Alice: Episode 6
As our professor gets closer to figuring out the mechanics behind the Time Card, things become more dangerous for all those involved. An old case is dug up but it brings more questions than answers – answers that can only be provided by a suspect that our hero has been seeing a lot of lately.
EPISODE 6 RECAP
“Look not mournfully into the past. It comes not back again. Wisely improve the present. It is thine. Go forth to meet the shadowy future, without fear.” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Jin-gyum asks Se-hoon about the Book of Prophecy. The prisoner drawls that it’s the end of time travel, but admits that he doesn’t know more than that since Teacher told him not to peek inside.
Jin-gyum learns that his mother visited Se-hoon in 2010 to ask about Teacher’s identity. Se-hoon told her that she wouldn’t be able to find them anyway, since Teacher’s age and gender are unknown. Tae-yi was searching for Teacher because of Jin-gyum.
Outside the prison, Do-yeon waits by the car. She sighs a breath of relief to learn that Se-hoon isn’t Jin-gyum’s father. Together, they head to the precinct responsible for Se-hoon’s arrest. Jin-gyum pulls out Dr. Jang’s case files with a hunch that it relates back to Mom somehow. A suspect was caught on CCTV, and Jin-gyum recognizes that it’s Min-hyuk.
The lieutenant returns to the station and Dong-ho is puzzled to see the man they fought in such an old photo. Jin-gyum’s sure that his arrest will solve the Hong-seob case, Eun-soo’s kidnapping, Ki-hoon’s murder, and perhaps his mother’s as well.
The Alice agents have been keeping tabs on Jin-gyum. They wonder if someone is providing him with information, since very few people know about the 1992 case. Cheol-am suggests that it could be Tae-yi. While Min-hyuk stays silent, Shi-young says with conviction, “There’s no reason Tae-yi would betray us,” so they decide to continue monitoring Jin-gyum for now.
Tae-yi’s fast asleep at work and opens her eyes to see Jin-gyum staring. She plays it cool as if the nap were only ten minutes long, but HAHA, he’s been standing there for exactly an hour and 25 minutes. He dismisses her embarrassment to ask about the card, but Tae-yi sends him on a snack run first.
Jin-gyum sets off to the bakery with vague instructions. (Tae-yi: “I like all bread, except the ones I dislike.”) He grabs random ones at first, but reconsiders and picks what seems to be his mom’s favorites. Tae-yi finds it fascinating that he managed to pick out buns that she likes.
Having signed a confidentiality agreement before leaving Kuiper as a researcher, Tae-yi gets Jin-gyum to promise that everything discussed here is kept a secret. She launches into an explanation about how time travel has been proven to be impossible unless negative energy exists.
Our cop doesn’t quite follow so Tae-yi mutters, “How could you not know what that is?” Heh, he’s definitely embarrassed. Simply put, negative energy moves in the opposite direction from applied force. Tae-yi’s research topic was using negative energy to open up a wormhole, and the program found in the card is similar to the code she wrote.
The one who recruited her for the research team was Oh-won, who approached her the same day the blood moon appeared in 2010. Jin-gyum remembers that Oh-won showed up at his place that night. Apologizing for being unable to keep this conversation a secret, Jin-gyum heads out.
He meets Oh-won in a dimly lit cathedral. Getting straight to the point, Jin-gyum demands to know how his research was related to Mom’s death. Although Oh-won can’t go into details yet, he admits that Jin-gyum’s important to him. He claims the truth is hard to believe – it took him a while too, ten years ago.
Oh-won suggests looking into a case involving Schrödinger’s Cat (a thought experiment often described as a paradox). Tired of putting up with him, Jin-gyum grabs Oh-won by the collar. Tae-yi runs in to witness Jin-gyum warning Oh-won that the slightest suspicious action will lead to his arrest. She apologizes to the director before following Jin-gyum out.
The pair end up at the bar where Jin-gyum shares that he became an officer to catch the killer and investigated the case for ten years. As he digs deeper, he realizes that he didn’t really know his mother. Tae-yi’s determined to figure out the Time Card and urges him to cheer up.
The ride home is quite silent and Tae-yi learns that Jin-gyum doesn’t listen to music. She rummages through her bag and pulls out a USB filled with songs. He declines at first, but Tae-yi claims that music is tied to emotions so he allows her to press play.
The next day, Dong-ho reports that Se-hoon’s legs were fine up until his arrest. By then, his foot was cut off and strangely, fully healed. The partners meet with the retired detective who was in charge of his case.
