Posts Tagged ‘ tv ’

East of Eden, episode 13

Dong Chul tries to get photographic evidence of Attorney Kim’s betrayal. Meanwhile Kim tells Tae Hwan that he thinks DC is on to him.

Dong Chul comes to talk with his Aunt. She tells him to go see DW and make sure he doesn’t desert the army on Ji Hyun’s behalf. She also tells him to come to his mother’s birthday the next day. She also tries to get him to get her a job at the casino. Guk Ja is there and finds the Aunt very amusing. I find the aunt amusing as well (in this scene anyway), when Guk Ja excuses herself, the aunt says ‘you should have done that earlier, can’t you read a situation’. The aunt tells DC that Guk Ja was asking lots of questions about him, and to be careful as casino girls don’t make good wives (Guk Ja was dressed as a dealer). 

Min Hye Rin’s english is excellent. Best on the show, which works out because she apparently teaches english as a second language. She’s teaching them useless things about American football though. Anyway, HR’s mother comes to see her. I think she really cares about HR, she’s putting in too much effort otherwise. It kinda makes HR’s behaviour a little harsh in retrospect. So, HR’s mum has learnt about Ji Hyun, as in that DW already has a girlfriend.  I love Lee Da Hae in this scene (her later scene too actually, subtlety suits her) especially her expression when her mum mentions DW’s girlfriend. Poor HR, for once she can’t retort as she knows DW is indeed in love with another. 

DC visits Ki Sun at her work. It’s nice to see some brother/sister bonding. Ki Sun says that DC and DW share a mind and body. DC corrects her and says the three of them are like one, but he’s just being nice, all his actions prove that Dong Wook is his one and only.  

DC then goes to visit Ji Hyun. She tells him about the baby (aka. his enemy’s blood) and her decision to give up Dong Wook. She also tells him about her mother’s rape. She gives him a letter for DW. She asks whether he will seek revenge on her if she joins Tae Hwan’s family. He doesn’t answer. She then asks if he will seek revenge on her baby. He says the feud will end in this generation. I can’t believe the way DC averts his eyes and can’t even say he won’t hate the baby. Anyway, DC went there to tell Ji Hyun not to give up DW, but leaves thinking it’s best if they separate. 

The Priest takes Ji Hyun to Myung Hun’s house. That priest sucks. What is Ji Hyun thinking? Certainly not of her baby. Last episode I had begun to change my mind about Ji Hyun and now…sacrificing DW and her child for what? Revenge against Chun Hee? Or does she hate herself that much? 

TH doesn’t want JH in his family. Everybody else reminds him of how they let lowly him marry into their family, but it’s Ji Hyun who changes his mind. I still don’t get where Ji Hyun’s mind is at, I hope she’s not going to be like Suzaku from Code Geass, whom continued to make decisions that weren’t logical extensions of his motives. Also, Nurse Yoo really did the Lees a favour by swapping Myung Hun for Dong Wook. 

So, DC visits DW. It’s like when DC visited DW after school that time. Except, DW now wears actually military clothes. The brothers visit their father’s grave and DC flashes back to that tear-inducing funeral. DW’s so adorable, and so in love with his hyung. Anyway, it seems like DC wants to build another Las Vegas over the mining village where they grew up. When they get back to DW’s base, DW asks DC to look after JH. DC tells DW to give her up, but DW says he won’t. DC gives him the letter. Later, DW reads it and is heartbroken. Personally, I think he could do way better anyway. 

Meanwhile, Wang Gun is getting ready to enact his  revenge on Guk, with help from Attorney Kim. DC finds out but is too far away to help so he calls Dok Sa and co. They manage to save Guk but not before he sustains a severe beating. (Q. When did Wang Gun depart ways from the gang? He was the leader and now he’s left by the wayside?). 

So, DC finally arrives and Guk Ja goes off at him for letting this happen. Guk sends them to President Min for some reason. Also, DC finds Guk Ja’s audio diary and hears the entry she made after they first met, unfortunately, he doesn’t hear the more obsessive messages about him that she’s made since.  So Guk Ja and DC go to President Min’s house. Guk Ja stands up quite nicely to HR’s mother, and something DC said convinced Min to cancel his association with Tae Sung Construction. 

