04 May 2016


Pied Piper 피리부는 사나이 - Episode 15 (Recap)

Posted by Kakashi Sensei on May 04, 2016
This is the penultimate episode but oh man, this drama shows no signs of slowing down - quite the opposite. Of course, our villain has planned a grand finale and it's grand indeed: The message and the impact.
Trotwood: "Impact." Did you choose that word on purpose?
Uhm, yes? 
Jaehyus: :-D
JoAnne: Seriously, though, if this gets any more suspenseful, how will we stand it?

Episode 15

"Nobody paid attention to the voice of the powerless. Therefore, I decided to deliver the truth - and in order to punish those responsible, I became the Pied Piper". As soon as Hee-sung is finished with his confession and bows, detectives come forward to arrest him. What a spectacle. What a deliberate spectacle, I'm guessing. He is led out of the building and smiles at Reporter Yoon on the way. Sung-chan is tagging behind, looking... puzzled. Like he cannot really understand what just happened.
Because it is completely anti-climactic. Not at all in the style of the Pied Piper. And poor Reporter Yoon. I can't tell though what her expression conveys.
She's such a pawn.
I would totally watch the news at night if this kind of stuff was happening. As for Yoon... I don't think she's even a pawn. She has been completely irrelevant to almost everything, which is really something when you consider that she was almost shot on national television.
Once he is at the police station, Hee-sung confesses to everything. The bomb in Chairman Seo's car; he claims he was nearby, ready to press the button, but then the police discovered it before he could act. He killed Jung Soo-kyung, because he did not obey his orders. The hostage situation at the restaurant that killed Sung-chan's fiancée and Team Leader Oh - it was him. The bank robbery - yes, him behind it. The TNN hostage incident - him. The attempt to blow up the broadcasting station - his doing. The sarin gas attack - yes, that too. Well, I must say ... that's quite a record.
Like I said before. He had the potential to be great. Can you imagine him planning tactical maneuvers for defense systems and security? Can you imagine him planning out better ways to do food distribution? Both he and Soo-Kyung had/have mad skills.
Wasting all those skills on evil psychotic crime, sheesh.
At this point I wouldn't be surprised if he was behind all the missing Korean socks.
A short time later, the new Commissioner introduces "just a government official", a "Director Go" to Sung-chan, who suggests that the Negotiation Team should get some extra days off for their great effort. Ah, but Sung-chan is still not at ease. He wants to investigate further, into Hee-sung's motives - but Director Go wants to handle this as quietly as possible. Meaning: he wants it under the rug as quickly as possible. Who is this guy?!
And once again, why? To me this was one of the few weaknesses in the script (and the only weakness in this finale sequence). What is the point of this secrecy now? you would think they would want to create a big spectacle or keep digging until every trace and link was wiped clean even if they didn't want to that part to get out. He is also not a rookie. He should know from experience that this can't be over now.
This is normal, actually. Whoever is in charge, basically the bureaucracy of any organization, wants everything back to neutral ASAP. 
I was convinced that this guy would be the real Piper.
The work of the Negotiation Team seems done ... they're just answering phone calls at the office. And Myung-ha? Just like Sung-chan, she's puzzling over Hee-sung's behavior. Why would he reveal his identity like that? Because he's nuts - and ten steps ahead of the Negotiation Team. Team Leader Han comes in to tell them about their vacay days and to go home and relax.
He seems uncomfortable about it, too, but he's not going to deny his wife a vacation. 
She's got those red panties.
Downstairs, Myung-ha runs into Sung-chan. They're kindred spirits alright - they don't even need to speak to understand each other.
Just don't hook up.
You're just afraid she'll have messy hair again.
They go out for some food, but this is no celebration. They sigh and feel uneasy... the man making his confession like this? Something is not right. He looked way too comfortable, considering he planned all this for a decade and went out with such a whimper.
Agreed, weird.
The next day, Myung-ha and Sung-chan come to the office together... where they find Choi and Jo. No stomach for vacation days? Haha, I heart you all. (I am seriously going to miss this team).When asked what they are doing there, Sung-chan and Myung-ha kinda act embarrassed. I do wonder why that is. Hm. Hmmmmmmmm.
No. Stop this now.
Just once? You can't let them just once? (but that actually wasn't why.)
Well, maybe it's just because they're going to do something illegal next? They go to Hee-sung's investigation room, which is guarded by Director Go's men. Time for Sung-chan's old "let me call your superior"-trick! It works every time, doesn't it .... and Choi, whom he calls this time too, doesn't get it, every single time, too.
He so should've called Jo. He seems to get it, and he's not even on the phone.
I loved Jo's grin.
And I loved Sung-chan's. He wins the gif contest
Hee-sung is quite annoyed to be bothered by Sung-chan again - or by anyone, for that matter. Hasn't he already confessed? Sung-chan voices his suspicion: this "last" coup of his, that's just not like him. Where was he really when everybody thought he was at the hospital? Instead of answering, Hee-sung gets up and steps real close to the one-way mirror. And then he starts whispering something to Myung-ha. It's: "It has started".
This was creepy. It's not just that he knew she was behind the two-way mirror (who wouldn't? She and Sung-chan would, of course, be together here), but it was like he could really see her through the glass.
Ewwwww, unnghhh, gaaaahhh!
It seemed very antagonistic, given he's protected her all along.
That's not good... The team minus Team Leader Han (who is the only one taking the extra vacation days together with his wife) tries to find out what he did in the four hours between leaving the TV station and reappearing there before his arrest. They settle on: he met with some minions to plan whatever he is planning. Myung-ha suggest they should check Underground and behold! Underground has been hacked and there's a post, saying that the Piper's next and final target will be Seo-Joon. In order to give Chairman Seo the worst of all pains: the pain of losing someone close.
This Eye-for-an-Eye Psycho! Seriously, I loathe him so much. Good thing I'd never recognize him in real life.
I wonder if Seo Joon will feel betrayed like Soo-kyung might have in that split second before he died?
Well, Sung-chan informs the Chairman about that and because BiL Kang also confirms that Seo Joon's personal info has been leaked and is all over the Internet, the owner of K-Group panics and orders his son to be flown out of the country immediately. The company private jet is currently undergoing maintenance, so that he has to fly on a normal plane (though an airline owned by K-Group).
Was this part of the timing or did Pied Piper have a hand in this?
My guess is the Pied Piper set it up.
Maybe he had two plans - one for the private jet, one for a commercial flight. There could be all kinds of dormant contingency minions out there.

