14 June 2013


Heartless City (Moojung Doshi) - Episode 2 (A SqueeCap)

Posted by JoAnne on June 14, 2013
JoAnne: First, a replay of the intense furniture factory scenes and then cut to - yes - a group of men on a roof top. We MUST have a drinking game for this. No biggie, they're just hanging Meth Kim off the side.
kakashi: Hello vertigo! o_o (and no, I know how dangerous your drinking games are, JoAnne ... not falling for it again! I still have a hangover from WAML's!)
JoAnne: He gives up Scale's location pretty quickly. I do not blame him. Baksa lays out the new world order, the one in which he runs alllll the shit and Scale just sits around and looks pretty (evil.)
kakashi: Oh my, Baksa is the most evil of all the evil ones - what a turn on! Yes, I do like them mean and angry. And I so believed that they would actually drop this little Meth Kim shit. And they would have. That's how scary they are. Rawr.
JoAnne: We meet Yi Sul, who does not like her name. These days she goes by Lee Jin Sook (Kim Yu-Mi) and we figure out pretty quickly that this woman is one tough cookie dressed in expensive clothing. She certainly is fond of Baksa, because of COURSE, right? And really... he's very smooth, slipping expensive jewelry around her neck like it's no big deal. Their vibe is kind of odd. He calls her Auntie, she wants him to call her Noona which at first I thought was an age thing but...they're very flirtatious.
kakashi: Yes, the vibe is odd-creepy-gross. She is a very greedy type of woman that one. Greedy-creepy. Yikes. I hope she hasn't touched uri Baksa Adeul with her greedy hands. I mean in places that matter.
JoAnne: This is why I deserve him first. ALL of his places matter.
JoAnne: There's a meeting with Baksa, Jin Sook, Soo (he really is cute, isn't he?) and some old guy in a pony-tail. Jin Sook and Soo do NOT like each other. When Baksa confirms that he took down Scale, Ponytail and Jin Sook get weird looks on their faces. Baksa seems to have history and connection with these people but can he really trust them? He lays out the issue: he has the drug factory, but they've got a limited supply. Scale isn't the producer - "Pusan" is behind him and they need to tell him everything they know. Only Soo looks like he's in complete support. Those other two are really squirmy.
kakashi: The meeting just feels so uncomfortable ... a lot of unspoken stuff and a lot of fear there. And I am getting afraid for Baksa and cutie-Soo. I hope they know what they are doing ... they look so young and vulnerable ... I think my heart rate just went into unhealthy territory. I am afraid ... a lot.
JoAnne: He shall henceforth be known as Cutie-Soo.
JoAnne: Cut to a meeting between Safari (Moon Deok-Bae) and 'Chairman.' Safari is quite respectful and the Chairman looks like a rich and cuddly harabeoji but I'm guessing not. He tells Safari he should cut any connection he has to Baksa, like, yesterday. Interesting: even though Safari tells the Chairman that it's not like they were best buds or anything, it appears that he and Baksa go wayyyy back, all the way to Baksa's childhood.
Flashback: Safari gets 'Oppa'd' by hooker after hooker as he walks down a rainy alleyway. He joins a young Baksa playing cards with Jin Sook, who certainly does not look as tasteful as she does these days. It's the night Baksa gets his name, given because he's so good at everything. Jin Sook and Safari are clearly a couple and even though they aren't his parents, Jin Sook is really proud of Baksa and Safari seems fond. Are they raising him? Back in the present, Safari smiles ruefully as his car passes under a sign indicating the direction toward Seoul. Ohhh - was he in Pusan?
kakashi: Auntie was as creepy-greedy back then, hitting on a mere child? Oh my, I am so glad there's a female character that I can hate for how off it is. Definitely not cliché that one. And Safari? Okay, show, you've now hooked me. I guess it's this guy. So nice and smiley on the outside - but so super scary just inches underneath. Run, babies, run! The big, bad wolf is coming!!!
JoAnne: There's a brief exchange between Baksa and Soo which further exposes the bromance and I squee, although I don't really understand their conversation.
kakashi: Keep your hormones under control, JoAnne, I'm trying, too! But I did understand their conversation despite the squeeing. This is what we learn: These two are really close and go way back, as revealed by their little parting ritual. Baksa trusts Soo with his life and Soo wants to protect Baksa, also with his life. This will break our hearts at one stage in the drama, right?! Looking forward to their backstory! And maybe they go take a bath together?
JoAnne: I wanna be the loofah in THAT bath house. But only for that one bath.
JoAnne: They're really adorable, these cute bad guys. Baksa is heading off somewhere and Cutie-Soo is going to babysit Scale and Meth Kim, but he gets distracted by a woman, of course, and leaves his post to go get some. Safari gets on an elevator (in the hotel? OH NO, not Cutie-Soo, no!) and has a phone conversation with Baksa that really freaks Baksa out.
kakashi: I do not like how alarmed Baksa looks when he gets the call from Safari. Not good, not good! Abort mission! Get out! My babiiiiiiies!!!!!!!!!!!!
JoAnne: Mr Not So Calm at the Moment heads back to the hotel, pronto. I squee because our bad guy loves hard. Ah, crap. It's not good for Cutie-Soo OR Baksa. Cutie gets stabbed a few hundred times by Meth Kim...
... and Baksa's driver is an idiot who apparently doesn't check his rear view mirror before making a U-turn on the highway. It's ok though because our hero is DETERMINED. He steals the cop car from the accident scene and somehow miraculously knows which hotel room the bleeding Soo lies in. Baksa piggybacks him off to the hospital and leaves the traitor girlfriend to die on the hotel floor. Serves her right, I say.
kakashi: He made a decision, there, uri Baksa, which is fully understandable. Of course everybody would save his best friend and not some random woman who gave the friend away, however hard she pleads for her life. But now, a few words in the direction of Soo. You idiot! Leave your zipper up, you stupid left anterior cingulate cortex controlled male!!! As for the accident, I think it was planned, most likely by Safari, I'm sure he wanted to take care of Baksa Adeul that way. Speaking of Safari .. he is one scary character. Me likey. Very much. This show is much, much darker than I thought I'd ever get from KDrama ... I guess it's even darker than TEN/TEN2? I get the feeling that something bad could happen to any of the characters in Heartless City - anytime.  
JoAnne: Man, Scale just can't catch a break - back in his chamber of horrors, he thinks everything is all hunky-dory now but Safari and Meth Kim have other plans. Well, really they have Chairman Jo's plans - that must be the guy in Pusan we saw earlier. Scale is out, and the big boss wants the police to believe that Baksa is the head of the conglomerate. Scale should turn himself in to the police and request safe harbor in exchange for information. Hyung Min (I had it a little wrong first episode - but I corrected it) practically wets himself in excitement.
kakashi: Oh, the satisfaction I feel over the humiliation of Scale ... I am an evil woman. I'd SO be on Baksa's team. And I'd be like his right hand or something. Or maybe the left. Soo can be the right.
JoAnne: An only slightly rumpled Baksa (again piggybacking Soo, squeeeeeeeeeee) narrowly avoids capture by the police at the hospital after sitting next to his unconscious and dearly loved friend all night.
kakashi: Come to mamma. I'll give you a hug ... 
JoAnne: Hyung Min lays out the plan for his team and tells them to leave no stone unturned in their search for this new target. Do Hoon's doppelganger is on the tip of my tongue for a second, but I still can't figure it out. Who does this guy LOOK like? It's killing me.
kakashi: Hyung Min looks like Brendan Fraser on a bad day, the Squad Leader looks like Sung Ji-Ru (the cuddly one in Warrior Baek Dong Soo), the one in love with the boring policewoman looks like Oh Min-Seok (the doctor-lover in Nine). Any of those you meant? ((WARNING: do not picture google Brendan Fraser! It's too shocking!!!) 
JoAnne: Those George of the Jungle glory days are long, long, LONG gone.
JoAnne: Hyung Min ends the meeting by announcing to the only other female, Detective Suh, that Kyung Mi will be joining her on the 'information team' from this point on. Cue expected quarrel between lovers. I don't pay a lot of attention, truthfully. Plucky independent woman refusing to be 'protected' by hunky enormous thighs of steel delicious lover, yada yada yada.
kakashi: Thanks to a certain conversation of this lady above (JoAnne) with some other lady named Jules on Twitter last night, I am mightly distracted at the moment and cannot pay attention to this scene between the VBC. The conversation was about this guys' thighs. And the things he could do with these thighs. In a certain situation involving a thing ... erm ... between his thighs. Oh wow, I'm actually blushing now ...  
JoAnne: Bouncy, bouncy, bouncy.
kakashi: JoAnne!!!! There might be kids reading this!!! 

