Mysterious Il-seung: Episodes 9-10
Jong-sam has a lot on his plate, but that doesn’t stop anyone from piling on more problems. Every step forward seems to be followed with three steps back, but this pattern can’t go on forever. The only question is: Will Jong-sam finally gain his footing or will he fall even farther?
EPISODE 9 RECAP
We back up to just before Jong-sam’s fourth prison break to see that Ddakji had spotted Jong-sam when they’d passed each other. Hopping off the bus, Ddakji chases after him but by the time he arrives at the construction site, Jong-sam has already vanished. He spots the grate covering the passageway but before he can open it, the construction workers return.
Ddakji hides as one of the workers backs a truck over the grate, blocking Jong-sam’s exit. Hearing Jong-sam frantically rattle the grate, Ddakji alerts the driver that someone is trapped. Alarmed, the driver runs off to retrieve the keys as Jong-sam watches the guards closing in on him.
The driver moves the truck, clearing the grate, which Ddakji yanks open. Jong-sam is shocked to see him, but Ddakji just shouts to run. The guards who were on Jong-sam’s heels are suddenly called back since the construction site is full and they’ll be fired if they’re seen chasing an escapee.
Watch the scene
Best friend to the rescue!
Jong-sam and Ddakji catch their breaths at the edge of the lake and Ddakji exclaims that he’d almost died of worry. Laughing, Jong-sam playfully squishes Ddakji’s face, but they grow serious when they realize no one is chasing them.
Back at the prison, an unconscious Baek Kyung is loaded into an ambulance. The head guard decides they’ll lie that Baek Kyung hurt himself in the workshop and orders the passageway sealed. When asked about the escaped inmate, the head guard snaps that all their prisoners are still there so as far as anyone’s concerned, nothing happened. They decide to dispose of the phone Jong-sam left behind.
With the bugged phone gone, the agents lose Jong-sam’s trail and decide to follow Baek Kyung instead, who turns out to be fine despite the serious-looking head injury. Agent Ki notes that the passageway will no longer be usable and Baek Kyung likely questioned. But Agent Kwak said he called the prison duty officer; Baek Kyung will be granted a stay of execution, ultimately freeing him from prison.
At the bus stop, Jong-sam vaguely explains his situation to Ddakji, avoiding details. Ddakji asks if what he’s doing is dangerous but Jong-sam assures him it’ll be over in a few days, then changes the subject to ask where he was headed.
They arrive at the place holding the supposed remains of Jong-sam (aka Il-seung). Ddakji explains to the clerk that while they’re not blood-related, he’s the only family Jong-sam has. Passing over the paperwork, she warns him they’ll have to wait for the body to be cremated.
Jong-sam suddenly has an idea, and pays to keep Il-seung’s body in storage for a month. When Ddakji asks why, he explains that if they let the body be destroyed, there’ll be no evidence of Il-seung’s murder.
Jong-sam asks what Ddakji was doing at the prison, and Ddakji says he just wanted to see Jong-sam. Scoffing, Jong-sam wonders why he’d come back after being released, but Ddakji sadly replies that he had nowhere else to go.
Meanwhile, Jin-young meets with Ddakji’s sister, Eun-bi, who wants to know why Gil-choon targeted her. Jin-young notes that he seemed to know her, but Eun-bi can’t imagine how. Jin-young points out that it wouldn’t have been recent since Gil-choon was locked up for the past six months, and when she hears the name of the prison, Eun-bi says that her brother was just released from the same place.
At the station, Jin-young tries to work out how everything’s related while the other detectives indulge in some PPL pizza. She asks Detective Park to approve her request for Ddakji’s picture from the prison, explaining that he’s the victim’s brother.
At the hospital, Jong-sam has to literally drag Ddakji to see Eun-bi, because Ddakji is too embarrassed to face his sister. He admits that he feels like everyone can tell he’s just been released from prison. Jong-sam understands the feeling, but asks how Ddakji would feel if he avoided seeing him just because he’d been to jail.
Ddakji retorts that it’s different between them, and Jong-sam agrees—it’s worse because Eun-bi’s his sister. Grabbing Ddakji from behind, Jong-sam shuffles him over to the door and knocks. He promises to come back tomorrow and tells Ddakji to leave a note at the nurse’s station before going anywhere. Then, before Ddakji can reply, Jong-sam shoves him into Eun-bi’s room.