Also on that plane? Team Leader Han and his wife, so happy to be going on a little trip to Shanghai without their baby. Also there... a chubby kid with glasses and headphones. You know when the camera lingers that something is up... Myung-ha and Han Ji-hoon get a chance to talk briefly before the plane takes off, but all she gets through to him is that Seo Joon seems to be the target of the last Piper attack. He doesn't quite understand her when she says they should stop the plane and even though he seems a bit worried when the plane takes off, he also cannot do much, can he.
I remember saying out loud at this point that if Team Leader Han and unni (what is her name?) die, I'm going to flip tables. I love how the show makes viewers have an immediate stake in the events.
No one feels for poor young Seo Joon?
Sung-chan tries to get another chance to talk to Hee-sung, this time with the knowledge that YES, he is indeed planning something else, but Director Go blocks him completely. How frustrating! On the plane, the kid with the glasses asks for some wine and then ... starts executing code on his computer. Oh holy moly. Suddenly, the plane makes a sharp right turn.
Maybe Director Go is a minion?
Whatever happened to airplane mode, Chubby Minion? Huh?
Director Go isn't quite as incapable as he might have thought, so he does ask Hee-sung about "that plane" that Sung-chan just mentioned, but Hee-sung remains as cool as Jon Snow's body before ... never mind, and says: I will only talk to Lieutenant Yeo Myung-ha. Director Go is... are you crazy, you'll get nothing blabla when his phone rings. And he gets intel on the plane that deviated from its route. Which is, oh SHOCK, heading towards Seoul. To... K-Tower. The headquarters of K-Group.
Yuck, so creeeeeepppiieeee!
I was distracted thinking about K-Tel Records. I'm sorry.
Director Go runs to fetch Sung-chan and Myung-ha. The former to join him in a special command room full of people from the "relevant agencies", the latter to talk to Hee-sung. Sung-chan takes Choi with him and has Sergeant Jo go with Myung-ha. Choi's reaction when he sees the "command room": Heol. Haha, seriously, how did they all get there so quickly?!
It made me wonder whether they were planning to look into Pied Piper more than they said and just wanted the negotiation team off the case.
Well, it's Seoul, so there's certainly a disaster response team that would come together within the govt. agencies very quickly. You know, North Korea, ever present threat, all that.