The detective remembers Se-hoon clearly because it was odd how his fingerprints weren’t in the database. Since Se-hoon refused to speak, they attempted to chase down who they believed to be his accomplices. He confirms that Min-hyuk was one of them, and Jin-gyum’s surprised to learn that there was a female as well.
Jin-gyum brings coffee to Do-yeon’s office, and she loves how nice he’s being. He asks her to dig up more information on the case involving Se-hoon, as well as ones with patterns similar to Schrödinger’s Cat. She agrees, but at the price of lunch.
Do-yeon’s confused to hear music blasting through his speakers, bristling when she learns that it’s because of Tae-yi. Do-yeon doesn’t like that he’s still seeing her even if it’s for a favor and grabs the USB to return it.
She shows up at the professor’s office with two questions: what favor did Jin-gyum ask for, and why did she give him the USB? They’re both quite snarky with one another, to the point where even Tae-yi finds it ridiculous and asks if they’re shooting a morning drama, pfft.
Tae-yi tosses her work aside and makes it known that she’s not interested in Jin-gyum and quite frankly, doesn’t know what Do-yeon sees in him. Do-yeon lies that Jin-gyum’s different and super sweet when they’re alone.
The systems at the Alice building flash red – Jin-gyum’s Time Card sent a signal from the university. Min-hyuk tells Shi-young to send the drone and heads onto campus. He passes Do-yeon, who recognizes him as the suspect from the case files and alerts Jin-gyum immediately.
As per usual, the lights go off, signalling the presence of the Alice agents. Tae-yi looks out the window and the drone captures her face very clearly. In the control room, Shi-young is gasps at the sight of Tae-yi.
Tae-yi grabs the card and tries to leave, only to drop it when Min-hyuk barges in with his gun pointed at her. Faced with a version of the woman he loved, Min-hyuk loses his will to fight and just picks up the Time Card. However, Jin-gyum flies into the office throwing punches.
Jin-gyum won’t let Min-hyuk go unless he returns the card, and Min-hyuk is very conscious of Tae-yi’s scared reaction the entire time. Jin-gyum gains the upper hand with his gun pointed at the Alice agent and urges Tae-yi to leave the room. However, Seung-pyo was waiting outside and holds her hostage.
Safety comes first, so Jin-gyum makes the decision to drop his weapon and hand over the Time Card. Looking at the frightened Tae-yi, Min-hyuk surprises Seung-pyo by simply leaving. Tae-yi’s legs give out, but Jin-gyum catches her fall and holds her.
Min-hyuk’s lost in thought about the Tae-yi that left to protect their child. After she’d gone, Min-hyuk had searched for her with no success. She had taken the Book of Prophecy with her so he lied to Shi-young that Se-hoon still had the book. Shi-young sent him back and stayed behind to search for her friend.
Jin-gyum drops Tae-yi off at home. Although he’s sure that they won’t be coming after her anymore, he says to call him if she ever sees anything strange again. She’s worried because the card got stolen because of her. In typical Jin-gyum fashion, he says, “To be honest that’s true, but that’s okay.” Despite his bluntness, Tae-yi feels strangely comfortable around him.
Tae-yi thanks Jin-gyum and bids him farewell, but he can tell that she’s scared to be home alone. When she invites him inside for dinner, he surprisingly accepts the offer. Ha, her house is such a mess. Although Jin-gyum seemed doubtful of her spaghetti at first, he says that she’s a great cook, just like his mom.
Jin-gyum asks if she knew Min-hyuk since it seemed like he recognized her. She doesn’t, so Jin-gyum tells her to stay away from all the time travel research so that she doesn’t get targeted. He admits that he’s worried about her, which kickstarts a conversation about his Alexithymia.
Tae-yi had read that people who lack emotions aren’t aware when they like someone. If someone likes him, can he tell? Jin-gyum: “I’m not that dense.” He asks why she’s asking, but the question itself proves to her that he’s dense.
Cut to: Do-yeon sitting at Jin-gyum’s work desk with her fists balled up in fury because he won’t answer her calls. Captain Go sees this and laughs to hear that Jin-gyum’s with another girl, but is concerned that it’s Tae-yi.
Tae-yi goes for drinks with her sunbae from the lab, Seo-jin. Frustrated, she accidentally lets slip that Jin-gyum has Alexithymia and covers it up by lying that he has Aspernia (problems producing semen) instead. It makes Seo-jin wonder how far they’ve gotten…ew, let’s not go there.
Conversation shifts to the Time Card, which Tae-yi has some concerns about. She’d made a copy of the program without Jin-gyum knowing, and gives it to Seo-jin to look at.
