Special Affairs Team TEN 2 - Episode 2 (Recap)

I must say, recapping is a lot of work. I suspected that, being smart an all, and that's why I tried to keep away from it. Couldn't resist this one, though ... I do wonder how some people (*looks at Dramabeans*) churn out recaps a few hours after the episode aired? And like ... almost every day?! That's insane! (I mean insane in a good way). That said, I am quite glad that TEN2 is my first recapping project: It's both short and exciting. Very much so. Okay, and it's also suuuuper complicated, my goodness! But doing these recaps also helps me understand what is going on. Or at least helps me try to understand; with all my might. Yes, understanding the plot is the main aim, which means lengthy, lengthy descriptions (and forgive me for doing some spazzing on the side, too). What I really wanted to say is this: I am sorry this is so epic. 

Special Affairs Team TEN 2 - Episode 2

Understand, Part 2

We open with a very depressed team in a semi-dark office that fits their gloomy mood. They are deep in thought... Min-ho thinks about the time when Yeo Ji-hoon bound his hands and duct taped him to see whether it was possible for the suspect to get from one place to another in a relatively short time (it wasn't possible and that was an important clue. But still ... What a sexy lunatic).
Ye-ri thinks of a conversation they had in the car, when Ji-hoon said that there are people who wear really thick masks, impossible for her to penetrate. Do-shik thinks back to a moment of "bonding", when Do-shik went after the murderer of his old friend and colleague Dog Nose all by himself ... or rather, when Ji-hoon let him go alone, even though he knew that he would be in danger. When Do-shik sits in the ambulance, all bloody and hurt, Ji-hoon calls him "sunbaenim" for the first (and only?) time.
*Le deep sigh*.
Must really suck to find out your boss is a murderer!
And then, the realization: If Yeo Ji-hoon went to the murdered woman's house (to murder her), he really played them at the crime scene and at the autopsy! (Yes, he played me too, by gawd, I really thought he was utterly shocked and shaken. He made me feel for him. Even more than usual).

Was he acting the whole time, then? Min-ho pleads Ye-ri noona to say something! She knows that kinda stuff! But she is sorry ... she doesn't know either. Cause Ji-hoon is wearing a thick mask all them time. Do-shik concludes the doom-and-gloom by saying that there is not denying the fact that all the F-cases point to Ji-hoon. And the crazy thing, the scary thing is ... they don't know who Yeo Ji-hoon is. They may have worked with him; but they sure as hell don't know him. 
But then, Min-ho has a revelation: He knows why he was chosen for the TEN team! He has seen Ji-hoon's record of past psychiatric treatment (snoopy little snoop). After the death of his wife, Ji-hoon couldn't sleep without sleeping pills or alcohol and couldn't live without anger management pills. Min-ho knows one other person just like Ji-hoon: his father. Yes, Min-ho knows like no other what happens to a person who loses a loved one to a murderer. And that, he believes, is why Ji-hoon wanted him on the team. Because he would know that he couldn't have killed her. But that means ...the video could be a trap! The pretending-to-be-shocked at the autopsy could be about something they don't understand! Anything! Listen to him! No, sexy predator detective is not guilty!! 

A speck of hope ... a deep breath. Back to the last "F" case then. Room 101, Kim Min-hee. 

악마 (Devil)

A person sits in a dark (or rather blue) cellar of some sorts. The person is wearing dark clothes and a baseball cap and doesn't seem all that chipper. It is nobody else than Yeo Ji-hoon. Thanks for showing his face right after this title! 
A parking garage. The TEN team hides behind a concrete pillar (hahaha, Min-ho twists his body in the funniest way in order to fit behind it). They are breaking into the police offices!
Min-ho starts downloading all the case-relevant information on a datastick. And of course one of the investigators (it's the boss) forgot something ... and returns to the office! Not that I haven't seen that particular situation before - it being standard in so many spy-movies - but it does help to bring my blood pressure up. HURRY Min-ho! Or rather, should have bought a better data stick, a faster one!!!
When the man reaches the office and turns on the lights, we see Min-ho hiding behind another pillar. All seems good, as the investigator picks up his cell and leaves ... but then, he notices that one of the computers is running ... and switches on the screen! No, I don't like you, don't discover Min-ho!! Min-ho weasels around the pillar and the man finally sighs that he keeps telling his people to switch off their computers. A close call! (though I am not entirely sure why we saw that sequence ... seems kinda pointless, really. But an excited or scared Min-ho is always a pretty sight)
Back at the office, they are going through the information they have gathered. So: all the women were lonely females with no close family and no real job (though we know from before that some were working as escorts in bars). However, that obviously doesn't apply to Hee-joon. Hm. Not that they mention that - this is your smart kakashi pointing it out.
The victim, Kim Min-hee, called the police before she was murdered - AND talked to Yeo Ji-hoon in particular. The police then tracked the phone address and that is how they found the site where she was murdered. Apparently, this was the first time they spoke - so they didn't seem to know each other. From the camera footage, they know that Yeo Ji-hoon entered the victim's house at 3:46pm and came out at 3:59. 13 minutes ... what could he have done in 13 minutes? What did he see and do and why did he put on an act the next day? 

