Alice: Episode 11
After taking a week off for the Chuseok holiday, Alice comes roaring back with action, drama, and the most shocking twist yet. Our favorite time-traveling cop is getting closer to discovering the identity of his mother’s killer, but he’s also still being hunted, and danger is closer than he ever imagined. He’s going to have to accept a new ally if he wants to live through this, and protect those he cares for.
EPISODE 11 RECAP
Time is the most valuable thing that humans can use. – Theophrastus
After a nice long reminder of everything that’s happened so far, we meet up with Captain Go. He’s on the phone with “Teacher,” and he promises to take care of their captive.
Nearby, Jin-gyum and the other team members arrive at the old amusement park, where Hae-min’s rental car was found as well as traces of Oh-won’s DNA. Jin-gyum sees Captain Go’s car and sends Dong-ho in another direction, then goes looking for the captain. He heads into the underground room and nearly gets shot by Captain Go, who gives him Oh-won’s ID badge as proof that he was here.
Unfortunately, Oh-won is still missing. In a meeting, Dong-ho tells the team that from the evidence, Oh-won was held in that room for quite a while, and Jin-gyum side-eyes Captain Go as they talk about the fact that there’s no evidence from the kidnapper. Dong-ho asks Jin-gyum about the dash cam footage from the inn where Se-hoon died, but Jin-gyum says it didn’t pick up anyone suspicious.
Tae-yi goes to the station to ask him to look at the USB (that was on his body when he died in the future), and when he recognizes it as the one that he threw out the car window, he quickly ushers her to a private room. She won’t say where she got the USB, only that Captain Go is on it. Jin-gyum defends Captain Go, saying that he’s been like family for ten years.
Tae-yi retorts that Jin-gyum throttled Oh-won with much less evidence, yet he’s giving Captain Go a pass when so many things point to him being a murderer. She tells Jin-gyum that this USB is on him when he dies, so she thinks it’s connected. Because it’s the only evidence she has, she refuses to give him the USB.
She goes to Do-yeon for some clarification on the relationship between Jin-gyum and Captain Go. She asks how long it was between when Captain Go and Jin-gyum met (the schoolgirl suicide case) and when Jin-gyum’s mother was killed. Do-yeon says that Jin-gyum’s mother was murdered only three days later.
When she returns to Jin-gyum’s home, Tae-yi tenses up to see that Captain Go is already there, lingering in her bedroom. He says he was just feeling nostalgic as he waits for Jin-gyum, but then, oddly, he asks if Tae-yi remembers any details of her childhood.
She says that she finds him and the scar behind his ear suspicious. She asks when he got the scar because it looks familiar, and Captain Go asks warily where she’s seen it before. He begins to slowly advance on Tae-yi, glaring at her darkly, but Jin-gyum finally comes home so Captain Go abandons whatever he was planning to do.
They go to a pojangmacha, where Captain Go tells Jin-gyum that he’s leaving the police force. He says he’s tired, and wants to retire and travel with his wife. He promises to stay until Oh-won is found, and although Jin-gyum is worried that they won’t be able to find Oh-won, he agrees that this is the right thing for Captain Go.
Jin-gyum takes a phone call, and whatever he hears has him looking sharply at Captain Go. He marches to the Kuiper building, where he finds Oh-won in his office, safe and sound. Oh-won tells Jin-gyum that he escaped yesterday, and when Jin-gyum asks to see the Book of Prophecy as promised, Oh-won admits that his kidnapper stole it.
Jin-gyum asks what it was in the book that Oh-won said he needed to know. But Oh-won decides, after this experience, that he wants nothing more to do with time travel. Jin-gyum wonders how he can give up so easily after ten years, but Oh-won just tells him that there’s nothing he can do to stop the time travelers.
The next day, Jin-gyum and Captain Go take Oh-won to the bunker where he was locked up. Jin-gyum asks Oh-won why he thinks he was kept alive when the other victims were killed right away. Oh-won says he doesn’t know, but there’s an odd moment when he looks at Captain Go and Captain Go looks away guiltily.
Captain Go and Oh-won take the same car, and Oh-won says that Jin-gyum seems to be suspecting Captain Go. Captain Go grumbles at Oh-won to just do his part, and Oh-won grins. Okay, what’s going on??
Min-hyuk is still working on his personal investigation, and at Alice, Cheol-am tells Shi-young not to take Min-hyuk’s suspicions to heart. She says that the destroyed footage from the inn where Se-hoon was killed is being restored, and that she hopes finding Se-hoon’s killer will lead them to Tae-yi’s killer, and maybe even the mysterious Teacher.