Nervously, Ddakji approaches Eun-bi, but turns away when she doesn’t recognize him. But then she tentatively calls out, “Oppa?” and he stops in his tracks. They stare at each other with teary eyes and Ddakji says he won’t play with her if she cries. With a laugh, she says he really is her brother and they flashback to Eun-bi’s adoption day.
She’d cried as her new family tried to load her into their car, and Ddakji had come out with a basket of toys. He’d warned that he wouldn’t play with her if she cried and she’d stopped immediately. Eun-bi had reached for the watermelon toy but Ddakji had promised to play with her the next time they met. In response, she’d split the watermelon toy in half and said to keep it with him so she could recognize him when they were older.
In the present, Ddakji holds out his watermelon half and Eun-bi pulls the matching piece from her pocket. Sticking them back together, she suggests they stay together from now on. They embrace while a smiling Jong-sam watches from the hall.
Agent Kwak reports to Chairwoman Gook that Jong-sam returned to prison to fetch Il-seung’s ID. He suggests she report it to Director Lee, but she snaps that they’d disobeyed by following Jong-sam and don’t even know why he took the ID. She tells him to continue tailing Jong-sam and retrieve whatever he finds.
Before he leaves, Chairwoman Gook tells Agent Kwak to write his resignation letter in light of all his recent failures. Dropping to his knees, Agent Kwak begs for a second chance and she promises to return the letter if he brings her something important.
Jong-sam finds Detective Kang sleeping on the floor of Il-seung’s apartment and asks for his cell phone. Detective Kang watches as Jong-sam cuts the black chip away from Il-seung’s ID badge to reveal an SD card hidden beneath. Sliding it into Detective Kang’s phone, they watch as a video pops up onscreen: footage from Director Lee’s office showing him receiving a box of money from Chairwoman Gook.
Detective Kang compliments Il-seung’s skill at getting this evidence, but Jong-sam grumbles that it doesn’t help them find the money now. He’s about to shut it off, but an additional recording starts to play, in which Il-seung asks the listener to hand the evidence over to Prosecutor Kim. He explains that his phone was tapped so he had to run away, adding that he hid the money where he and Prosecutor Kim first met. Jong-sam notes it’s a good thing he’d lost the tapped phone, although it means Director Lee knows Jong-sam took the ID.
Jong-sam listens to the voice recording repeatedly to pick up the background noise, but can’t decipher it. Detective Kang asks why Jong-sam stole Il-seung’s corpse and Jong-sam clarifies that it just happened to be in the car that he stole. When asked why he moved the body rather than handing it over to the Men in Black, Jong-sam sighs that he just felt sorry for Il-seung.
Detective Kang suggests they have professionals analyze the recording, but Jong-sam points out that it could get stolen. He announces his plans to hand the money over to Director Lee and warns Detective Kang not to get any ideas.
Jong-sam wonders at the machine sounds in the clip and Detective Kang guesses that it was recorded near a highway. Jong-sam points out that the level of noise indicates very large trucks… and realizes it must’ve been a truck terminal. The men race off to find the money.
The Men in Black watch them leave, and Agent Ki stays behind to search the apartment while Agent Kwak tails Jong-sam. Agent Ki reports the mutilated ID badge and Agent Kwak figures out it must’ve contained the SD card for the hidden camera in Director Lee’s office.
Jong-sam and Detective Kang scour the terminal for the truck Il-seung stole. Jong-sam thinks Il-seung changed the plate, but they spot the truck nearby and Detective Kang explains that Il-seung avoided detection by spraying reflective paint over the plate—making it impossible to capture on street cameras.
Swinging the doors open, the men laugh as they see stacks of boxes, just before spotting the ex-NIS agents barreling towards them. They quickly shut the doors and break into the truck, where Detective Kang hotwires the ignition. They speed off, and the agents scamper back to their car while a second truck follows in close pursuit.
Jong-sam notices the second truck just before it slams into their back end, sending them spinning. The other truck barrels into the side of theirs and knocks it on its side, spilling the cargo onto the street. The window rolls down to reveal Baek Kyung.
Detective Kang crawls out of the cab and has to help Jong-sam do the same. They limp over to the boxes and discover only copy paper as the agents walk over and smugly point out the lack of money. Jong-sam swiftly tosses the phone with the evidence into the back of the truck and snaps at the agents that he’d promised to hand over the money and they’d nearly killed him. Agent Kwak quips that he didn’t find the money, though.
At the police station, Jin-young looks into the interrogation room, where killer Gil-choon is sound asleep. Detective Park says their best chance at making Gil-choon crack is to lost interest so he thinks they’re on to something, and orders everyone to ignore Gil-choon until he says otherwise.