Hye Rin rocks up just as they’re leaving. So, it turns out Guk Ja and Hye Rin were friends a long time ago before Guk Ja went overseas. Guk Ja calls her ‘unnie’. The girls exchange pleasantries, but Hye Rin’s eyes are on DC (but despite being obvious about it, Guk Ja doesn’t notice). They don’t get introduced, but it looks like HR’s been thinking about what her mother said about her being a fool to wait around for someone who’s in love with someone else. So, if she can’t have DW, why not that nice boat guy who fixed her shoe and gave her a lift. DC returns her meaningful looks as well. I’m still behind Guk Ja and DC though. 

The episode ends on a random shot of President Guk in hospital. He’s still badly injured, but he manages an evil grin. Is he evil?

East of Eden, episode 12

Why is formatting this thing so difficult?

The reunion continues when DW brings DC home. DC has lead feet again when he sees Chun Hee. CH sees his silhouette and thinks of Ki Chul, but not only is DC’s face completely different, so is his body shape. I simultaneously loved and hated this part. I mean, they drew it out way too long and my head was saying ‘for god’s sake, run and hug each other already’ while I was openly weeping.

The reunion is interrupted by Myung Hun and Wang Gun who have come to demolish the village. Luckily, President Oh (Myung Hun’s haraboji) was ordered to cease the demolition. However, Wang Gun accuses DC of abandoning the gang and fleeing Korea with stolen gold bars. He also says how DC’s been working for professional gamblers. CH hears this and her initial joy at seeing DC again has turned to shame. Also, they cut to a shot of Ki Sun when Wang Gun introduced himself, which was very interesting. Oh, and Myung Hun mentioned how he was always jealous that DW had a brother like DC.

Guk Ja’s really cute. She’s been waiting up for DC and records an audio diary. Today’s entry: I’m so weird, why am I wasting my youth obsessed with a beggar hunting dog.

Hye Rin has another convo with her mother. HR is happy she still gets to live independently. Her mum tells her DW is going to be forcibly enlisted. How random.

DC has a nice moment with his daddy’s birdcage. Also, I love the way DC touched Ki sun’s face when she talked to him. So cute. Anyway, Chun Hee is unhappy with DC. Then the beans are spilled about how DC broke out of prison so he could get the money that saved Chun Hee’s life. CH hates that she’s the reason DC’s life was ruined. The others try to convince her that his life isn’t ruined, but DC pretty much tells her that he’s not going to go back to a straight life. Power is money. Money saved Chun Hee and money saved DW. Money is going to bring down Tae Hwan. Chun Hee disowns him again and tells him to stay away from DW. DW meanwhile, has been dragging his injured self around the house for these convos, and it’s hilarious.

DC returns to Guk’s house and is attacked, but fends off the goons with some nice moves. I really like DC’s fighting style. He was awesome during the almost-demolition scene as well. Anyway, DC sees Guk’s traitor minion, Attorney Kim, right after the attack, which was odd, because Kim wasn’t even trying to hide or anything. It’s like Kim was saying ‘please become suspicious of me Dong chul’.

Meanwhile, the priest comes and tells DW about what happened to Ji Hyun. DW runs to see her, but she ignores his cries. Then, the army turns up to forcibly recruit DW. How did they know to go to wherever the hell Ji Hyun is?

Anyway, then there’s a fight scene. I’m not really sure what’s going on, I think DC’s rescuing members of his former gang, oh, and DC likes to dress in nice suits when he beats people up. After that, he goes and springs (legally, kinda) Dok Sa from prison. Dok Sa’s also being played by the same guy (I wonder if the rest of the gang are also being played by the same guys, because they called DC ‘hyung’, so that’d be odd). Dok Sa calls DC arrogant, and he totally is coming off that way. Don’t be so smarmy DC!

Meanwhile, Ji Hyun is feeling crappy (and pregnant), and DW ‘s in basic training. Then JH talks with the priest. I cannot believe it when the priest calls MH’s rape a misguided act of love. A sin that came from not knowing how to express his love. I was so afraid that the priest’s words were setting up JH’s forgiveness of MH. Thankfully, when she confronts him in the next scene she stands strong. I am so proud of JH. Unfortunately, JH is pregnant, and the priest insinuates that JH, herself, is also a product of rape.

