Special Affairs Team TEN 2 - Episode 11 (Recap)

And so it begins ... the beginning of the end. This is Part 1 of the final and it is no easy ride! I will be honest, parts of TEN2 have been mildly disappointing for me (many of the "filler" episodes were only okay and not particularly great). In particular, I take issue with the fact that we haven't really gotten much character development for a while now. Sure, the team interactions remain cute, I am utterly in love with Ji-hoon, and I would adopt Do-shik and Min-ho and Ye-ri anytime, but I fear the writer(s) have been a bit too lazy in between. And what about F??? That is the biggest surprise for me ... the final? Not about F at all. But still very, very good. 

Special Affairs Team TEN 2 - Episode 11
박민호 납치사건 Part 1 - Park Min-ho's Kidnapping

We are in the corridor of a hotel - or is it an "establishment"? I am not entirely sure, but I am sure about the screams and the shots that are fired: many of them. A crime is in the making... 

With Vivaldi playing in the background, Yeo Ji-hoon is looking out into the night (not bad, the view from his apartment). F-cases material is on the table. Do-shik is alone in a pojangmacha, with two bottles of soju. He turns his head as a police car, sirens on, rushes past. Ye-ri is in her car, stopping in front of a red light, thinking deep thoughts. The police car rushes past her, too, and she looks up and after it. Where is Min-ho? Not there ... We see an abandoned car, emergency lights blinking, door open, on an empty street somewhere in the outskirts of Seoul. This is the moment where we go: OH SHIT.
Do-shik and Ye-ri watch Ji-hoon brood up in his glass office ... when police-helper woman comes up the stairs with a package in her hands, claiming it was Min-ho that sent it. Ts, when he hasn't even shown up today, Do-shik grumbles. But he was at the offices investigating something until 2am, police-helper woman says ... though she doesn't know what. When she turns to go back down to her desk, she suddenly does remember, though: F! Yes, he was looking at material labeled "F". Oh yeah, we know what that is, don't we ... 
That certainly gets everyone's attention. And then, Do-shik opens the package ... and reveals a cell-phone. He switches it on. And .... screams. 
There is a video on it with a beaten-up, bloody and tied Min-ho, looking very miserable. My heart clenches. He has a piece of paper in his hand and starts to read from it: "Find the real murderer of the Majang Room Salon case. Send the results to tonight's 9 o'clock news. If you fail to find out ... I will die". And the video ends with Min-ho being hit very hard over the head. Ye-ri starts to cry and I'm about to, too.

All for One

The three TEN Team members are in Ji-hoon's car, rushing to that crime scene. Do-shik intently studies the kindap-video. Ji-hoo looks at his (Cartier) watch: It is 10am. Ye-ri, who has been making phone calls, confirms that the murder at Majang last night happenend around 1am: A male and a female were shot. The kidnapping video was filmed at 4:25am. Min-ho left work at 2am and never made it home - so he was kidnapped on the way there, most likely shortly after 2am.
Do-shik notices that the handcuffs on Min-ho are handcuffs only the police uses; and they are not Min-ho's - his are at the office. That means the kidnapper is a cop - and one that knows them well at that. Ji-hoon thinks he deliberately picked Min-ho among them, going for the weakest. And Do-shik adds, bitterly: If it hadn't been for that F-nonsense, he wouldn't have stayed so late. And all of this wouldn't have happened. He suddenly tells Ji-hoo to stop the car. He is going after the kidnapper - this is all for one. They need to fight with all they have, together. Man, this is so different than what we had only a few episodes ago ... And he gets out, hauling a taxi. Ji-hoon and Ye-ri drive on ... to the crime scene.
Boss-boss is really surprised when Ji-hoon turns up. They don't need to be here, he says, the case is already closed. But Ji-hoon and Ye-ri go in anyway, after briefly glancing at the report another police officer is writing.
Another familiar face is there and one that I like to see cause she's awesome: Autopsy Lady. Ji-hoon who scans the room with his eyes notices a total of 6 bullets. One right next to his feet. A missed shot, so he was either nervous or excited. Plust, 5 random shots. It looks like the work of an amateur. But Autopsy Lady tells him that the two killing shots are quite accurate: in the heart and into the neck artery. Ye-ri notices some red and black stains on a cloth that is lying around - did somebody whipe off some blood? And what about the black stain? Let it be checked, Ji-hoon says.
Boss-boss comes in and orders his Ace Detective out. He shows him a video of a guy coming out of the house and some people (who are filming this) commenting on the gunshots. The suspect is Ji Jin-hyuk. He was filmed by a bunch of policemen, doing a special investigation - but not on him, on Lee Byung Man. That's the now dead guy. He was a corrupt cop that leaked information and took bribes. He had an affair with the other victim, the now dead woman. 
Do-shik arrives at the abandoned car that was reported not too long ago. He notices the lack of CCTV at that spot and how empty it is around here in general. The kidnapper does not seem to have been an amateur. There is no evidence Min-ho was forced out of the car - so he probably walked out on his own. The reason seems to be a fake accident - there are traces of broken glass behind the car, and pieces of the headlight of the car that hit him. But where did the kidnapper go from here?