The forensics officer arrives and reports that the body they’d recovered was definitely the cook who’d worked with Gil-choon. The autopsy revealed she’d drowned and Gil-choon’s DNA was on her clothes. Unfortunately, the rest of the victims’ autopsies were inconclusive.
However, they also analyzed the voice recording from Eun-bi’s kidnapping report, and it didn’t belong to Gil-choon. Checking the CCTV footage from that day, they all gasp when they see Jong-sam step up to the phone.
Meanwhile, Agent Kwak is beating the snot out of Jong-sam. Already lying bloody on the ground, Detective Kang pleads with him to stop before he kills Jong-sam. Agent Kwak complies but demands that Jong-sam hand over the evidence, saying that he can’t trust Jong-sam now that he’s working with Detective Kang.
Agent Kwak reveals that Detective Kang had been hounding Director Lee ten years ago, which is why Agent Kwak had been sent to beat him up and drop him on a ship. And when someone stows away a ship without money or a passport, they’re forced to work like a slave until the debt is paid.
Agent Ki finds the phone Jong-sam had tossed aside, and Agent Kwak scoffs that the device isn’t even locked. They confirm the footage, then extract the SD card. Jong-sam seizes the opportunity and snatches the card, throwing it into the tall grass on the side of the road, forcing Agent Ki to run after it.
Unperturbed, Agent Kwak tells Detective Kang to accompany him to see Director Lee, then warns Jong-sam to find the money before tomorrow’s deadline. He smirks that if Director Lee finds out about Jong-sam working with Detective Kang, he’d be killed instantly.
When Agent Kwak turns to walk away, Jong-sam leaps up and knocks him out with one of the boxes. Quickly finding the car keys in his pocket, Jong-sam tosses them to Detective Kang and they make for the car.
EPISODE 10 RECAP
Arriving back at the truck terminal, Jong-sam and Detective Kang switch back to their own car. Jong-sam winces at his injured arm and Detective Kang snaps that he should’ve avoided the beating by just handing over the SD card. Jong-sam pulls the card out of his pocket and says it would be pointless if the agents found the money first.
Sighing, Detective Kang wonders how he can still talk about money when he nearly died. Jong-sam declares that he didn’t die and that he’s doing this in order to stay alive. Detective Kang points out that the agents could still kill him after he hands over the money, and asks what his plans are. Jong-sam answers that he has to meet “him.”
In his office, Prosecutor Kim answers a call, and we see that the caller is Jong-sam, using his dollar bill trick on a payphone. He tells Prosecutor Kim the money is hidden in the place he first met Il-seung. After he hangs up, Detective Kang urges Jong-sam to flee to safety, saying that he put a passport and money in the fridge for him.
Jong-sam refuses, pointing out that Director Lee will always be chasing him, which is no different from prison, and Jong-sam just wants to live a normal life. Their conversation ends when they see Prosecutor Kim exit the building and they quickly follow him.
They stop in a parking garage and Detective Kim tries again to convince Jong-sam to give up, worrying that he’ll get caught by Prosecutor Kim. Jong-sam assures him that he’ll be fine and slides out.
Inside the building, Jong-sam spies Prosecutor Kim opening a door and then peeking around the room before walking away with a confused look. Once Prosecutor Kim’s gone, Jong-sam deftly picks the lock and slips inside… to find an empty room.
The door opens again, and Prosecutor Kim asks what he’s doing here. Meanwhile, the NIS agents receive a tip and run to their car.
Prosecutor Kim chides Jong-sam for taking him for a fool. He says that he’d wanted to investigate Jong-sam but didn’t have a reason—until now. Prosecutor Kim starts to report Jong-sam for breaking and entering but stops short when Jong-sam announces he has the evidence and holds up the SD card.
Prosecutor Kim is still suspicious, so Jong-sam suggests he check for the money himself. Prosecutor Kim says that he already has—this room is where he and Il-seung first met.
Realizing he’s in a bind, Jong-sam tries to run, but Prosecutor Kim manages to block him. In their struggle, they knock over a cabinet and Jong-sam spots some familiar boxes. He points them out to Prosecutor Kim, and closer inspection reveals (finally!) the money. And while Prosecutor Kim explains the currency, Jong-sam grabs a bottle and smashes it over his head.
Watch the scene
Hundred biiiiiillion won… finally!
Chairwoman Gook reports the hidden cameras and SD card to Director Lee. He cuts her off and tells her to just leave the card, but she admits they don’t have it. Instead, she tries to reveal Detective Kang’s involvement with Jong-sam, but Director Lee already knows. She asks how she should handle the situation, but Lawyer Ahn is already taking care of it.