Well, luckily for them, they have Team Leader Han on the plane!
Well, when you say it like that, it seems so coincidental and contrived, but I know I did not feel it at the time. I kept thinking what bad luck for them. I didn't even care about Seo-joon at this point. I just wanted Han and wife to be fine and have a freaking vacation. I mean anybody with a baby needs a vacation!!
They get him on the phone and they exchange info. Important: find the Pied Piper's minion, who is most likely on the plane.
Find him and crush him like a bug!
Myung-ha is with Hee-sung, and she has no understanding for his murderous ways. Seo Joon is a kid and like him, there are tons of innocent people on that plane! But to Hee-sung, there are no innocent people. Everybody who looks away and does not go up against injustice is not innocent. He wants to make the public experience pain to make them realize that they should care. Forgetting and ignoring victims of injustice is a sin. And no, he won't help those "innocents". How could he? He's locked up here.
Such a harsh view, Hee-sung. By that standard, you should kill yourself first since you were part of that whole Newtown debacle on the wrong side.
I don't think he intends to come out of this free and clear, exactly, but killing himself first wouldn't accomplish anything, in his view.
On the ground, Choi confirms that it's possible the plane is being hacked by somebody on the plane.
This is a suggestions that Director Go rejects. Who is this guy. Has he no imagination? Did he not see the movie War Games? Of course, the plane can be hacked. I remember at the time, I was so upset that they were even debating this possibility.
Uhm, what about that Comang hacker, Sung-chan asks? Yes, that's a high probability, Choi thinks, so they tell Team Leader Han to look for a young male, mid-twenties, and tell him which passengers fit that description. Only three, in fact. Team Leader Han approaches the one guy first, which gives the real hacker (yes, it's Comang!) time to hide his laptop.
Smug shit.
In the investigation room, Hee-sung tells Myung-ha that it's out of his hands anyway. It's in fact the public who will determine where the plane is headed. Pompous git. Seriously, he's so pompous, and he's a git. Brother-in-law Kang arrives in the command room - Director Go asked for the person in charge of the airline.
Who called him? I hate him the most of anyone on this show. He has no redeemable qualities at.all. I wouldn't have been surprised if he had rubbed his hands together in glee.
No one called him. He inserted himself.
That very moment, the Office for National Security calls Go and tells him they might have to shoot down the plane. Shit. That's every commander-in-chief's worst nightmare.
Up in the air, Teamleader Han identifies the real culprit - because he is the only one who did not spill his drink (ergo: he knew the plane would turn). (Good deductive reasoning Teamleader Han!! Did I say before how he's my favorite? Did anyone guess?) Wow, this hacker is a real piece of work! He just laughs and says he cannot disconnect from the flight system because otherwise, the plane will crash. And he cannot stop the program either. He also says, still laughing, that it'd be fortunate if only the people on this plane died. And he says it loudly enough for several of the other passengers to hear. Han rushes to the front of the plane where the phone is. Sung-chan urges him to get Comang on the phone for him.
I hated this kid like the devil. Just stupid, thoughtless, smug, evil... he's a minion because he doesn't feel like he gets credit for his brains. Not for justice, however twisted... just for himself.
In the meantime, Comang is enjoying himself stirring more shit, but Han grabs him by his shirt and drags him to the phone. The fucker immediately knows he is talking to Sung-chan. He doesn't give a shit about the prospect of being shut down, no, the opposite: he claims he told the Pied Piper to crash it from the get-go. That tells Sung-chan that not all is lost ... it is possible to stop this! And he understands that this decision to where to take the plane is being taken right now. Oh my god, this is just brilliant. There's a "game" on Underground (and on many mirror sites), where people can choose where the plane should hit. Thinking it's a game, of course. Or .... not caring at all, in fact.
Yeah, Comang was creepy. It was like he didn't care that he was going to die at all. He was enjoying the whole thing. Just odd because he didn't seems to have enough hatred, despair, or faith to be on a suicide mission.
Probably on drugs.
Nope. It's the same thing that drives some kid to shoot up a school. A general sense of disconnection from society, a certain level of hatred for being dismissed, and the certain knowledge that you'll be 'famous' however briefly.
Sung-chan suggests they quickly alert the public and ask for their help - they have to prevent it from crashing into K-Tower! But Director Go has different orders: No public, no media! Damn, man ... don't you know these things ALWAYS get out?! Fuuuuck, he even thinks it's much better to shoot the plane down before anyone finds out. WTF!
Nope. Not getting his logic at all. How will people NOT know that a plane got shot out of the sky over South Korea? It's not like they are the middle of the ocean somewhere. Chunks will fall and kill people on the ground as well. None of his ideas are making sense. I know about the shoot-down policy but thinking that they would be able to cover it up without people knowing?
Ha, that's what I thought too. You're not over an ocean, so how will you hide this plane crash?
They aren't attempting to hide a plane crash. They're attempting to hide the situation behind it. They can make up a story that serves their purposes. I can come up with at least a half dozen in far less than a minute. System malfunction; unbalanced hijacker; North Korea; distraught pilot; drunk pilot: the list goes on.
They have 15 minutes until it hits the tower, but there is option 2, a redevelopment district, which will buy them time. It's 40 minutes away. Director Go activates Korea's cyber-terror team to do some hacking of their own - they will try to change the vote, so that option 2 gets the most hits. 
Well that's better than nothing. Are they evacuating that area?
In the investigation room, Hee-sung repeats what this is all about. The people out there, they do not care. They even get annoyed with the victims, when they continue to call for justice. And he asks her whether she can forgive him for killing her parents. She says he was only obeying orders! But he wants to know: who has to take responsibility for it then? The ones who gave the order or the ones who obeyed it? He does not dare to seek forgiveness. He is just trying to prevent any more children from being hurt like she was. And he is sure she wanted this kind of punishment for the evil: he saw it in her gaze when she looked at him on the rooftop. It's what brought him all the way to this point. Ouf.
Wow. He was reading a lot into that one look--a decade of layered meaning.
Being crazy will do that.  
At that moment, she might have felt that way, Myung-ha says ... but not anymore. She understands what he has been going through due to his guilt. But if he stops right now, she will forgive him. Ah, but haven't you heard him before? He does not deserve forgiveness. He wants punishment. If she wants him to stop, she must shoot him.
He wants her to kill him. Specifically her. I think he is ready to die, but I think he thinks it would be true justice (maybe even an honor) if she did it.
Hee-sung is a bit of a pervert wanting this woman he's obsessed with to kill him.
In the control room, they're down to 5 minutes before collision. And the people in the plane realize they're over Seoul. Down in the city, everybody looks up. The fighter jets are in position. Sung-chan begs for another moment. And then, all of a sudden, and in the last possible moment, option 2 has more votes. But is this enough? In the investigation room, Hee-sung asks, with urgency: "Don't you want to save these people?.... Hurry up and shoot me!"
Well you can't shoot a plane down when it's OVER THE CITY, IDIOTS.