I hate MH. I don’t even find him good-looking anymore. I wish he would stop insisting that he raped JH out of love. I can’t believe he asked JH, while begging for her forgiveness, to save him as he was in pain too and a beast who wanted to be human. I wanted to scream.

So, Guk Ja’s set herself up as a dealer in the casino. Also, DC’s made an unnecessary play against Attorney Kim as it seems Guk’s already on to his dodgy ways. Also, DC’s aunt shows up at the casino to speak to him, but Guk Ja meets her first.

Now it’s to Chun Hee being a stone cold bitch. She tells JH to marry MH and leave DW alone. I don’t blame JH when she tells CH that one day she’s going to feel all the pain that she’s caused JH, and I hope JH succeeds, unfortunately that means cursing DC and DW as well.

I don’t get Chun Hee’s feelings towards JH regarding her parentage. She doesn’t hate Ki Sun, so it seems like she puts a lot of stock into bloodlines, if she is wary of JH simply because she doesn’t know who her father is then it does not look good for DW. Also, JH has an unknown father, Hye Rin has an unknown mother: could they be twins?

East of Eden, episode 11

Myung Hun rapes Ji Hyun. Myung Hun then wants to marry Ji Hyun. Ji Hyun attempts suicide. Also the old station master shows incredible restraint when Myung Hun tries to apologise for said rape and proclaim his true love for Ji Hyun.

Dong Chul arrives back in Macau and Guk Ja is waiting on his boat. (What? They just skipped Nurse Yoo? Damn it). DC gets slapped twice, but he doesn’t back down this time. Guk Ja is disappointed that her short love affair is over and walks away. DC watches her walk away (oh, if only he wasn’t honour bound to avenge his murdered father). Anyway, it seems DC has decided to return to Korea and he says goodbye to his Chinese family.

Meanwhile, Hye Rin gives her eyes a workout (she was a little scary, I thought Lee Da Hae was a supposed to be a good actress, I guess popular doesn’t equal good, but I’ve liked her in all her other scenes, so maybe she just had an cruel director that day) when she goes off at her parents for not getting Dong Wook released. Oh, and Hye Rin wasn’t adopted, she’s the product of her father’s affair, hence the tension between her and her mother/stepmother. She believes her mother hates her, and her mother doesn’t really deny it, but she still doesn’t seem as bad as Hye Rin makes her out to be.

Dong Wook and Tae Hwan have a father-son chat. Once again bloodlines are insulted (it doesn’t get old). Then Tae Hwan learns that DC is alive (he’d been calling DC a water ghost, which is pretty) and back in Korea. He’s not happy about it. Guk Ja’s not happy about DC rejecting her to become her father’s pet, and so acts really rude to him. The Guks’ also aren’t happy about how chummy their pal President Min (turns out he owns a newspaper, which was probably mentioned earlier) is with Tae Hwan.

Anyway, later on DC learns where DW is being held prisoner and P. Guk helps him secure DW’s release by bribing, or something-or-other, the chief prosecutor. So, DC goes off to deliver the bribe or whatever to the chief prosecutor, whom is attending a party held my President Min.

DC runs into Hye Rin, who is also going to ask the chief prosecutor to release DW. These two share several moments (while remaining oblivious and apparently indifferent to the other’s identity, seriously, it’s simple courtesy to ask a person’s name!), which are very cute but DC’s kind nature only reminds Hye Rin of DW’s kind nature. Meanwhile, Guk Ja at home obsessing over DC.

I don’t know where this DC/Hye Rin/DW, or GJ/DC/HR thing is going (I’m curious to know how close HR and GJ are considering GJ calls HR’s father ‘uncle’), but I’m more interested in that than the drama of the MH/JH/DW triangle.

Dong Wook gets released and is dumped on the side of the road a la Nurse Yoo, except that it’s not raining and Dong Chul is there waiting for him. Well, he’s waiting about fifty metres up the road, and seriously, it took so long for him to cross it that I started to think there was a giant quicksand pit between them. I mean, never mind the fact that he hasn’t seen him in ten years, DW’s just been tortured, and yet DC lets him struggle to stand on his own, and lets him limp and run over to him. Anyway, the old hand signal makes a comeback and I’ve realised that it’s just not the same when the adults do it. I’m little disappointed that DC didn’t shout DW’s name as per usual, at least DW remembered to shout his name. I always appreciate a Kim Bum flashback though, even microsecond ones.