Do-shik visits an acquaintance of his, another cop who is eating lunch, and throws a plastic bag on the table. He wants to hear about car type, year, color ... as soon as possible! The other cop is a hit&run specialist (and complains loudly about Do-shik's rough behavior).

Ji-hoon and Ye-ri go to Ji Jin-hyuk's house next. There's a lot of stuff on the floor, I guess it happened when they tried to arrest him. Ji-hoon notices bullet holes in the wall near the window. Ye-ri comes in and tells him that she discovered something: The special investigation guys claim that the suspect shot through the window, but the neighbours tell a different story. They heard two gunshots, and THEN they heard the window shatter.

At this moment, Ji-hoon's phone rings (somebody could do a MV with all the phones ringing in this show ... would be a very long video) and it is Autopsy Lady. She has analyzed the cloth. The black stain found on the cloth was shoe polish; and it seemed the suspect wiped blood stains from his shoe. Clue! The killer wore dress shoes. But the one that is being blamed, Ji Jin-hyuk, wore tennis shoes. He is being framed! And Ji-hoon's face turns more troubled than usual ... the bullets near the window are an indication that they do not have arrest in mind, these special investigation guys ... they want to kill him.

도마뱀 - Lizard

Do-shik is checking out construction sites within a two hour distance from the abandoned car (kidnapping after 2am, video made after 4am). There are six of them. His cop friend calls him: The car he is looking for is a Black Sonata - there are hundreds of those in Seoul! But Do-shik says certainly not that many between 1am and 4am in that specific area: get the effin number plate.

Ji-hoon storms into Boss-Boss' office. Angrily. Yumyumyum. He confronts him about the framed guy and shows him the ransom-movie with Min-ho. Boss-boss is shocked. What's Ji-hoon's plan? Ji-hoon says they'll find him. By 9pm? That's impossible, Boss-boss says. But Ji-hoon didn't mean the kidnapper ... he meant the true murderer. But Boss-Boss is adamant Ji Jin-hyuk is the real murderer. Ji-hoon begs him not to release this to the press yet. And he asks him to help - or stay out of it.
Ye-ri is still at the suspects apartment and sneaks into his car behind a police officer's back, looking for clues. In the glovebox, she finally finds something: unregistred phones. A guy from the special unit appears outside the window and tells her gruffly to get out - they need to take the care away to investigate. She does get out, all smiley, but she secretly takes the phone with her.
What they don't see, but we do: There is somebody on the rooftop, watching them. Hey, it's that Do Hoon dude from Cruel City! Haha, it totally is, but it also is Ji Jin-hyuk. He has been watching his apartment for a while, it seems. And he doesn't look happy as he drinks some cold water. Let's not turn this into a drinking game. Cause there's lots of cold water that is consumed in this episode. What if it were soju?
Do-shik has found the place where Min-ho was filmed. It is the perfect place to bring a kidnapped person without having to fear discovery. Do-shik is sure now: The kidnapper is clever and also dangerous. And he knows this area really well. His car-specialist friend calls. They have found the car!
Ji-hoon is also asking favors from someone, secretly, on a rooftop. Seems to be a guy from internal affairs. He learns that the Lee Byung Man case has been open for a whole year, but there are little to no results so far. The other guy also thinks they want Ji Jin-hyuk dead. Something is not quite right with this case - and he warns Ji-hoon not to get involved: It is a Pandora's Box. As he gets into his car and drives away, we see that the secret meeting hasn't been all that secret: somebody is watching them!
Do-shik is now where the kidnapper's car was found! There are no clues inside, so he opens the trunk. There are many bottles of water in there ... and a bloody cloth. Do-shik heaves a deep sigh of relief. The car-specialist thinks he's crazy - they have absolutely no clue where the guy went from here! But Do-shik is glad that they are moving together. Cause that means he needs Min-ho. And Min-ho is clearly alive - a dead man does not need that amount of water. At closer inspection, the water bottles contain a clue: the prize tag. And Do-shik tells his buddy to call him as soon as a stolen car report from that area comes in!
Ji-hoon drives into a parking lot and then goes into a building. A guy (black clad - from the special investigation unit?) is following him up the stairs cautiously, getting clues from his buddy in the car where Ji-hoon is in the building. Ji-hoon goes to the roof. When the Black Suited Guy follows him there cautiously, Ji-hoon attacks him and holds him at gun point. He says: "the criminal wore your kind of shoes". But the guy pulls out an ID tag - he is a prosecutor.