They go to the crime scene next. Do-shik and Ye-ri stage a fight on the street, to lure away the policemen that stand guard in front of the house. Their acting is pretty unconvincing until Do-shik touches Ye-ri's bosom by accident ... after which Ye-ri starts hitting poor Do-shik over the head with her purse,. He runs away, terrified ... the police follow.
Min-ho takes the chance to enter the dead woman's apartment and takes pictures with his tablet (btw, if this is product placement (PPL), and I'm guessing it is, cause they always carry around tables to look at picture and take pictures, it's not very good PPL, cause I cannot even see what brand it is! Plus, I've caught them many times in un-PPL-ing stuff. Like Ji-hoon's car, a Hyundai. They put a black sticker on the H. But they put it on in a way that still makes it apparent that it is a Hyundai *shakes head*)

It is confirmed by the pictures that the victim was killed in her apartment and then brought to the hotel and room 101. But why? And, more importantly: When and how and by whom? Probably at night, to not be seen ... Go get all the CCTV information from all the roads that go from the apartment to the hotel, Min-ho! Yay for CCTV in Korea, this is like the 100000000 time they use it to solve a crime. Ye-ri is sent to find out more about Kim Min-hee. (and here's a question for you: why are there so many playground scenes in KDrama?)
While Ye-ri looks at the crime-site pictures again, she recognizes something important: Kim Min-hee also has fliers from the victim support organization, Ha-neul. Oh-oh ... She quickly looks up the picture she found in Hee-joon's room and indeed ... Yeo Ji-hoon, Jung Hee-joo, and Kim Min-hee all met at one of the Ha-neul gatherings! The plot thickens. It'll soon be a s thick as concrete.
At the police station, some of the investigators are watching CCTV footage of our TEN team breaking into their office. Haha. So I guess there was some relevance to the scene before. They are cool about it and even think it's convenient, cause they believe the TEN team hounds will be able to catch the running hound. Did you just refer to my Ji-hoon as dog, you bastard?!
Ye-ri goes to meet the priest who is in charge of the Ha-neul meetings. The elderly man remembers Min-hee well. She took part in the gatherings for a short while in 2004 because her sister was murdered. Ye-ri wants to know whether she was close to a man ... the priest doesn't know that (and why would he, Ye-ri! He's a catholic priest!).
She then asks whether he remembers Yeo Ji-hoon. He does! He came to investigate the crimes and talked to some of the members. But he was also quite careless with the murder scene photos ... one of the women saw them and was deeply shocked because she had not know how her beloved was killed before that moment. Tsts, Ji-hoon.
The priest doesn't have many more memories ... but he recounts one specific episode when there was a protest gathering in front of the police station, to protest against closing the F-cases. The chief of police gets out of a car and walks toward to doors of the station. Wait ... is he Hee-joon's dad? It is! He tries to calm the excited crowd but then he gets attacked with eggs and other stuff like flour. Choi Heon-jeong's mom (in the future: The Mom) grabs his hand and desperately begs him to catch the killer of her daughter. He tries to shake her, put she holds on really fast ... and out comes Ji-hoon to help his almost-father-in-law, he twists the poor mother's hand painfully and pushes her to the ground. The priest remembers that that woman would know the most about Kim Min-hee - they were kinda close.
In the meantime, Do-shik and Min-ho sift through hours of CCTV footage. Right when we turn in, they find something ... huh? It's the autopsy lady (Seo Yoo-rim)!! She is in one of the cars!! And very conveniently lit up. But they can't make out who the driver is. The car is seen twice on the road to/from the apartment, with the perfect time in between to get to body from the apartment!
It's a rental car - and they go find out who rented it. The rental car man confirms: Yes, Seo Yoo-rim rented it. Was she alone? No, a man was there with her. Did he see his face? Yes, he did. Was it ... this man? And Do-shik pulls out a photo of Ji-hoon. Oh shit ... it was!
The bleakest of dooms descends on us as they come out of the rental car office into the rain ... in slomo (un-slomoed in the gif). Their world just ended a little bit, probably.
No more hope that Ji-hoon didn't do it and was trapped by F. No. Everything now suggests that Ji-hoon is F. Like for realz this time. Really.
Do-shik: "I'm going to kill you. Someone once said: if you kill a person, you're a murderer. But if you kill the devil, you're a hero. From now on Yeo Ji-hoon is ... a Devil"
The TEN team waltzes into the autopsy hall ... to arrests Seo Yoo-rim, who is just sawing up a body. She holds a human hand in her hand. Do-shik is so riled up, he even pulls out his gun and shoots at her when she doesn't answer where Ji-hoon is!!! Well, he shoots a bullet into the wall behind her, so I am guessing the blood on her face was already there from sawing up the body. She probably likes to bath in blood. And she just smiles calmly. Pretty cool, this lady. Though also a little bit scary. Not sure I would want to meet her alone in a dark alley ... 
Next up is a visit to Hee-joon's parents. Do-shik declares that he will open the case again, if they only say so. The grim father says: "I told him, don't catch him. Kill him, Quietly. I gave my gun to him". He asks Do-shik to tell them who did it. And Do-shik says: "The man you gave your gun to". (Well, dear Viper, that was a bit fast, wasn't it?! You don't just go tell the parents of a murder victim her boyfriend was the murderer until you have enough proof and/or a confession! Jeez, Do-shik, you have some anger management issues of your own there)
Yeo Ji-hoon and Seo Yoo-rim are now the official prime suspects in all the past F-case murders. 

