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Connection: Episodes 5-6

In the aftermath of yet another murder, our protagonists double down on pursuing the few leads they have. Another fragment of the past resurfaces, calling to mind memories that — while unpleasant — may just be key to solving the case.

 
EPISODES 5-6

Retracing the possible routes around the store, Jae-kyung narrows the culprit down to a taxi driver. Said taxi driver, Yoon-ho, is currently tracking down NOH GYU-MIN, Joon-seo’s taxi driver on the night of his murder. Jae-kyung is searching for him too, having checked the CCTV tapes the owner gave him, but Gyu-min has gone into hiding.

Later, Yoon-jin visits Jae-kyung at the station with homemade lunch boxes, claiming it’s 51% to pry information out of him, 49% because she’s worried. Hee. When he shows her the Doctor’s text, she shares her own information too — she’s received a tip off from that same number, signed off with “Audiophile.”

The tip off leads Yoon-jin to a medical malpractice case at Woonjong Medical Center, where a patient died while in their care. Woonjong’s staff disavow responsibility, but the bereaved son asserts they’d given his late mother the wrong prescription. The medicine that they’d fed her had been manufactured by — who else — Keumhyung Pharmaceuticals.

Returning to our main case, our leads head to the Audiophile company address, which takes them to a house in the Pilo-dong redevelopment area. In it lives the high school student MIN HYUN-WOO (Han Hyun-joon), who isn’t fazed by their sudden visit since Joon-seo had told him to expect Jae-kyung and Yoon-jin (leaving poor Joo-song out of the loop, lol).

It turns out Joon-seo had been helping Hyun-woo and his family out financially, but no other clues surface. When a frustrated Jae-kyung bluntly informs Hyun-woo’s grandmother of Joon-seo’s death, the usually patient Joo-song snaps, rebuking Jae-kyung for his insensitive approach. Amidst his tirade, Joo-song accuses Jae-kyung of treating Joon-seo the same way back in high school, when CHAE KYUNG-TAE died.

That brings us to a brief glimpse into their high school days, after Kyung-tae’s passing. Clocking Joon-seo’s anxious demeanor, Jae-kyung immediately knows he’s hiding something. Jae-kyung suspects Joon-seo had gone to Kyung-tae’s house the day it went up in flames with Kyung-tae inside, but Joon-seo refuses to come clean about what happened. Around a corner, Gyu-min overhears their confrontation, and clutched in his bandaged fist is Jong-soo’s name tag.

Back in the present, Jae-kyung breaks away from the group to cool off. Hoping to find the CCTV tapes Joon-seo obtained from the store owner, Jae-kyung pays Ji-yeon a visit. There’s nothing relevant on Joon-seo’s hard drive, but Jae-kyung coincidentally catches Tae-jin unlocking Ji-yeon’s apartment door and walking right in all too familiarly.

If Jae-kyung has caught on to their affair, though, he doesn’t let on. Meanwhile, Yoon-jin and her colleague are also on Ji-yeon’s tail, following her and Tae-jin to a cafe. Some stealthy eavesdropping allows them to figure out that the password Tae-jin wants from Ji-yeon will unlock an account with a significant sum inside — but Tae-jin doesn’t know exactly how much, which means the account isn’t his.

Apart from our leads’ murder investigation, there’s also the matter of the drug case. Jae-kyung’s team launches an undercover operation, necessitating Jae-kyung to play the role of a druggie and approach the dealers with one of the apprehended addicts. The dealer injects Jae-kyung with lemon meth to test his nerves, and though Jae-kyung passes the impromptu test, the addict betrays him at the last second and reveals the scheme.

While the other officers apprehend the runaway addict, Jae-kyung rushes back to clear the needle away before anyone can spot it. If they find out and cleanse his system, they’ll discover a far higher dosage in his bloodstream from his regular pills, and Jae-kyung can’t have that. Except someone has already gotten there first — it’s Chang-soo, who silently pockets the needle, meeting Jae-kyung’s gaze with an inscrutable expression.

It appears Jae-kyung was right to suspect Chang-soo’s timely interventions, though the confirmation of his involvement still doesn’t clear up his intentions. Is Chang-soo a mole planted by the Doctor to cover up Jae-kyung’s tracks until he achieves his goal, or does he have other motives? Surely he can’t be going this far of his own accord, simply out of loyalty and blind faith in Jae-kyung?

The more we learn about the Doctor, the more it seems like they’re helping our leads by guiding them, albeit in a very roundabout way. The project pitch to turn Pilo-dong into a bioindustrial complex — conceived by Tae-jin and delivered through Jong-soo — seems like a way to benefit Keumhyung Pharmaceuticals, while also providing a large-scale production and distribution system for illicit drugs. It’s almost like the Doctor is trying to take down the operation from the inside, but why? And how did Kyung-tae’s death spark all of this?

