control over the team.
Editor Jung suggests planting a mediator in the team, and the chief talks of a card they can throw away for this purpose, and by “card,” they mean Reporter Na. And so, Editor Jung calls Seok-min to his cabin and snidely observes that he barely has any applicants for his team. He orders Seok-min to include Reporter Na in the team, and Seok-min obliges grudgingly.
Meeting Chief Gu in the hallway, Seok-min wonders sarcastically why he’s giving the Splash Team his star reporter. Chief Gu tells him that Reporter Na will ensure that the team doesn’t make mistakes, because this time, any misstep will be punished with more than just a disbandment of the team.
Prosecutor Im strides into So-ra’s office only to find her absent from her desk. Paralegal Park comes running and tells him that an aggrieved plaintiff covered So-ra’s car in chicken poop and she’s gone to deal with that. Seeing that the chief prosecutor seems pleased by this, Paralegal Park asks if he can forgive So-ra’s behavior the day before in light of her present misery.
Paralegal Park confides that their team isn’t prepared for Seon-woo’s retrial at all, which makes Prosecutor Im wonder what makes So-ra so confident in her rebellion against him. But he seems to believe Paralegal Park and leaves without making much fuss.
After swearing about his loyalty to Prosecutor Im up and down, we see Paralegal Park landing at Moo-young’s terrace with the case files and telling So-ra that he can delay the chief prosecutor’s suspicions for a maximum of two days.
Paralegal Park pouts at his superior and asks what’ll happen to the next twenty years of his career, and So-ra grins sweetly at him and promises that they’re a package. Paralegal Park scoffs but gives in before executing a secret hand shake with So-ra, while Moo-young looks on.
Moo-young gives the two a rundown of how he learned about Seon-woo’s case. Paralegal Park realizes that when Seon-woo’s case went from the hands of a public defendant to Noah’s Lawyer Park, some evidence, like some CCTV footage submitted initially, disappeared from the list submitted at the first trial.
During their discussions, So-ra is uncomfortably aware of Moo-young’s proximity. Later, when she enters his apartment to look for a bathroom, he stops her from looking into his study and guides her out, saying that his bathroom is “out of order.” This piques So-ra’s interest.
When the new Splash Team’s personnel appointment list goes up, Intern KONG JI-WON is the only one who’s excited about her acceptance into the team. Report Na looks morosely at his appointment letter and thinks back to Chief Gu telling him to endure it for a while and report back to him.
Meanwhile, Yoo-kyung’s colleagues in the photography department watch her sadly as she packs her things to move to her new office. They ask if she can come back if the team disbands again, and Yoo-kyung confidently says yes. But then, it suddenly occurs to her that she has a child who needs to be sent to kindergarten and has a minor panic attack about her decision.
Before the Splash Team even moves in, Daehan Daily’s IT department sends someone to replace all the office computers. Seok-min watches the man suspiciously.
So-ra and Moo-young visit Seon-woo’s public defendant, who tells them that the CCTV footage was a personal recording that another client made while stalking a woman. Miffed at being suddenly replaced by a Noah lawyer, the public defendant hadn’t bothered to hand over the evidence to Lawyer Park.
Now, Paralegal Park investigates the stalker, and while the man in question has disappeared, the woman he stalked had recently complained that her mail was being stolen. They realize that the stalker is probably back to his old tricks.
Just as Seok-min suspected, the new computers are equipped with programs that allow Chief Gu to spy on their content at all time. In his office, Chief Gu gleefully clicks on the icon for Seok-min’s laptop, only to find someone playing solitaire on it. Ha.
In the Splash Team office, Yoo-kyung asks Seok-min if it’s really all right to play games on his laptop all day. Seok-min nods from his day bed as he reads up on Lieutenant Jeon’s decorated career in the past.
As So-ra and Moo-young sit in her car on a stakeout mission, she asks if he always gets this closely involved in his cases — aren’t reporters supposed to be objective?
Moo-young says that his brother was an unflinching reporter, and he wants to be the same kind of man so that he doesn’t have time to be scared of the consequences. So-ra observes that nothing he says makes sense, but he manages to persuade her anyway.