Naturally, Alice agents already know about the copy. Min-hyuk asks Shi-young not to report it to the higher ups, offering to take care of it himself. She sternly reminds him that the professor is merely someone from the past, and not the Tae-yi that was his girlfriend.
Alice was created in a parallel universe, meaning that people from here are from a different dimension. Not only are Tae-yi’s age and background different, her personality could be as well. Shi-young tells Min-hyuk to forget about her. He maintains that it’s strictly business – he’ll take responsibility for the Time Card.
Looking over Dr. Jang’s case files, Jin-gyum learns from Dong-ho that the daughter was sent to live with extended family after the incident. Jin-gyum receives a formally-addressed text from Do-yeon that tells him there are no murders related to Schrödinger’s Cat. He’s pretty sure she’s mad at him, but unintentionally fuels the anger by addressing her formally too, pfft.
Min-hyuk approaches Tae-yi at the park during her morning run. She shakenly calls Jin-gyum but drops her phone, unable to answer when he picks up. Min-hyuk tosses his gun into the pond to show that he just wants to talk. He warns the professor to erase the copy of the Time Card and to avoid being around Jin-gyum since it puts her in danger. Meanwhile, Jin-gyum gets someone to track Tae-yi’s phone.
Tae-yi finds Min-hyuk familiar somehow, and asks if they’ve met before. He denies the possibility and apologizes for scaring her before he leaves. Min-hyuk finds Dong-ho waiting for him by the park exit, and Jin-gyum runs around the park until he spots Tae-yi.
Min-hyuk takes on Dong-ho with ease; the sergeant is unable to land a single blow. However, when Tae-yi and Jin-gyum arrive, Min-hyuk is conscious of his actions. He doesn’t put up much of a fight when Jin-gyum comes at him and gets brought to the station for questioning.
Jin-gyum wants to know what happened in 1992, and why they’re here now. Min-hyuk asks, “Have you ever lost someone you loved? It’s an experience as painful as death.” He explains that time traveling can free a person from that pain, and they’re people who help these travelers heal.
“Does killing others heal your suffering?” Jin-gyum presses. Min-hyuk knows that Jin-gyum sees them as criminals, but says that he’s just protecting his people like Jin-gyum is. “I don’t protect murderers,” Jin-gyum counters. But Min-hyuk’s sure that he’d do the same thing in his shoes. Do-yeon’s at the precinct again and learns from Dong-ho that Min-hyuk’s fingerprints aren’t in the system.
Meanwhile, a man is at a library studying quantum mechanics and physics. Another strange man sporting a beard bumps into him on purpose and helps him pick up his book.
Tae-yi waits outside for an update from Jin-gyum. She confesses that she made a copy of the Time Card, which is why Min-hyuk came to talk to her. She gave it to Seo-jin but isn’t able to reach her, and Jin-gyum suspects that she’s possibly in danger. He spots her photo on her messenger app – it’s Schrödinger’s cat.
In his dark reading room, Oh-won reads the Book of Prophecy which shows images of Schrödinger’s cat dead, having been poisoned in a box. The bearded man breaks into an apartment and smirks at the white cat that lives in the house.
Tae-yi leads Jin-gyum to her sunbae’s apartment. She’s shocked to see that the place was broken into, and Jin-gyum tells her to stay outside. When he gets inside, he spots a dead cat. Oh, no. In the middle of the living room is a huge wooden box. He lifts the lid and finds Seo-jin lying inside, bloody and dead. He shuts the box when Tae-yi walks in.
She tries to open the box and struggles against him restraining her, until he asks her to not look at it. When he looks outside the window, he makes eye contact with the suspicious man with the beard.
The man isn’t from Alice, as Cheol-am and Shi-young aren’t sure who he is. Cheol-am wants Min-hyuk to look into it since it’s his specialty, but he’s still locked up at the station. Jin-gyum approaches Min-hyuk and asks, “Even after killing a person, you claim you’re not criminals?”
Hong-seob killed his brother and Sun-hee killed herself – who’s next? Min-hyuk tells Jin-gyum not to worry and that they’ll take care of it themselves. However, the cop guesses that they believe they’re above the law. Unfazed, Min-hyuk says that he can’t win against his people. Jin-gyum reminds him that no matter when they came from, they’re in 2020 now.
The detectives debrief the newest case on hand. Seo-jin suffocated to death from exposure to a toxic gas. The suspect didn’t leave behind a single trace, so it’ll be difficult to track him down.
Do-yeon shows up at the station after reading the article about the murder based on the Schrödinger’s Cat experiment. Jin-gyum says they can talk later, but she demands to know how he seemed to know about this in advance.