Once again, the TEN team is ruminating in their bleak office (They need some plants in there, I think). Something is bothering them. All these clues in the files and those all over the place. Ji-hoon must have known they would point to him in the end. So why did he leave all the material for them to see? Do-shik thinks it's part of the camouflage - this bastard's specialty (yes, there is a lot of swearing in this series). He changes his camouflage pattern frequently: First, on the "home ground", it was "the boyfriend camouflage". Then, in the Daejeon case, "the young detective chasing criminal camouflage". In the Jung Hee-joon case, it was "the fiance having lost his lover camouflage" and the "heartbroken, family of the victim camouflage". And lastly, in the Kim Min-hee case: "leaving behind many traces camouflage". Or rather: "the exposing himself deliberately as a criminal camouflage".

A grim faced Do-shik says ominous things.
"Be nervous. Entering into the average person's head isn't pretty. But what we are dealing with is the devil. In order to catch the devil, don't you think we need to think like the Devil?"
Sounds an awful lot like the Monster who catches Monsters to me. That's really dangerous territory there, buddy!
We get a shot of Ji-hoon in his dark cellar hole again. He is calling Seo Yoo-rim, who is in custody and can't pick up her phone. He let's it ring a few times only, puts the phone down and picks up a piece of paper. He folds it. Hmmm ... what is it?
Then he gets up and hovers in front of a leather case, which he opens. It contains a gun. It's the gun his almost father-in-law gave to him to kill the killer.