With the massive chip on Jong-soo’s shoulder when it comes to Tae-jin, and the hearing aid that one of Jae-kyung’s kidnappers had accidentally dropped at the station, our antagonists are bound to slip up even more. The question is, can Jae-kyung remain lucid enough to connect the puzzle? Or will the pieces slip from his trembling grasp?

 
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I am Enjoying this show a LOT! It’s tight paced and all characters are well written.

It feels like Jae-kyung caught a bit of break by revealing the gun loss to his Unit chief. Also, now he is drugged in an official capacity. I really hope Chang-Soo is a good guy. It does seem that someone is helping protect Jae-kyung from getting caught, especially the CCTV missing clips in the police station.

I thought it was really stupid of Tae Jin to have such a conversation in a cafe!! I expected him to be smarter than that. The affair reveal was well done.

I love the interactions between Jae-kyung and Yoon Jin. There is familiarity and also some good chemistry there. I hope they start sharing information soon.

Everything is connecting to the high school, including the taxi driver. Can’t wait for the reveal.

Ji Sung is 💙.

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With every episode, I hope that JJK doesn't take the next pill so that he has a chance to get off the drug without too many side effects. By now I wish he would be discovered as soon as possible. The undercover operation where he was injected would have been the ideal time, but he will definitely succeed in covering everything up again.
Even if JJK survives everything without major damage, I wonder what his future will look like. I can't imagine that, as a former drug addict, he will be allowed to continue working in the drugs squad.

I wonder if it's just a coincidence that the pain medication has similar effects to the new drug.

It's obvious that JJK hasn't changed much since his youth. Even back then he had a strong sense of justice, was stubborn and headstrong.
And that is one of the reasons why he finds himself in the current hopeless situation. Apart from his breakdown in tears, I found the scene with OYJ particularly harrowing, in which he honestly replies that he's going to take another pill. It was probably a mixture of realistic self-assessment and the urge to solve the murder of his guilty friend, whatever the cost (including his health).

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Most high level pain medications have highly addictive qualities such as morphine, Opioids or oxycontin.
I think the grandma's drugs were intended to be a new experimental pain medication but it was a failure with side-effects so KH decided to take the research to sell it on the street it as an illegal substance.

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How many murders now? The rice cakes man was simply a sweet guy. And that psycho Yoon-ho guy offed him just like that. I know that Jong-soo has an inferiority complex when it comes to Tae-jin. But this guy's complex is when it comes to the triad of baddies. The way he fights to be acknowledged by them is so palpably pitiable. His exeunt had better match his actions. The man was only a rice cakes seller.

Oh Chi-hyun. That guy is too composed.

The scene after Jong-soo's presentation...💯 intense. Jong-soo's father tore him into shreds with just a few sentences. I feel like that burning reminder at the back of his head will be a huge helping hand in tearing the confederal solidarity that exists amongst the triad. The flashback/backstory to where it will began from took me to the same conversation in Little Women - Individuals who knew what they lacked and where ready to sell what was required to upscale. Even though it was a young Tae-jin, he sure made Won Dad feel envious of his parent's. His composure was 📌. But then, if Tae-jin were his son, I doubt if we'd have this particular story playing in front of us.

The affair reveal to Jae-gyung is perfect. I'm guessing that he caught on, or he sniffed something. He might not have gotten anything from the videos he watched. But he sure gained a lot by staying back to watch it.

Chang-soo? I'm not calling dibs on him yet. But I'm watching him.

At this point in the drama, I'll say that I haven't warmed up to the leads yet. Yoon-jin's selfishness and Jae-gyung's standoffish behavior is not endearing at all. But I'll admit that they are competent at their job. And to see that competence will make tune in each week.

Jae-gyung speaking to his unit chief did help plead his case to me this week. And color me impressed with the way Joo-sung held Jae-gyung accountable for the issues I have with Jae-gyung's character.

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I really liked Joo Sung for calling out Jae Kyung’s bullheaded nature and lack of understanding. Somebody had to tell him. That scene was well done.

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Suddenly, we get an episode of Jae-Kyeong acting as a logical detective tracing the steps of the rice mill owner’s murder. We think he has withdrawn from the drug use (false) to have a clear head. The leads get his crew of Yoon-Jin and the Insurance Agent tracking down Jae-Seo’s last days, including befriending a grandma and grandson in the redevelopment area. But the biggest reveal is the incident 20 years ago when a class mate was killed and Jae-Seo apparently covered up the crime. There was another student who may have been brutally silenced about the case. It seems the high school had a gang lead by ambitious Jong-Soo, Tae-In and others who dreamed of making it big, chaebol big. Jong-Soo is solely focused in on becoming powerful in the pharma company in order to “pay” for the big score (the real estate millions) but Jae-Kyeong keeps following their stupid mistakes to get closer to the truth. Yoon-Jin’s theory that Jae-Seo’s murder may have been a confrontation with Tae-In about his affair with Ji-Yeon makes perfect sense especially when Jae-Kyeong is present when Tae-In makes a lover’s house call.