Meanwhile, Detective Kang manages to avoid the ex-NIS agents when they arrive at the parking garage, but runs into Lawyer Ahn instead.
Prosecutor Kim—now strapped to a chair with duct tape—watches as Jong-sam tosses the money into a sack. He realizes Jong-sam plans to hand the money over to Director Lee and barks that Director Lee will only use the money to kill more people. His words give Jong-sam pause, and he continues that Director Lee keeps his power by using people that do his dirty work in order to save themselves.
Jong-sam snaps that Prosecutor Kim should’ve done his job, then, and that Director Lee also received help from powerful people. Agreeing, Prosecutor Kim points out that the weak people are dispensable. Jong-sam picks up the broken bottle and Prosecutor Kim tenses, but Jong-sam only places it in the prosecutor’s hands and apologizes for hitting him.
Prosecutor Kim screams after him, “Don’t you feel bad for Il-seung?” He says Il-seung was a good man who couldn’t turn a blind eye to his superiors’ wrongdoing.
Unfortunately, Jong-sam is spotted by the former NIS agents as he leaves, and they give chase. Eventually, they corner him on the roof and Agent Kwak tells Jong-sam to hand over the money, saying that Director Lee already knows he found it. So Jong-sam pulls out his cut and throws the bag over.
Agent Ki confirms it’s the missing money and Agent Kwak calls for Baek Kyung to finish off Jong-sam, on Director Lee’s orders. Meanwhile, Lawyer Ahn brings Detective Kang to meet Director Lee.
Jong-sam tells the agents he expected this and scoffs that they think he’s stupid. He points out that they haven’t found the SD card yet and reveals that he never actually threw it away. He tells them that he’s arranged for it to be sent to Prosecutor Kim should he die.
Agent Kwak makes a call but to everyone’s surprise, Director Lee says he doesn’t need the card… because Detective Kang has already given it to him. A brief flashback shows that when he’d grabbed onto Jong-sam in the parking garage, he’d actually swiped the SD card and Jong-sam had picked up a decoy sitting on the console.
Lawyer Ahn verifies that it’s real and Detective Kang assures everyone that there are no copies. Director Lee snaps the card in half and welcomes Detective Kang back, introducing him to Chairwoman Lee as the Macau asset manager. Um, what?!
The agents hang Jong-sam over the side of the roof and Agent Kwak reveals that Detective Kang had actually been working for Director Lee for a long time. He admits they hadn’t known, either, or else they wouldn’t have beaten him up.
Agent Kwak pulls out the suicide note they’ve fabricated for Il-seung and clocks the conflicted expression on Agent Ki’s face. He has Ki get the bag while he and Baek Kyung finish the job—but before they can, Prosecutor Kim arrives to announce the police are on their way.
Baek Kyung flies at Prosecutor Kim and the money bag gets tossed in the process. Jong-sam breaks free and snatches up the bag, then catapults himself onto the lower level’s roof and escapes.
Back in Il-seung’s apartment, Jong-sam dumps the money into a duffel bag and remembers Detective Kang had mentioned leaving him a passport and some money. He finds it in the freezer, and after checking his new identity, he stuffs the passport in his pocket.
Meanwhile, the detectives compare two pictures of Jong-sam: one shows him reporting Eun-bi’s kidnapping, and the other is with Gil-choon after she’d been rescued. The guys think that the two are clearly accomplices, but Jin-young suddenly remembers the man she’d fought off in the bathroom.
Now she recognizes him as Jong-sam and realizes that he’d been trying to protect Eun-bi, not attack her. The question now is how he knew Eun-bi was being targeted. When Min-pyo thinks it’s as if he and Gil-choon were cellmates, Jin-young perks up. Detective Park tells his team to bring him in for questioning.
Jin-young interrogates Gil-choon, who confirms that it’s Jong-sam in the photo. He’s positive since he heard him use Jong-sam and Ddakji’s catchphrase.
Meanwhile, Jong-sam wraps some of the cash separately before meeting Ddakji, who sees the duffel bag and wonders if Jong-sam’s going somewhere. Jong-sam deflects his questions by asking about Eun-bi and Ddakji proudly announces that she’s the third person to believe in their innocence.
Watch the scene
A goodbye gift
Jong-sam says he just dropped by to give Ddakji something and hands him the bag, telling him to open it when he’s alone and to buy himself some new clothes, since he always intended to do that upon Ddakji’s release. When he turns away, Jong-sam’s eyes are brimming with tears.