Meanwhile, Min-hyuk gets a report that there’s evidence Captain Go may have killed Se-hoon, but that Jin-gyum seems reluctant to arrest him. He goes to the house to talk to Jin-gyum but runs into Tae-yi first, and she’s wary of his claim that he wants to help Jin-gyum when he was so recently trying to kill him. He mutters that there was a misunderstanding, but Tae-yi couldn’t be less interested and orders him to stay away from Jin-gyum.
Captain Go finally tells In-sook that he resigned, and he apologizes for making the decision alone. But In-sook is glad to hear that she won’t have to worry about him anymore when he’s out on cases. HAHA, she even gives him her credit card and tells him to go drink as much as he wants tonight at his farewell dinner.
The whole team meets up at Crime Squad, Tae-yi’s parents’ restaurant, and they ask Captain Go to make a speech. Captain Go seems down and just says a quick, “let’s eat,” and Jin-gyum watches him worriedly. He walks Captain Go home after dinner, and he stays until Captain Go enters his building. Inside, Captain Go finds Min-hyuk waiting for him in the stairwell.
In-sook calls Jin-gyum, and when he hears that Captain Go didn’t make it home, he races back to the building. Min-hyuk has dragged Captain Go outside and is pointing his futuristic gun at him, demanding to know why he’s hanging around Jin-gyum. Captain Go asks if Min-hyuk is finally trying to be Jin-gyum’s father, and he just laughs when Min-hyuk asks how he knew, infuriating Min-hyuk even more.
Min-hyuk pistol-whips Captain Go, then Jin-gyum flies in with a right hook. Min-hyuk says that Captain Go is an illegal time traveler, and that he himself is trying to find out who killed Jin-gyum’s mother and is trying to kill him, too. Jin-gyum asks why he would do that, and he tells Min-hyuk never to touch Captain Go again, “He’s like a father to me. This is my last warning.”
Captain Go wakes up during the fight, but he pretends to still be unconscious until Jin-gyum gets him home and in bed. In-sook thinks that Captain Go took a tumble on the stairs, and as soon as Captain Go shows that he’s okay, Jin-gyum leaves.
Min-hyuk goes to Cheol-am and tells him what happened, and that he’s not sure what to do next. He believes that Captain Go is the killer, but that Jin-gyum is too attached to him to see the truth. He says that Teacher is looking for the Book of Prophecy, which is why he sent Se-hoon, killed Tae-yi, and is trying to kill Jin-gyum.
He wonders out loud why Tae-yi ran away with the Book of Prophecy. Cheol-am says that nobody knows who wrote it and nobody has read it, and that even he has no idea why the corporate office is so fixated on it. All he knows is that it foretells the end of time travel and says that whoever can control time travel can stop it altogether.
Growing thoughtful, Min-hyuk mentions how wormholes have opened near Jin-gyum twice now. He says he’ll look into it and asks Cheol-am not to tell corporate yet.
The CCTV footage from outside the inn is finally restored, and when Shi-young watches it, she sees Captain Go entering the inn like she expects. What she didn’t expect is that someone else also visited the inn — Cheol-am.
After Min-hyuk leaves, we see a flashback of the day that Se-hoon checked into the inn and called Jin-gyum, offering to tell him who killed his mother in return for protection. Someone had let themselves into his room, and Se-hoon had murmured, “Teacher…” when he saw the man’s face. It was Cheol-am, who had given Se-hoon a pill to take.
He’d shown Se-hoon the antidote and Se-hoon had dropped to the floor, apologizing abjectly. Cheol-am asked where the last page of the Book of Prophecy is, but Se-hoon insisted that it was already gone from the book when he first saw it. Cheol-am dropped the antidote and stepped on it, crushing the vial, then watched as Se-hoon choked to death on his own blood.
Captain Go had arrived, and Cheol-am left him to deal with the mess. He’d gone back to his office, where he had the Book of Prophecy in a locked box — well, all but the last page.
Tae-yi watches the USB video again, which clearly shows Captain Go leaving the inn. While Jin-gyum is in the shower, she tries to break into his phone, but she can’t guess his lock pattern and gets caught. After stammering guiltily, she finally admits that she wrote a tracking app that will let them see where each other are and help if needed.
Jin-gyum thinks it’s a good idea so Tae-yi installs the app on their phone. She teases him not to go to “inappropriate places,” and Jin-gyum says entirely seriously that he doesn’t go to places like that, hee.