I should probably save my breath for the final episode, but OMG THAT WAS AMAZING! From the moment we see Seo Joon turn up in the same plane as Teamleader Han (super convenient for the drama and Sung-chan :) to the cliffhanger-end, it was "damn, damn, damn!" for me. See, ever since 9/11 every country now has a shoot-down policy (I remember the discussions well) - in real life, they would probably have shot it down before it got to Seoul (doesn't that just do the terrorists' work for them?). Not that I believed that would happen here (because this is episode 15, not 16), but before these people are off the plane, I won't rest easily.
I was angry, but it wouldn't have surprised me if they had. This is not a show that is wary about killing people off. the writers have prepared us for that, which is why the tension level is so high. Anyone is this show is expendable.
I actually wondered if they would let the plane crash so that a new Piper could be born.

I keep repeating myself, but I find this show amazingly written and very, very deep. This drama is basically telling us to get out of our lethargy, to stop looking away from the uncomfortable truth and to take injustice seriously even if it does not concern us directly. Wow, I say to that. Yes, Hee-sung is borderline insane (he really should have gotten treatment back then), but who can deny that we are all guilty of this, to various degrees? We all value our comfortable lives above all else.
Yes, we should take injustice seriously. But vigilantism just causes sympathy for the original transgressors.
I don't know that I can agree with that.

To make it worse, the drama shows us two teenagers who gleefully click to see the aircraft explode, hungry for the spectacle, not even caring whether it's real or not - worse, excited at the prospected that it might be.
I was wondering if you were going to include them, and then I couldn't remember exactly if they were in this ep or not and I didn't want to add spoilers. But yes, I thought this was a masterful touch. The idea that we get so used to such violence in games so why would we not just do something this as a lark. Why not go for the biggest bang if it's just a game? 
People used to go home and watch the Iraq war on TV. When it's all happening at a distance, it's just a circus with gladiators.

And we have Comang, maybe as a symbol for a youth who does not give a literal fuck about anything. Die? Yeah, why not. Kill in the process? Cool, bring it on. Hate everyone. Who cares.
Talk about a dumbass. When he loses a leg or suffers severe burns, lets see how much he stops caring.
He was ready to die, then complains that something hurts. Stupid little shit.

And we have the most amazing villain, who does all this, but not for himself. For a child who looked at him, the murderer of her parents. A child who has become a woman and most amazing, is someone who has forgiven and forgives all the time. I don't think Hee-sung can understand this. I am pretty sure he means to die right then and there. By her hand, if possible. He has accomplished all he wanted to accomplish. And now, he wants to die. Go out with a bang. I really hope he won't get his wish though.
Again, wanting to die by a specific woman's hand is really perverted. 
In what way? He feels guilt. He wishes to be punished. It makes sense that he be punished by the person he wronged. I agree that he is wrong in his approach, but you make it sound like it's sexually deviant in some way, and that's not the case at all.
No, his obsession with Myung-ha has nothing to do with perversion. It's like Sung-chan's obsession with her. She is a symbol for both men, a symbol for their guilt. Both want her to give them absolution in some way

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