Episode 6 changes the narrative a lot with more background information as it surprisingly puts Tae-In as KH Group’s golden boy over Chairman’s son Jong-Soo. It also questions Jon-Soo’s ability to be a smart, independent leader. He seems to have his own drug problem. Tae-In is the man-behind-the-curtain who uses people. For example, thorough Yoon-Jin’s investigation skills we learn Jae-Seo was part of KH Pharm’s illegal testing of drug on the brain tumor patient. We also learn that Yi-Yeon is the key to getting access in millions of dollars in an account (which probably is the drug dealing profits, embezzled company funds or both). It was incredible gall and sleaze of Tae-In to try to get Yi-Jeon to give him the pass code then elope with her. At least she had the mental clarity to hold on to the one valuable asset left in her miserable life. The drug deal does give Jae-Kyeong the golden opportunity to get medical withdrawal treatment since he was injected with the weakened form of the drug. Will he take that opportunity or continue to be a rogue? I bet he continues his rogue behavior. These two episodes were the most on-track so far in the series.

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I'm always immersed in the story and I don't want the episodes to end! EP 6 ended on a big cliffhanger! Chang Soo has been caught real time by Jae Kyung. How is he going to come up with a reasonable answer for what he did? He may have two options: He took the needle to secure evidence before forensics got there or he took the needle to truly cover Jae Kyung's drug problem. They can't hash it out there. Not the time or place. Did Chang Soo lose the drug dealer a bit too quickly? Hmm.

Yoon Jin believes the secret money account is originally Tae Jin's. So I wonder if he somehow transferred or lost an account and Ji Yeon or Joon Seo did something to guard it from him. I doubt he actually cares for her. He is feeding her lies until she gives up the passcode.

I briefly felt bad for Jong Soo when his father totally crushed his confidence. He must have had suffocating pressure and constant comparison to Tae Jin over the years since high school.

I couldn't tell who the hearing aid belonged to. Geun Ho or Jin Wook?

Noh Gyu Min (Joon Seo's taxi driver) is also the name of a classmate back in high school. Coincidence? I think not.

I spoke a little too soon about Jae Kyung & Yoon Jin sharing info. I need them to work together more! XD

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I think bank account is a borrowed name account. Tae In had the account in Joon-seo's name but Joon-Seo only had access to it. Yi Jeon knows about the account but not how much is in it - - - except that it is a lot of money. And she senses Tae In is desperate to get access to it.

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I love the characters, they just push-and-pull each other and the plot remains superb.

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Things are heating up. Its unlikely that Jae Gyeong didnt catch on the affair. He knows but is just being careful about it.
I am enjoying this drama a lot and suspect that our baddies will make more mistakes.
I sure hope our detective will be okay after all this. The Doctor has something planned for him but I hope there is also an antidote to save him from his drug spiral.

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I had that thought too. Since it's a KDrama and the drug presumably comes from the pharmaceutical company, I wouldn't be surprised if there is an antidote in the end.

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There must be one because I worry a lot on what will happen to him in the end. Worse cases are jail time, rehab or death.

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Or irreparable nerve damage :-(

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Now we have a new detail revealed about Jong Soo. He could be on lemon meth and taking the other med to help him endure. Drug addiction + his short temper = bad mix.

We also see the villains aren't open to each other even when they are affected by the same incident. Chi Hyun hid the fact that he knows who killed the shop owner when Tae Jin asked him.

solstices brought up the idea that the Doctor could be helping the good guys in a way. I hadn't thought of this, but it is interesting. I'm curious about the Doctor's identity!

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The Doctor could be the white coat man who went into the conference room to give Jong-Soo the white pill to stop his unconsciousness. It would also seem that Jong-Soo is addicted to a different drug. The pill bottle in his drawer was different than the capsule lemon meth. I don't think the Doctor is a "good" person because he was unleashed a dangerous drug to the public. I think he or she has a sociopathic revenge motive against the high school group.

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When I saw the employee in the white coat, my first thought was that it must be the doctor.
Although there is still the possibility that there are two doctors.
But I'm pretty sure that Joon-seo wasn't the doctor.

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Well, there are/were two Doctors. The first one is dead or eliminated and the second broke the rules with the dealer's phone calls.

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I wonder if the original Doctor was bad and the second one is trying to expose the truth about Joon Seo while wanting Jae Kyung's downfall. Or they want to ruin the lemon meth business so someone (a rival) gets caught.

It's confusing the more I think about it, haha. Multiple plot threads are unclear.

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White coat guy looked shady enough! He is someone from high school too. Kinda hope it's a shocker though. XD

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If White Coat is another HS chum, then he probably works for Tae-In. And it would make sense to use drugs to control Jong-Soo like he is trying to control Jae-Kyeong.

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Oh you're right, the pill was different. Either way, he didn't look healthy.

I don't think the Doctor is necessarily a good person either. Not enough clues.

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