JoAnne: Jin Sook and Safari meet. She doesn't seem happy to see him at all, and it's a little unclear, but it seems she's an active participant in this whole drug business. She warns Safari not to touch Baksa, but their 'negotiations' are interrupted by the announcement of a visit from Baksa himself. Safari just barely sneaks out in time. So it's a secret that she's in touch with Safari, then? Baksa doesn't seem to trust Jin Sook entirely. They do seem to care about each other's long term safety but neither is entirely truthful, and he lets her know that he's aware Safari must have a spy here in Seoul, and wouldn't it make sense if it was the person who had been closest to him for so long? Ha, ha, ha, though, just joking, of course, Noona. He shares information and acknowledges the problem he's facing - connecting with Pusan - but he also instructs henchmen to keep an eye on her as he leaves. And he promises that whoever hurt Soo, he's going to pay back. 
kakashi: Goosebumps. This is GOOD. There's a whole snakepit of connections and distrust and backstabbing. Everybody knows it. That's why Baksa and Soo's friendship shines like the sun in all this ugly darkness. And by the way, thank you for less sad-bored poker face and more mad-worried intensity.
JoAnne: Back at the police station, Scale is totally presenting it as if he always reported to Baksa. He tells Hyung Min he can verify this with the chairman of Donghae Construction, Park Choong Mo, but oop, whaddya know? Park has jusssssssssst committed suicide. There's a big deal press conference because of the connection to the prosecutor's office and the money-laundering investigation. Director Min and Team Leader Ji know they're being lead down a garden path with Park dead and no dirt on Scale, but by whom?
kakashi: Safari's plan is quite good and I like how he starts pulling the strings to bring Baksa down. However, I also appreciate that the police is just a liiiiiittle bit weary of this rather miraculous solution to all their problems. . 
JoAnne: Hyung Min has dinner with Daddy Ji. Omo..he calls him Commissioner. (Side note: Superintendent Mi seems to be called Director Mi this episode, and Head Prosecutor Ji is now a commissioner? I don't pretend to know police structure in Korea, but these titles are not at all analagous to those of my country. If you have info, feel free to share in the comments. For now, I'm going to assume the subs are partially at fault, and for ease I will go with Director Mi and...eh. Daddy Ji. He's either the head of the lawyers or the head of the police in Seoul. Since we know there's more of a connection between these two groups in Korea than a westerner might expect, perhaps that's actually just one position.)
kakashi: I know from KDrama watching (i.e. Prosecutor Princess and Vampire Prosecutor) that Korean prosecutors have the right to investigate themselves (unlike in the States) and the police has to follow the lead of the prosecution. The police and the prosecutors therefore don't like each other much. 
JoAnne: Anyway, Hyung Min wants to know how come Daddy never grabbed Scale. Daddy won't spill the beans unless he starts working as a prosecutor, which Hyung Min swears he will never do. Oh, and there's some issue with a brother that explains some of Hyung Min's Daddy issues. And wait, yes...something about the mom, too. I guess we'll find out later, yes? Outside of the restaurant, I giggle at the way Hyung Min just dismisses Prosecutor Ahn, the sleeze, by rolling up the window on his face
kakashi: Me too! that was hilarious! And only fitting that Mr. Hulk (he looks SO MUCH like the Hulk) has Daddy and Mommy issues. Duh, I still don't like him. Not even THAT much: .