Cheol-am and Captain Go meet at an abandoned church, where Cheol-am says that Jin-gyum can time travel, and that once he starts to control time, they’ll all be in danger. He thinks it’s time to kill Jin-gyum, but Captain Go points out that they still haven’t found the last page of the Book of Prophecy. Cheol-am says that if Jin-gyum closes the door of time before they find the last page, it might destroy Alice and strand all the time travelers. He gives Captain Go a clear order — kill Park Jin-gyum.
Captain Go calls Jin-gyum the next day and invites him to go night fishing that evening. Jin-gyum agrees, and Captain Go hangs up and gets his revolver. He doesn’t want to do this, but Cheol-am had threatened that Captain Go will lose his wife again (wait, again?) and get evicted if he doesn’t obey orders.
Tae-yi makes up a bunch of food and calls Jin-gyum, but he doesn’t answer, so she goes to the station. Dong-ho tells her that Jin-gyum went fishing with Captain Go, something they do together occasionally. She gives Dong-ho the USB and asks for his help, saying that she thinks Captain Go murdered Se-hoon.
While fishing that evening, Captain Go goes to the tent ostensibly to get Jin-gyum something to eat. Instead, he comes back and cocks his gun at Jin-gyum’s head, but Jin-gyum doesn’t even move, as if he was expecting this. Jin-gyum stands and faces Captain Go, who apologizes and says, “This is the only way to save my wife.”
We flash back (flash forward?) to 2050, and Captain Go is standing over In-sook’s body at the morgue. A stranger approaches him, Cheol-am, who offers him a chance to see his wife again through time travel. There’s one catch — he has to go to 2010 and carry out a task.
And so, Captain Go had gone back to 2010 to kill Tae-yi. The house was empty when he broke in, and he’d seen a photo of her with young Jin-gyum. He’d found Oh-won’s business card on Tae-yi’s dresser, so he’d staked out the Kuiper building until he saw Tae-yi leave, then he’d followed her as she ran her errands.
While she was shopping, Captain Go had spotted this dimension’s version of In-sook, young and healthy. He’d given up on following Tae-yi and had trailed In-sook on her walk home. He’d almost run into this dimension’s Captain Go, and he’d watched as In-sook complained that her husband is always gone on stakeouts.
Captain Go continued to follow the couple as they visited a sauna together, but soon the alternate Captain Go got a call that there was a lead on the arsonist he’d been trying to catch. He’d left In-sook again, waving off her admonishments to be careful.
Our Captain Go got a call that night from Cheol-am (check out that flip phone), and had reported that he’d located Tae-yi. He’d said that he’d seen his wife, and that she was happy, so he was satisfied and ready to return to his own time after he killed Tae-yi.
The next day, In-sook couldn’t reach her husband, so she’d texted that she really needed to talk to him. Captain Go watched her, deep concern in his eyes, but he hadn’t approached her. He’d looked up the arson case and seen an article that said alternate Captain Go went missing.
He found the arsonist and took him by surprise, holding his head in a sink full of water until the arsonist told him where he left alternate Captain Go. He found his doppelganger in the woods, weak from a stab wound in his stomach, and when he saw his own face looking back at him, alternate Captain Go pulled his gun on Captain Go.
Captain Go had proved who he was by talking about how he met his wife and the death of their son. He’d said that after their son died, he worked constantly because being at home was too difficult. He told alternate Captain Go that because of this, he didn’t know that In-sook was dying until it was too late.
He’s said that alternate Captain Go had to get better and be there for In-sook, but alternate Captain Go was growing weak. He’d asked Captain Go, “Don’t go. Can I ask you to take care of In-sook? She only suffered because of me. Make her happy.” He had died, leaving Captain Go with no choice but to bury him and take over his identity in this timeline.
He’d covered for his absence by claiming that he was in the hospital, and very soon after, he’d met Jin-gyum while investigating the high school suicide case. He had liked the kid, and had taken him in after Tae-yi’s mother was murdered. He’d tried to talk Jin-gyum out of joining the police force, promising to catch his mother’s killer himself.
Back in the present, Captain Go holds his gun steady on Jin-gyum, and apologizes while Jin-gyum just stands there, unmoving. Captain Go pulls the trigger, but at the last second he aims at the sky, sparing Jin-gyum’s life. He asks why Jin-gyum didn’t do anything, and Jin-gyum says in a small voice, “Because it’s you. You’re not the culprit. You can’t be. You promised to catch the killer.”