Ye-ri pays a visit to Seo Yoo-rim's apartment. It kinda looks like another autopsy hall ... And lookie, Seo Yoo-rim has her bathroom mirror plastered full of picture of her and Ji-hoon in bed (Watch it, woman! He is mine! And frankly, that's a weird thing to do! Why would she want to see herself in bed with Ji-hoon when she looks into the mirror rather than herself? Okay, forget I asked) Ye-ri reads aloud "2004, that winter" (and I automatically finish her sentence with "the wind blows"). What? The year Hee-joo died? Bastard. Seriously: what a bastard.
Do-shik went back to the murder site and seems to be channelling something (i.e. the ghost of the dead?). Suddenly, he has an inspiration and goes over to the notepad. A page was removed! When he doesn't find it, he first suspect Ji-hoon removed it and then does the thing with the flattened pen on the paper underneath to read what had been written. Old trick! The note from the notepad reads: "Hee Joo shouldn't have died that way. We did wrong. I am sorry". (was that the note that Ji-hoon looked at before he took out the gun?)
Min-ho is at the autopsy hall (unless that's a second apartment of Seo Yoo-rim) and calls Do-shik. Should he restore some recently deleted video files on her computer? Do-shik suspects she made a porn video with Ji-hoon (lol) and wants to hang up, but Min-ho says it's autopsy files. And they must be from Min-hee's autopsy, cause they are the only ones missing. That gets Do-shik's attention and he orders Min-ho to recover it quickly!
Ye-ri goes to see Seo Yoo-rim. She confronts her with the affair she had with Ji-hoon. And says some preeeetty mean things about the poor man, too. She concludes with "He'll use you in every way he can and then get rid of you". But Seo Yoo-rim is not shaken at all. She only smiles her creepy smile and counters: "He'll use me in every way he can? Do you think I don't know that? You are good at reading through lies - but when it comes to love, your comprehension is very off". Oh dear. The poor woman ... in love with the cold bastard.
The two men have recovered the missing autopsy file ... and they discover that the victim, Kim Min-hee, has definitely not died of suffocation, as the autopsy officially concluded - but slashed her wrists!

Off again to her apartment! Do-shik orders the squad to search for signs of blood - a lot of it. And they find it: in the bathroom. Kim Min-hee has slashed her wrists while lying in the tub. It was a suicide ... and the note was the suicide note. Derp faces all around.
This is a suicide disguised as a homicide. Not a murder.

They leave it up to Ye-ri (of course) to make a dead person speak through her psychological autopsy. How did she live, why did she have a reason to commit suicide? From the hospital Ye-ri learns that Min-hee attempted suicide twice (in January and April of 2005). One method, the doctor said, was very weird: she tried to hide her own face with tape. Ooookay, hello creepy. Is there a guardian listed in the file? smart Ye-ri asks. I really love her.

Yes, there is. The name is Song Kyung- tae.

And BANG, we enter another phase of our twisted story. The name Song Kyung-tae rings a bell with the boys ... cause he was a guest at the hotel where the body was found! Room 308! Third floor! Alone! He could be F!
Ye-ri goes to talk to The Mom next, who knew Min-hee best. And she also knew Kyung-tea really well ... Because he too, was a member of Ha-neul. What? When Ye-ri voices the suspicion that he may have been faking the dead-family-member-thing, The Mom corrects her. She may not know because she never experienced it herself. But such a thing cannot be faked. Kyung-tae lost someone. With absolute certainty. She herewith confirms, what Min-ho has said in the beginning - if you lose someone close to you through murder, you are forever changed.

The boys are at his apartment, and it is the creepy apartment of a serial killer, full of pictures on the wall and mannequins with duct tape and other stuff covering their faces ... and there also is a wall full of Ji-hoon photos. Yikes. The monster targeting the monster.
Do-shik alerts Ye-ri about this guy and tells her to go check out Ji-hoon's apartment (not sure why he thinks that really important right at that moment?!). He says to be careful because Kyung-tae certainly knows where Ji-hoon lives (exactly!) and he also says that the need to find Kyung-tae before Ji-hoon does. Because Ji-hoon has a gun. That gun.

They once again (indeed for the umpteenth time) try to second-guess Ji-hoon. What is he up to next? they ask themselves. Ji-hoon seems to have known that Kim Min-hee was connected to "F". He may even have known that she was his girl. Also, they talked before her suicide. And then, he went to her place, saw that she had killer herself, and came up with a really morbid plan, to make it look like an F-case. They conclude it's a form of revenge: Jung Hee-joo was put in the hotel room to cause Ji-hoon maximum grief. So, Ji-hoon wanted to cause F maximum grief. And he staged Min-hee's death exactly like Hee-joo's death: Same hotel, same room, same tape.