JoAnne: I'm not sure of the timeline, but the world's biggest sad puppy visits a barely conscious rehab patient in the hospital - it's his brother Kang Min, severely brain-damaged by drugs. Well that explains Team Leader's  zeal to bring down this organization, right?
kakashi: Yes. The drama needed to explain why Hulk is so sensitive about the drug stuff. Personal vendetta always works.

JoAnne: We meet another gangster! This is Tooth, or maybe Teeth. Tooth. Although he does appear to have a full set. He's accompanied by a woman, Kim Eun Soo. She's decidedly cooler than Tooth. Tooth's playing it off like he's been in New York, but Kim Eun Soo calls bullshit; she knows he's been in Pusan. Tooth isn't offended - he just says she takes the fun out of things.
kakashi: I want to be like Kim Eun-soo when I grow up. And why couldn't she have been in IRIS2 Instead of Lee Da-hae? 
JoAnne: They've come to visit Safari at Scale's old place and the mood is quite light. I don't know Safari well yet but I'm already thinking that's actually a bad sign. Maybe not, though.  He's got a LOT of drugs for them. Ohhh, I see what this is - they're squeezing Baksa. He and Jin Sook are going nuts trying to find drug to supply their dealers, with no luck. Safari wants Tooth to set something up with them, and they'll tip off the cops - bam. Baksa is done, and Kim Eun Soo's job is to make life difficult for Hyung Min at the same time, apparently. Safari is frighteningly gleeful at the prospect of killing two birds with one stone, and then Kim Eun Soo asks a very pertinent question: who's actually going to bring the drugs to the deal?
kakashi: Evil man, Safari, evil. Leave my Baksa alone :-(
JoAnne: Cut to Safari and Meth Kim, who says 'Lemme get this straight. You want me to take Jin Sook to a place full of drugs, watched by the cops?' Safari assures him that if he does this, eventually Scale's chair will be his. Meth Kim is actually too stupid to be a leader like Scale, but he's also too stupid to realize that. He's greedy and ambitious, though, so he agrees to the plan.
kakashi: I think he is what is called "A goner". Too stupid to survive this cruel city.

