Another week, another mystery revealed. This week we delve into the school’s security guard’s relationship with Joon-seok’s mom. The show has been dropping hints about the guard knowing more than he let on to the police and Sun-ho’s parents. We finally find out that he had indeed seen Joon-seok and his mom on the scene and also disturbed the site of Sun-ho’s fall by hiding his phone and diary. What happens next is pretty straightforward—there are offers of money, rounds of blackmail, and double-crossing. K-drama laws are pointing towards signs that this won’t end well for either party.
Joon-seok’s mom continues to remain anxious about her crime and Joon-seok’s involvement in Sun-ho’s case being discovered. It probably doesn’t help that she’s losing faith in her son’s version of what happened between him and Sun-ho. Joon-seok constantly reminds her of her crime and like his father, is cold enough to point out that doing what she did on the crime scene was her choice entirely. I mean, he’s not wrong, but would it kill you to show your poor mother some sympathy, Joon-seok? From slipping up in front of In-ha and making her suspicious to constantly having paranoid dreams about Joon-seok trying to kill himself, Eun-joo has no respite. I would feel sorry for her if she hadn’t brought this on herself.
Joon-seok’s father reveals some pretty disturbing and classist views about his position in the society—which is that he forms the top 1% of the society who makes the rules for the rest to follow—and oh, this is exactly the kind of nonsense we’ve heard from SKY Castle’s Professor Cha (Kim Byung-chul’s character), but in a comic tone. If this is how all rich families behave, I send my condolences to anyone who has to cross paths with them.
While Su-ho hadn’t believed Ki-chan’s version of things earlier, something about his story seems to have struck a chord with her because she seeks him out again. Ki-chan is still ostracized from Joon-seok’s group for daring to throw him under the bus, but with Su-ho’s challenge to prove himself, it remains to be seen how desperate Ki-chan is for people to believe him instead of Joon-seok. The Ki-chan-Su-ho dynamic also provides us few of the only lighter moments in the show, which was much appreciated.
I’m so glad that at least one adult in this school full of horrible teachers seems to have a conscience. Teacher Lee’s move of giving out his email to his students to report things anonymously is commendable. He even asks the kids to rant about anything from their situation at home to grades and friends, assuring them that he would keep their emails confidential. Thinking back to when I was a teenager, a gesture like this from a teacher would have been a huge help.
Discovering that Journalist Choi’s interest in covering Sun-ho’s case is less about journalistic integrity and more about paying Oh Jin-pyo back for some old rivalry was a bit disheartening. Will Sun-ho’s family ever come across someone who just wants to help because it’s the logical thing to do? The journalist showing up had made me hopeful before but now I’m just nervous about the effect he will have on the case.
Can we talk about the little heart to heart In-ha and Moo-jin have over soju? Such amazing communication going on in this relationship. Like Joon-ha pointed out in the last episode, they really do balance each other out beautifully. Where he is self-deprecating, she makes him toughen up and when she’s hot-headed, he calms her down. Their musings about how age doesn’t make you an adult and it’s a learning process speaks volumes about their parenting styles. I love how their attitude is to try their best to lead normal lives despite everyone’s belief that their family is ruined because of the incident.
I’ve been going on and on about how Moo-jin needs to lose his pacifist streak, but this episode was a learning experience for me too because I no longer hold that opinion. It’s actually his kindness that wins Dong-soo over and results in their major breakthrough on Sun-ho. Even the simple act of admitting your mistake to your student as his teacher requires a great deal of courage, and I’m sorry Sun-ho’s dad, but I will no longer fault you for it.
And so, after episodes of teasing, we finally get to hear what Dong-hee knows about Sun-ho’s case. I have to admit that in light of the information we already have—which is that Sun-ho most likely did not commit suicide—Dong-hee’s story felt anti-climatic because it lacks any solid leads. On the other hand, however, this is exactly what Sun-ho’s parents needed to hear. So far, they’ve only had their instincts to hold onto, but now they have a solid reason to see this fight through. Sun-ho’s such a good kid—unfailingly kind and honestly a hero for comforting Dong-hee the way he did. He deserves to make out of this mess alive and I’ll be rooting for him all the way with renewed vigor.