But ... it was not only revenge, was it? It also was provocation! Because Ji-hoon must have realized in the seven years of his obsession over F that F could not be caught by chasing after him. No. F can only be caught if you make him chase you.

Up next is Ji-hoon in the empty music hall (that's the scene from Season 1). Oh-oh, we have now caught up. We know what is coming next ... It is Ye-ri at his apartment, where she finds the note with the address, under the cactus she gave him. She calls her colleagues, but they don't hear the call. She texts them they location and goes there alone. Still not a good idea, girl. I told you so a while ago. You should have listened!

Following her taxi in his own car is ... Ji-hoon.
Do-shik and Min-ho see the text. Oh no! Ji-hoon saw Ye-ri off a lot recently, has he not?  ... she is in grave danger!!!!! What a bastard. Of course he did that deliberately. Once again, he is using a woman as: 

미끼 (Bait)

Death and the Maiden plays (thank you, show. NOT). We see that somebody is waiting at the warehouse. Ye-ri enters it. Ji-hoon is a bit behind, because he had to circle around a police roadblock. He does not seem to know where she is going, because he puts the license plate into a tracking device. I am guessing this means he was not the one to write the note, then. It was F.

Ye-ri gets attacked.

Min-ho and Do-shik arrive at the warehouse, sirens blaring (Ji-hoon's car is already there).

Ye-ri's head gets wrapped tightly with duct tape (okay, and at this moment I'm thinking how frigging scary that must have been for this actress)
Kyung-tae just stands there, besides the struggling Ye-ri, when Ji-hoon runs in. He looks at the scene in front of him and slowly raises his gun. Kyung-tae lifts his head. It's the first time we see his creepy, corpse-like face. The two men just stare at each other for a long, long time, a half-smile frozen on their faces.
But then, Ji-hoon gets distracted by the sound of Min-ho and Do-shik arriving. And F flees! Ji-hoon pulls the trigger, once, misses ... points again, and two, hits F in the leg. Man down! But not for long ... F gets up and hobbles out. Ji-hoon wants to follow, but then he pauses ... and looks back at duct taped Ye-ri in her chair. Then he looks at the fleeing F. Then back at Ye-ri who is struggling against the rope. Then down .... then back at the feeling F. And he raises his gun again and goes after Kyung-tae, ready to kill! Bastard! (Very sexy bastard! Love the black leather outfit ... ) 
At that moment, Do-shik runs up behind him and tackles him to the ground, just as he fires. He misses. Do-shik keeps him down, though barely, imploring him that he cannot kill him, while Ji-hoon struggles to free himself, and keeps reaching for his gun. It's a really heart-wrenching scene. So well played.
Min-ho runs to Ye-ri and unwraps her face and unties the rope around her hands. She falls to the floor, terrified.

Do-shik hugs a raving Ji-hoon tightly, very tightly, and says: "Calm down! Calm down! I know your feelings! I understand, Ji-hoon". And Ji-hoon answers: "Can you really understand? I don't even understand!" and he pushes Do-shik off and runs out, after Kyung-tae. Do-shik and Min-ho follow! And leave poor Ye-ri alone? They are all bastards!

Kyung-tae drives off in the police car (don't tell me they left the keys in the car?!) and Ji-hoon follows in his car.
Ye-ri sits on the cold floor ... and says to herself, almost surprised: "I could breath. He didn't warp it tightly". And while he was standing her, Kyung-tae spoke to her:
"I should have forgotten. I should have made myself forget. Min-hee ... I killed her. Tell him to forget. Even if he can't truly forgot. Even if it's fake ... tell him to forget"
She leaves this terrible place (visibly shaken) and hauls a taxi outside. She calls somebody and asks that they look into the identities of Kim Min-hee and Song Kyung-tae again. They could be false names. 
A car chase, with a somewhat meditative feel to it. They race each other, but Ji-hoon does not seem desperate to catch up. From his voice over, we learn why:
"That's right. It doesn't make sense that our meeting has an audience. You whom I have waited for for 7 years - and me. At this moment, I am craving for you. We'll need the right destination. I need a little more time. All this time I've waited to meet you and my soul has become rotten. But there's something I didn't prepare. When I meet you ... what should I do?"
Kyung-tae stops the car and gets out. Ji-hoon is close behind. They are on a very long river bridge, which seems to be under construction.
They reach the end: it breaks off, incomplete. And there is yellow tape ... ironically (and certainly deliberately, knowing this show) it looks very much like the tape the police uses

What follows is very, very important, so I am going to be very detailed about the dialog.