판도라 - Pandora

Ye-ri is in a cab, looking for more clues in the stolen phones. And there are some: Lee Byung-man's number is on it. So, Ji Jin-hyuk and Lee Byung-man knew each other and they even talked yesterday, using the unregistered phones. And: there is a picture of a girl on one of the phones. Her name is
Ryu Mi-ho. She is the girl who was going to reveal all of Lee Byung-man's secrets (the crown witness). But she is missing! The prosecutor tells Ji-hoon that she was scared and called their offices. That gets Ji-hoon's attention ... not the police but the prosecutors? Yes. Because she knew that bay boy Lee he was associated with someone in the police. And she also knew that Lee Byung-man killed somebody.

Do-shik is drinking water in a realtor's office. Is all this drinking product placement? Man, I'm getting thirsty ... better get some water. He is asking the guy there about places where there is no CCTV - and where they sell water.
Ye-ri is on the trail of the missing woman, Mi-ho. She is seeing her foster family and learns that Mi-ho has been away from home for a week, right after that detective took her. What? Detective?!

Ji-hoon calls Ye-ri (must be the first time I witness this?) and let's her know that there was a witness for Lee Byung-man, a young student. But Ye-ri already knows and is several steps ahead of him. Take that, smarty pants! This woman is your match! She tells him that Lee Byung-man sent a picture to Ji Jin-hyuk to find her - and Jin-hyuk did indeed find her and took her from her home. That's where the trail ends. If only they knew what was in the Pandora's Box that this girl threatened to open, they would know what to look for!

Do-shik is haunting the back alleys with no CCTV and goes into a little shop to demand cold water. I'm guessing he's been doing that for a while, in a lot of shops. And bingo: the ahjumma says she doesn't have any. Cause somebody bought it all! Wait ... this guy? He shows her a photo of Jin-hyuk. Yes! It was him! He drove off, after asking her directions for Incheon.

Poor Do-shik runs (I say poor because he has a lot of running to do and it looks like quite an effort) to a control room to look at CCTV coverage from the street to Incheon. But they guys come up empty handed: there is nothing, not even 40-50 minutes back. Hm .... oh wait! Do-shik gets it. the guy hasn't left at all! He deliberately planted false information to shake a possible pursuer.
And indeed, Jin-hyuk is still very close to where the kidnapping happened, driving up a hill. He gets out, takes a bottle of water from the backseat, and opens the trunk ... to reveal our cutie Min-ho! He is all bloody, but not bad otherwise. The kidnapper is joking that this is a hotel (cause of the big trunk) and Min-ho tells him to ask the room service for some medicine.
The Kidnapper finds it noteworthy he is in the mood to kid around - and let's him know that he has no intention of killing him (good!) - if the team moves quickly, he can even go home tonight. But Min-ho says they cannot do it without him. They can help him, together! The fact that he chose him as a target means that the kidnapper has some kind of trust in the team! But the kidnapper won't have it and slams the trunk shut.

카멜레온 - Chameleon

Do-shik in a taxi when his car-police-buddy tells him that the missing car report came in: It is an Old black Grandeur. They're searching for its location.

Ji-hoon is back in Boss-Boss office. Fuming. Man, he is so hot when he does that. But ... Boss-Boss isn't in. Nobody knows where he is.

Ye-ri is talking to a friend of Mi-ho's - the last person the missing girl sent a text to. She told that woman to call "The Annoying one". Who is that? The girl tells her that he is a guy, somebody that always looked out for them. But she didn't call the guy cause she didn't want him to worry. Does she know who this guy is? She does. She even has a business card. And he is ... a detective.
Do-shik is where they 2nd stolen car has been found! He sends the taxi away and cautiously goes towards the car. We see that another black car is coming up the driveway. Do-shik knocks on the trunk, calling out Min-ho's name ... but no answer.
He goes into the motel that the parking lot belongs to and asks, after brandishing his badge, in which room the guy with the black car is staying in. The woman at the reception tells him it is Room 302 - but at this very moment, a whole army of black clad men in suits and with guns drawn enter the place. Do-shik runs after them and busts into the room right behind them.