I’m over Ji Hyun and Myung Hun. Is MH really essential to the story? Surely letting DW remain alive is enough. Also, I keep forgetting this show is set in the past, then strange set pieces–like five telephones–remind me.

Next Time: Dong Wook joins the army? I hope that doesn’t last long.

East of Eden, episode 10

Short summary:

This episode features an extension of the craptacular Dong Chul flying shot. It’s long enough to insert in some poignant father/son moment flashbacks. After that, the next time we see DC is in hospital, looking fully recovered, and chatting on the phone to DW about the recent demolition happenings.

Meanwhile, Tae Hwan, looking only slightly worse for wear, is feeling pretty good about DC’s apparent death (TH clearly is not hooked in to the fact that DC is the hero of this show). He’s also happy that his bid for the Macau Harbour project was accepted. He meets with Janice and Guk later to discuss terms. Janice wants them to work together, but Guk wants no part of that and leaves. TH looks like the cat that ate the canary and returns to Korea to loud applause (literally, I hope his employees were paid extra for that).

Back in Korea, we learn that Chun Hee has a psychic bond with DC, as she wakes from a bad dream at the same time he has his accident. Anyway later, during the night, Myung Hun has DW’s village demolished, but DW and co. fight back and win. Yeah! But, poor little Yo Sub, a kindergartner, was crushed during the fight. He dies. DW blames MH, but MH refuses to take responsibility and turns the blame back on DW. DW seems to take it to heart as he’s all self-pitying when on the phone to DC later on, but he’s also very excited to hear that DC plans to return to Korea.

Meanwhile, Guk Ja’s all sad that DC is nowhere to be found. She even goes to Mike to help her find him. She does find him and brings her back to her place where DC finally accepts Guk’s offer to work for him (the deciding factor: Guk tells DC he wants to destroy Tae Sung Construction). So, DC is sent to find some hedge fund manager in Hong Kong, who turns out to be Nurse Yoo. WTH? Unfortunately, that’s all for the DC portion of the show, and the rest is DW’s boring story.

MH has Ji Hyun arrested. Ji Hyun then signs a document saying DW instigated the illegal demolition protest or something, so MH has evidence to have DW arrested. MH has JH released and she’s not happy that he was before everything, she causes a car crash and it looks like she might bee severely injured, but it turns out she’s quite fine, and she has an intense fight with MH later where he gives her permission to kill him and she doesn’t take it.

Elsewhere, Hye Rin asks her parents (who are also involved in business with Tae Hwan), to help get DW out of jail, but her mother, seeing how passionate HR is over DW, decides it’d be better to keep him locked up. DW, meanwhile is being tortured.


• Myung Hun seemed confused when he learnt that the villagers were given notice of the demolition. He’s not very bright, and unfortunately that’s a genetic trait that you can’t blame Tae Hwan for.

• I loved how Ki sun went off at MH. She’s someone he actually might listen to, and she calls him oppa.

• DC and DW seem unable to hold a conversation that doesn’t degenerate into impassioned calls of ‘Hyung!’ and ‘Dong Wook-ah!’.

• DC sends mixed signals again. He holds Guk Ja’s hand instead of shrugging her off, then later tells her to go to Mike again. Never get involved with a guy with a grudge. He’ll always chose revenge over you.

• Mike and Guk Ja. The men on this show are so possessive. Still, who goes to the guy whose marriage proposal you rejected to help you find the guy you’re in love with. If Ji Hyun acted this way towards MH all these years, no wonder he’s so confused.

• I thought a whole hospital blood match type thing might happen when MH and JH got in that accident, but it was not to be. Luckily Nurse Yoo’s still around to move this plotpoint forward.

• Nurse to hedge fund manager. Okay…

• MH’s mother is awesome, or she could have been is she hadn’t married and raised such arseholes. Props to her for trying to teach to her son the true meaning of love.

• Was Hye Rin adopted? Potential to help DW down the line when his parentage comes to light.

East of Eden, episode 9

In Macau:

Lee Dong Chul saves Guk Ja, even taking a bullet for her. Guk Ja overacts. (I still want this couple together, but it’s moving a little too quickly, but then I guess a kidnapping would heighten emotions, plus she’s young and he has guilt and honour issues). Mike’s part of the rescue party, and observes Guk Ja crying over DC’s beaten and shot arse.