Kyung-tae turns around and starts speaking to Ji-hoon in his soft voice. He taunts him, what now, Ji-hoon? "You won't save me, right?" he says. "I am sorry", Ji-hoon replies. And this crazy man starts laughing creepily and says Hee-joon asked the exact same thing of him, begging for her life - and he answered the same, as Ji-hoon just did.
And Ji-hoon pulls the trigger ... and shoots him in the shoulder. And the leg again. Kyung-tae goes down.
Cut to Ye-ri entering Kyung-tae's creepy apartment. She gets a phone call and the guy on the other end confirms: Kim Min-hee changed her name and identity. She was nobody else than the younger sister of the Daejeon murder victim (See? I knew the lost sister had significance!). And Song Kyung-tae ... he is the brother of another F-case murder victim. He quit his job in 2004 and started targeting the police as a news reporter.

Back on the bridge. Kyung-tae says: "Let's end this. Now, you can end your never ending guilt". And he taunts and provokes Ji-hoon some more, about his guilt and shame for not being able to protect his woman. And he mocks him: "What will happen to you after you kill me? Will anything be left of you after your revenge? Finally - the end of you" He puts his fingers at his temple as a mock gun and pulls the trigger. "We're the same, didn't you know?"
Cut to Ye-ri at the apartment, finally putting it all together. Song Kyung-tae is not F. F killed his sister. No, Kyung-tae was chasing F, just like Ji-hoon. But Kyung-tae killed Hee-joon. That is something they never ever though of: The person that killed Hee-joon wasn't F - but someone else, mimicking F.

There is a newspaper clip on the wall. It describes that incident in front of the police station, when Ji-hoon pushed The Mom away. As Ye-ri ruminates and the camera moves around in the frozen picture, gliding over everybody there, we hear the shouts of The Mom, over and over: "Would you be able to close this case if it were your own daughter?". And the camera stops at Kim Min-hee and Song Kyung-tae, who are there, too. The cries of the desperate mother and the determined look on their faces makes it clear what happened at this moment. A terrible plan was formed: what to do so that the police would open the case again? Kill the daughter of the chief of police, in an F-fashion. Get him to open the case up again. And at the same time, use Ji-hoon to find the real F.
Back on the bridge, Song Kyung-tae talks to ji-hoon in really familiar terms, almost tender. He is ready. He lowers his head and cries. And Ji-hoon looks at him for a long time (while we hear again what Kyung-tae told Ye-ri to tell Ji-hoon), but he doesn't shoot. But then, Kyung-tae starts talking about Hee-joon again and the music that they listened to at the moment of her death.

That does it. Ji-hoon pulls the trigger, once, twice ... just as Min-ho and Do-shik appear on the bridge. Too late ...
Ji-hoon walks away, trance-like. Min-ho and Do-shik run to F/not-F who is lying in a pool of blood ... and lifts his head! He is not dead! And Ji-hoon walks away, slowly. Voice over:

"I'm going to keep you alive. Stay alive. From now on, I'm going to start over. I'll show you. I will show you that I can live away from the pain. So you stay alive and watch me be happy. In your pain. From now on, this is your hell."


1 Year Later. We're in a bunker. It's their new offices! (Wait ... did they get them from the NSS, after it was disbanded because Jang Hyuk blew himself to oblivion with a nuke in IRIS2?) Min-ho is there, with a trendy new haircut. Ye-ri, is, too, also looking much sexier. There is an empty glass box ... Do-shik's? And then, there is the boss ... Ji-hoon. Looking very yummy with beginnings of a goatee and a trendy haircut. All three of them look at each other.


Comments and Thoughts

*squeeeeeeeeeeeeeee* oh my god, this was so, so, so, SO GOOD! Granted, it took watching this twice and going over every single detail a third time until I got all the nuances and layers. So clever. Just wow. And because I need some more time to cut through the layers upon layers of meaning, I will write an additional post on the Tape Murder arch a bit later. Stay tuned!
And here it is, the post!