They finally spot the stalker entering the building of his victim and follow him in. As Moo-young calls out his name, the man makes a break for it. So-ra chases after him, until Moo-young catches up and passes her by. Moments later, So-ra outpaces him… and the race is on.
When they finally reach the man, he’s about to run off on a cycle, and So-ra pulls him off. Once they get him back to So-ra’s office, he tells her that he had installed a camera to watch the woman he was obsessed with in the apartment where the coast guard was murdered.
When So-ra asks if he still has the footage, he tells her that the detective in charge had dismissed the charges against him in exchange for the footage he had. Moo-young correctly guesses that the detective at the time was Lieutenant Jeon.
Seok-min talks to an old source in the police department and convinces him to tell him what happened to Lieutenant Jeon six years ago, after which he became a gangster in a cop’s uniform.
The source tells him that Jeon has earnestly pursued the son of a powerful man in a murder case, but the prosecutors had let the accused off. When that man had died in a hit-and-run case, Lieutenant Jeon had been the prime suspect.
Prosecutor Im had worked on both cases, and suspiciously, Jeon had been cleared of charges a bit too soon. Ever since then, Lieutenant Jeon and Prosecutor Im had turned from enemies to friends.
Seok-min realizes that the chief prosecutor must have had something damning on the lieutenant. So-ra texts him about Lieutenant Jeon hiding the CCTV evidence, and Seok-min sighs.
Back in his apartment, Moo-young examines his wall of articles and rearranges the one with Boss Park and Lawyer Jo in them. He tells his brother that although he’s reached this point, he doesn’t know what lies beyond it, as his eyes fall on the globe tattoo at the center of it all.
While I was anticipating a drawn-out conflict between So-ra and Moo-young, I think this grudging partnership works out better for our straight arrow prosecutor and wild card trash reporter. The trust between them is tentative at best, but their willingness to set aside their differences in pursuit of a common goal says a lot about how much the truth behind these anomalous cases matter to them.
The chemistry between the two is surprisingly potent as well. I liked that So-ra has enough childishness in her to turn the chase into a race with Moo-young. While she views him as a ticking bomb heading to his own destruction, I believe there is a part of her that understands the volatile emotions that drive Moo-young to make every case personal.
My favorite character so far is Seok-min, and I appreciate how quiet his investigations have been until now. He’s the one who knows Chief Gu best, and even though he appears to be the most cautious, he’s likely playing the riskiest game of all. Every time Seok-min demeans himself to further his plans for the Splash Team, I flinch, but actor Yoo Joon-sang imbues the character with such deep personal dignity that it’s impossible to pity the man. You know that he would never bend when it truly mattered, and you feel bad for the people who look down on him now.
It’s Seok-min who found Reporter Na’s slide into unscrupulous journalism irksome, and it’s Seok-min who noticed that a once-honest policeman suddenly started helping a dirty prosecutor after an inciting incident. I don’t know about Lieutenant Jeon, but I hope Seok-min can stop Reporter Na from walking down the path his ambitions have set him on. The young man seems to have some scruples left, anyway.
The best thing about this show is the balance of wins between the good guys and the bad guys. Our heroes make mistakes, fall in traps, and hobble each other, but they also manage to score points against the behemoth they’ve decided to take on. Which is why I enjoyed the moment when Chief Gu and his evil best buddy, Lawyer Jo, turned the tables on Moo-young and Patriot News. It’s important for our heroes to fall, so they can rise again on stronger footing.
There have likely been better dramas exploring the parasitical relationship between those in power and those with influence, but I like Falsify for the way it refuses to elevate our heroes to a pedestal and damn our villains to purgatory. As this show is teaching us, there is always another side to a story.
- Falsify: Episodes 1-2
- The news and the law come together for Falsify
- Righteous prosecutor and journalists challenge the corrupt in Falsify’s first teaser
- SBS’s Falsify finds its female lead in Eom Ji-won
- Two more actresses decline SBS’s Falsify, show still without leading lady
- Search for Falsify’s female lead narrows in on Kim Ok-bin
- Namgoong Min offered spot on Jeon Hye-bin’s Falsify team
- Jeon Hye-bin up to join SBS’s Falsify as photojournalist
- Chun Woo-hee, Yoo Joon-sang consider new SBS legal thriller Falsify