Captain Go sighs heavily, then takes Jin-gyum’s phone and handcuffs him to a sign. He says he’s finally going to make good on that promise he made ten years ago, and catch the person who killed his mother. He asks Jin-gyum to take care of In-sook, and he leaves Jin-gyum screaming in grief and frustration. He makes a call and says that he got rid of Jin-gyum, and that he learned something new about him and requests a meeting.
Luckily, Tae-yi has grown worried enough that she’s followed her tracking app to his location. She passes Captain Go on the road, and she watches as the tracker follows Captain Go’s car, so she makes a u-turn and follows him.
He waits at the same old church, gun cocked and ready, for the person he called to arrive. Tae-yi runs in first, and they’re shocked to see each other. Tae-yi demands to know what Captain Go did with Jin-gyum, but he just tells her to leave or she’ll get killed. Tae-yi accuses Captain Go of killing Jin-gyum, but he says that Jin-gyum is like a son to him.
His phone rings, and Cheol-am asks if Captain Go thought he could save Jin-gyum by doing this. He says it’s all out of his hands now, and we see that he’s with Oh-won. He bows to Oh-won, calling him “Teacher,” then hands him the phone. Oh-won informs Captain Go that the choice he made will cost him both his wife and Jin-gyum, then hangs up on him.
Unfortunately, by handcuffing Jin-gyum to the sign, Captain Go has left him a sitting duck. When Oh-won arrives, he marvels that Captain Go cares this much about Jin-gyum. Jin-gyum realizes that Oh-won is the killer and asks how long he’s been fooling him, but Oh-won just smiles and says that his mother asked him the same question.
He raises his gun and aims at Jin-gyum’s head. Tae-yi has been speeding back to the campsite, and she arrives just in time to hear a gunshot.
I have to say, until this episode, I would have agreed with @selena’s stance that the show didn’t seem to be going anywhere. There just wasn’t much happening — very little time travel, no character development, no new information on Tae-yi’s murder — for the past few episodes. But this episode made up for that in a big way, with so many twists and turns and shocking reveals that my head is spinning. I’m impressed that Oh-won turns out to be the Big Bad and Tae-yi’s killer… after initially suspecting Captain Go, then being sure it was Cheol-am, that was an excellent twist and reveal. I can’t wait to learn more about how all the players ended up where they are and why.
It all makes sense now that we’ve seen Captain Go’s backstory, why he was doing so many awful things yet seemed to truly care for Jin-gyum… because he does! I love him even more for the fact that he never meant to stay in the past, and was genuinely ready to go back to his own time, but circumstances and a promise kept him in this timeline. And his affection for Jin-gyum is 100% real, which makes me happy for them both. It would have been too tragic for Jin-gyum to lose his mother, then find out that the father figure he loves and looks up to was a bad person all along.
That whole scene when Captain Go was getting ready to kill Jin-gyum, and Jin-gyum trusted him so much that he didn’t move a muscle to save himself, was so moving. It just goes to show that Jin-gyum may not understand emotions, but he still feels them, and his trust in Captain Go is so unshakable that he knew he wouldn’t kill him. I’ve heard some complaints that Joo Won’s talent is being wasted in this show because his character is so stoic and unemotional, but I don’t agree — I can always tell what he’s feeling by looking at his eyes. And you could see in that moment that he believed in Captain Go, but there was also sorrow for Captain Go himself and what he suffered that pushed him to that point.
I’m still confused on quite a few things, though at this point I’m used to being confused while watching Alice, ha. So, I get that Oh-won is Teacher, which makes him the “final boss” (as us gamers say), as he’s the one who’s been manipulating everyone to find the Book of Prophecy and kill anyone who knows too much about it. But he’s also in league with Cheol-am, who seems to do some of the hard work and possibly even poses as Teacher while keeping the Alice employees in the dark. Oh-won even faked his own kidnapping in order to get the Book of Prophecy to Cheol-am, but I don’t understand why. Maybe it was to deflect suspicion off himself, but nobody was really suspecting him, and he just revealed himself anyway. And it was Cheol-am who sent Captain Go back to kill Tae-yi, but Oh-won who ultimately killed her, I’m assuming, since he was so nearby that night. I’m very curious to see how all that came about, as well as how Captain Go was allowed to live undisturbed for ten years after not carrying out his order to kill Tae-yi. This was an exciting episode and a lot happened, but I have a feeling we’re nowhere near the end of the shocking surprises.