He shouts at guy in charge (cameo by the awesome Sung Ji Roo) and demands to know what's going on and why the eff there are so many guns! The other guy states calmly that the other person is armed and Do-shik is told who they are: The Internal Investigation team. One guy (who also was at the crime scene earlier with Ji-hoon and Ye-ri) remarks how well the suspect hid all his traces in here, but Do-shik knows better: He never came. It is all planned - he knew they were coming and he is fooling them.

And indeed: Ji Jin-hyuk he is watching them from the rooftop of an adjacent building
Later when it is night, the kidnapper stops the car in a park. Min-ho is stirring and waking up as he opens the trunk. The guy stuffs cloth into his mouth to muffle his screams and takes out garden scissors. He doesn't seem all too happy about having to do what comes next, but he grabs Min-ho's hand, then the index finger and ... cuts it off.

He sends it to the TEN Team on ice.
Ji-hoon is with Boss-Boss. The finger is a sign that the Kidnapper still wants them to chase after him; he doesn't yet want to kill Min-ho. But they need time. Ji-hoon tells Boss-boss what he found out until now and once again makes clear that Ji Jin-hyuk is not the murderer, though certainly affiliated with this case. Boss-Boss, who has been seeing people in the meantime in order to help as much as he can, tells Ji-hoon to find him before the prosecutors - cause if he doesn't, it'll get very embarrassing for the police. But for that, too, Ji-hoon needs time - they only have one hour left. He asks Boss-Boss for a fake press release.
And he looks out the window, at the moon, and he says: "The moon empties everything to become full once again - I'm also going to put everything on the line this time." And smiles a little smile at Boss-Boss as he leaves.

Ji-hoon is on the phone with Jin-hyuk (who is on a pay phone). So ... who called whom and why? This is not explained. But oh well. Who cares, really. Ji-hoon tells Jin-hyuk that they got the real culprit; and that he confessed about putting blame on Jin-hyuk. He also lies that there will be a major investigation to fight the corruption in the police force. Jin-hyuk will not be on that list to be investigated. Let's meet. Jin-hyuk says okay - but he doesn't trust anybody. They need to come to the place where he left Min-ho's car. And if something goes wrong ... he'll really go crazy. 
Ji-hoon and Do-shik wait in the car. 4 minutes til 9pm. Ye-ri calls (she's with the guy Ji-hoon met on the rooftop): The guy that was close to the missing girl is Ma Suk-gi, 24 years in the police force, currently in the international investigation team. He was also the one filming on the night of the crime outside, catching Jin-hyuk when he came out - and the one with the gun at the hotel. They do not know where he currently is.

Do-shik points ... A car is coming. It's Jin-hyuk! The men stare at each other through the windshield when the 9 o'clock news come on. The top news of the day is that the culprit for the Majang crime has been arrested: and we see pictures of a guy with his jacket over his head being led away in handcuffs. The kidnapper seems satisfied and gets out of the car. Our two TEN teamers get out as well. They face each other...
Where is Min-ho? Ji-hoon demands to know. But Jin-hyuk tells them that he doesn't even trust his own mom. Min-ho is safe, so don't worry ... but he wants some insurance. If something happens to him, they know he's dead, right?
At this moment, NOOOOO!!! another car arrives ... and out comes a totally crazy Ma Suk-gi! He starts shooting immediately, thankfully he misses, but Ji Jin-hyuk flees, with Ji-hoon on his tail, while Do-shik wrestles the crazy cop to the ground.

Not much further, Ji-hoon loses him. He screams in frustration. This is another one of those "Oh shit" moments, people.
They have Ma Suk-gi in the investigation room. He is not talking. The bastard ... and Do-shik says, gravely: "Yeo Teamchang ... I think Min-ho is in danger..."
oh no, oh no, oh no ... And Ye-ri comes back, almost in tears. What happened?

Min-ho kneels on the ground. The Kidnapper is loading his gun with ammunition from a security guard he hit over the head earlier. Min-ho finds his ID in his back pocket. He takes it out, looks at it - and smiles a little sad smile ... The kidnapper points his gun at him.
Min-ho's father sits on the sofa. Suddenly, a ghost-Min-ho appears behind him on the stairs. He tells his father to come out of this hell now. A shot rings ... the ghost Min-ho disappears and the father looks up, disturbed by the sound. A sound?
And at the hill top ... smoke is coming from the gun ... and Min-ho is falling to the side. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!! Min-ho!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
The TEN team looks at CCTV footage. It is the kidnapper, on a motorcycle ... alone. Why is he alone? Do-shik asks, panicked. And Ye-ri tells them that 2 hours ago, there were reports of shots that were fired. In the same area that footage is from. And tears well up in their eyes as it sinks in what this must mean ...

Thoughts and Comments:

If you've killed Min-ho, you OCN people, I'm coming to Korea to kick your asses!