JoAnne: Ponytail Dude is sitting with Jin Sook. He's assuring her that some deal looks more amazing the more he looks at it, but as his slimy eyes travel up her body, we know what he's really talking about. These two remind me of Grandpa Leeteuk and the Interfering B****, quite frankly. Tooth comes in and starts spinning some tall tale about great drugs and North Korean triads. When he puts a move on Jin Sook she asks if he'd like to continue being able to wipe his own ass, which makes me laugh. I don't trust her, but she's holding her own in a man's world, at least. She dismisses him, but first provides him a very pretty girl. Somehow the smile on that girl's face, though...not sure about that.
kakashi: I am looking forward to what she has in store for Tooth. I hope it involves lots and lots of pain on his side (doesn't seem to though, says the voice from the future, i.e. kakashi who has already seen eps 3 now)
JoAnne: Wow...it seems that Hyung Min stood his ground. Kyung Mi is definitely on desk duty, and Suh's being kind of bitchy toward her. She goes digging through paperwork, and quickly fixates on something. It's not translated, but I pick out Kim Eun Soo, Seoul, Kangnam, Cheongdam district, stuff about drugs. Yes, I'm thinking guiltily about the language studying that languishes while I avidly watch currently-airing dramas. Ah - what caught her eye was Kim Eun Soo's statement that she is Scale's woman, they're Scale's drugs, and she's supposed to deliver them to Baksa Adeul. Wow, these guys will really go far to set up a sting.
kakashi: At this moment, I dislike this policewoman, whose name I refuse to remember, almost as much as I disliked Mi Do. Okay, I admit that that's a little bit mean. She is trying. And btw, JoAnne: The question is who among us has not put Korean language studies on ice because of drama watching. You are not alone!

JoAnne: The Task Force arranges to interview Kim Eun Soo, and this woman is such a far cry from the woman we just met that I almost don't recognize her.
kakashi: I want to marry her. Evil and awesome. My cup of tea.
JoAnne: The team is peeing their collective pants at the thought of catching Baksa so quickly. Well, except for Hyung Min, who's fixated on the fact that his honeybunny didn't stay safely behind her desk and shuffle paper (this subplot is so annoying, stop it already!!!). In the end, Kyung Mi is going to go meet up with Meth Kim, pretending to be Kim Eun Soo. Meanwhile, the real Kim Eun Soo has most of the guys completely snowed by her frightened, innocent persona. Do Hoon is pretty suspicious. If I don't figure out who this guy is soon, I'm going to be upset. Hyung Min is suspicious too, so he takes a photo of Kim Eun Soo to Scale for verification. Since Safari told him that this would be coming, he does just that - but it's a picture of Detective Suh. OHH, SNAP.
kakashi: There's a brain in that big head! Good! Cause I wasn't sure!

JoAnne: Big yummy doodlebug races back to the station, telling them to not let Eun Soo out of their sight. Meanwhile, Scale reports back to Safari but it doesn't take Safari long to figure out that Hyung Min is smarter than the average bear. My blood pressure is rising steadily. Who is going to die? We end with the discovery that apparently Hyung Min doesn't have a problem with violence against women unless it's HIS woman. Eun Soo does not break cover for even a second...
kakashi: I don't like him at all! He's Herman Munster in disguise, that's what he is! (thanks, Belinda, for pointing this out)

Final thoughts: 

JoAnne: The game is ramping UP, folks. My thoughts are pretty much the same as they were: there are little niggling things that aren't quite right, but the overall package is so right it actually HURTS. Bring on the next episode!
kakashi: I am so glad this did not go further down the cliche-road. And they also managed to introduce good female characters (though so far, the lead(s) remain either absent or super annoying). All the police bits underwhelm me so far - I kept thinking how awesome this drama would have been if it were JUST about the drug business and its snakepits. Drama, rock on! JoAnne, write on! kakashi, gif on! On to the next one!!!

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