As he leaves, Jin-young watches from her car. She calls the prison to request a meeting with Jong-sam and is stunned when they inform her that he died.
Jong-sam speaks to someone over the payphone and asks if he can catch Director Lee with the money, knowing he’ll die if he fails. He tells the other person he’s hidden the money in a locker at the station, and we see Prosecutor Kim run out of his office and jump into a car.
As Jong-sam waits in line, a man stops beside him and says that he’s found Jong-sam. When Jong-sam looks up, he’s shocked to see Lawyer Ahn, who says that he’s grown a lot and asks if Jong-sam remembers him. In a flashback to the night Jong-sam was arrested for murder, we see that Lawyer Ahn was the prosecutor who beat the confession out of Ddakji and Jong-sam.
As Jong-sam stares at Lawyer Ahn in horror, Lawyer Ahn holds out his phone and Ddakji’s panicked voice floats up from the device. Looking down, Jong-sam see’s Ddakji bound and blindfolded, begging not to be killed as he calls out to Jong-sam.
Lawyer Ahn tells him that if he wants to save Ddakji, he needs to bring the money to the docks in two hours. Jong-sam readily agrees, and as soon as Lawyer Ahn is gone, he sprints back to the lockers and pulls out the bag of cash.
Just then, he hears someone call his real name, and Jin-young rips the bag out of his hands. She bites out her words as she demands, “Are you still stealing?”
Watch the scene
A last-minute complication
Argh!!! I knew that little cinnamon bun was too precious for this drama! All along, Ddakji has been the only real bargaining chip that could be used against Jong-sam, so when he decided to leave him behind, I had a feeling something like this would happen. Threatening Jong-sam’s life has very little impact so I’m not surprised Lawyer Ahn revisited his tried and true method of hurting the only person Jong-sam cherishes. Which is why I’m a bit surprised Jong-sam didn’t consider this possibility. Especially after Detective Kang’s betrayal, since he knew firsthand how tight that bond is.
Speaking of Detective Kang, that turnaround was brutal. I’ve always been on the fence about whether or not he was a good guy with a slightly shifty compass or a weasel. I was a bit suspicious of the whole trapped-on-a-boat story but this show is a fan of easy plot resolutions so I was willing to let it pass. This revelation is much more compelling but also so tragic when you consider that Detective Kang is just another adult that took advantage of a wayward youth. I was really getting on board with their little team, so I’m sad the party is over. That being said, I’m still not sure about Detective Kang’s motives. Is it possible that he’s playing an even deeper game? Or maybe he is on Director Lee’s side but has some genuine affection for the boy he took under his wing? I’d like to think so, anyway.
I still don’t know what Gil-choon has to do with the grand scheme of things. Surely he fits in somewhere because if not, I’m not sure why we’re keeping him around. Apparently he’s a serial killer, or at least intends to be but is he really responsible for all those other bodies they discovered or are they just more pieces in a grander puzzle? I hope so because while Gil-choon made for a creepy adversary, he seems to have served his purpose.
These episodes were very light on Jin-young. Honestly, she hardly seemed like the female lead when she probably had barely ten minutes of screen time, only to swoop in a drop a bomb at the end. I wish we had more insight into what she’s thinking because at this point, I have no clue. She clearly had affection for Jong-sam as a teenager but then he was arrested for murder. That can put a damper on a relationship, no doubt… But despite her initial suspicions that he was assisting a psycho, she discovered that Jong-sam had done his best to save Eun-bi so shouldn’t that count for something? I can understand being peeved about the whole fake identity thing, but the poor guy is an escaped convict… I just want to understand her. Maybe the next couple episodes will shed some more light on the matter.
Regardless, the show has finally decided to put our leads back into the same room so that’s certainly a plus. With the fake identity out of the way, they have a lot of issues to work out. Hopefully they can clear up some of those problems enough to work together because they’re sure to make a fearsome team and I’d like Ddakji back in one piece, please and thank you!
- Premiere Watch: Two Cops, Doubtful Victory
- Yoon Kyun-sang’s origin story revealed for Doubtful Victory
- Yoon Kyun-sang settles into prison life for Doubtful Victory
- Rooting for Yoon Kyun-sang’s Doubtful Victory and escape from prison
- Yoon Kyun-sang, Jung Hye-sung may be on the road to Doubtful Victory
- Six Flying Dragons PD returns with new thriller, but not with Yoon Kye-sang or Yoon Kyun-sang