To keep her safe, Jin-gyum tells her not to investigate any further. However, she refuses to back down and wants a clear explanation. Do-yeon threatens to tell the captain otherwise.
Jin-gyum speaks to Oh-won after Seo-jin’s funeral. While Oh-won knew that this would happen, he didn’t know who would be killed. If he did, he would have prevented it. He finally shares that preventing these tragic deaths is what he’s been doing for the past decade because of his mother.
Oh-won only knows that the suspect will go on to kill four more people. He’s aware that this is a lot to take in, since it took some time before he believed Tae-yi when she first reached out to him. To explain how they knew so much about the future, Oh-won says, “Someone’s future is another’s past.”
Jin-gyum finds Tae-yi sitting alone on a bench. She tells him that she didn’t have many friends growing up since she skipped grades and was always the youngest in the class. Tae-yi never had anyone to share worries with until she met Seo-jin. She feels guilty knowing that her actions led to her friend’s demise, but Jin-gyum gently says that if anyone’s to blame, it’s him.
Jin-gyum’s unsure whether the killer is connected to Min-hyuk in any way, as further investigation still needs to take place. Although he typically isn’t very aware of social cues, Jin-gyum feels like he shouldn’t leave Tae-yi by herself. He takes her home and even plays a song for her to fill the silence during the drive.
After walking her to her door, Jin-gyum takes his leave. Tae-yi can tell something’s wrong since her front door isn’t closed properly, but she walks inside anyway. Naturally, her lights are out so she wanders deeper into her dark apartment until she comes across a wall filled with equations. They’re written with the blood of a dead cat.
Tae-yi backs up in shock and bumps into the bearded man. Just as Jin-gyum decides to call her to ensure she got in safely, he hears her scream echoing into the night.
Can we get female leads to stop walking into their apartments when things are clearly looking dangerous? Tae-yi’s already aware that she’s being targeted because of the Time Card, so I can’t help but be frustrated that she didn’t just call out to Jin-gyum before entering her apartment. This bearded man has similar vibes to Se-hoon, so I wonder if Teacher sent him to 2020 to look for the Book of Prophecy? We now know that Oh-won is in possession of the book because he worked with Tae-yi, who took it with her when she went into hiding. He better keep it safe, since Alice and Teacher are both sending people after it. I’m finding it interesting that a future Tae-yi is very likely the author of the book, and the Tae-yi that lived as Jin-gyum’s mother used that information to try to prevent these tragic deaths. Since she’s the one who reached out to Oh-won in the first place, I’m sure she made him include her in his research team to work towards creating the wormhole used to time travel. It’s a whole lot of chicken-or-the-egg for me right now, wondering which Tae-yi acted first to create this whole cycle of events. I’m excited to find out!
To Min-hyuk and the others from the future, Alice is a great organization that aims to help people heal from their pain of the past. Evidently, their clients become greedy with borrowed time and end up committing crimes. While I know that Min-hyuk doesn’t condone these crimes, I have to side with Jin-gyum and ask – do they think they’re above the law, just because they come from the future? If time travel is going to be a thing, there needs to be stricter laws and consequences for the travelers’ actions. I’m uncomfortable knowing that Hong-seob and Sun-hee were just sent back to their timeline without having to pay for the murders they committed. Because they’re merely visitors to the past and know that Alice will bail them out of tough situations, the time travelers have no qualms about doing something that they’d otherwise get in trouble for in 2050. Maybe Jin-gyum can start up an inter-dimensional police force of sorts that punishes time travelers who break the law outside of their own timeline.
I’m not a fan of how hostile Do-yeon and Tae-yi are to one another. Tae-yi only acts this way because of how Do-yeon treats her, so I give her a pass. However, Do-yeon spends most of her time picking fights with Tae-yi and Jin-gyum because she doesn’t like that they hang out. While I understand why she’s acting this way to a certain extent, it just seems so excessive. She knows why Jin-gyum showed interest in Tae-yi at first, and it wasn’t because of romantic feelings. However, she feels threatened anyway because Tae-yi gets Jin-gyum to express his emotions. That’s something that Do-yeon hasn’t been able to do, no matter how long she’s been with him for. Storming into a professor’s workplace to stake claims on someone who isn’t even her boyfriend is pretty inappropriate. I wish they’d just tone down this aspect of Do-yeon’s character because we need to stop pitting women against each other for no good reason. I’m sure their banter is meant to be funny, but I just find it annoying and pointless. I’d much rather see Do-yeon working with Jin-gyum and Tae-yi (could we maybe throw Min-hyuk in here too?) to figure out how to save his mom in 2010 and prevent the upcoming murders that are written in the Book of Prophecy.