Shin Tae Hwan knows Janice or Jae Hee. He recognised her wrist cutting scars (emo scars not suicidal). I’m guessing she’s his first love. She ignores him at first, and he seems very sad about it. I’m not feeling very sorry for him. Later he sees her again and it looks like he rejected her a long time ago so he could marry the daughter of the owner of Tae Sung Group (Janice also remarks on Tae Hwan’s seemingly eternal appearance). He then makes a huge mistake and tells Jae Hee that him betraying her worked out well for her in the end because she married Steve Packer’s (Mike’s dad) son and became the head of the Macau Harbour project. She’s amazed at his gall. Then he pleads for her to help him get in on the Macau harbour project by reminding her that he gave her up for Tae Sung, and that the company’s all he has. Janice just walks away.

Zhang Mei has a baby boy. I wonder what she and ken named him. She shows DC a newspaper article about Tae Hwan. So now DC knows TH is in town and beat up ken, kidnapped ZM and got DC to kidnap Guk Ja, not to mention how TH ordered DC to kill GJ. (All this and DC still lets TH go when he had him under his metal pole thing?) Dong Chul later muses over Tae Hwan. I guess he’s plotting revenge, or is annoyed at the article’s typeface. I’m very disappointed in Seung Heon in this scene. He needs to work on his eye acting, they often seem dead. So, Zhang Mei asks DC to be her son’s godfather, and she also asks him not to seek revenge on TH. DC, of course, then goes and plots his revenge (ie. the events that occurred at the beginning of episode 1).

Guk and Guk Ja arrive to Steve Packer’s birthday party. Mike proposes to Guk Ja. Mike’s looking rather dapper. I hate it when guys refer to themselves as playboys. At first, I thought the propensity for korean dramas to use the word ‘playboy’ was just a translation thing, but in East of Eden they’ve been using the word in English. Anyway, Mike seems to think Guk ja should be happy that he’s never proposed to anyone before. Surely he should have followed that line with ‘and my last proposal’.

So, Guk Ja comes to see DC. He’s an upstanding fellow so he tells her he wants nothing to do with her. She tells him she turned down a marriage proposal for him (poor Mike), and reminds him of the promise he made her back on kidnap island (that if they both survived, they would love each other). DC then submits to her request that he meet her father. I think Guk Ja’s sweet in this scene, but I wonder what DC’s thinking. Is it of Guk Ja or someone else?

So, Guk Ja takes DC to Steve Packer’s bday party, the second half I guess, as it’s now on a cruise ship instead of at a house. DC then learns that President Guk (Dae Hwa) is Guk Ja’s father, and just as I hoped, he has a beautiful, but too short, flashback to when Wang Gun first showed him President Guk. Guk Ja says she is superrich and that DC (she calls him beggar ahjussi again, which I like) can pretty much right his own cheque for saving her life.

Guk talks with DC. What I wanted them to talk about, but they didn’t: that TH was the one behind the kidnapping, that DC hates TH and that he killed his father, also that DC used to work in Guk’s Korean casino. Anyway,Guk likes DC and wants to help him progress in the casino game. Guk will also help DC with his illegal immigrant status and criminal record. Guk only has one condition: hands off Guk Ja. DC says he can’t promise that and turns down all that Guk offered him. Guk Ja eavesdrops and is happy about this. (I’m still not sure whether DC’s affections are already that strong or if he’s secretly planning something. I feel like he should be planning something, but who knows). He leaves and plots the TH revenge. Guk Ja comes up to him and tells him that he should have listened to her dad. He tells her that she should listen to her dad (and marry Mike). DC then says that they shouldn’t see each other anymore. Guk Ja’s sad. Also, he says that the words that come out of her mouth aren’t beautiful, but her eyes are. Is that a compliment? I choose to believe that he’s thinking of eyes as the window to the soul, so he’s not so shallow.

Then comes a replay of the opening scenes of the drama, when Dong Chul confronts Tae Hwan and doesn’t kill him. The scene plays further after DC is trapped by the truck. His bike catches on fire and explodes, then there’s this craptacular shot of Dong Chul flying through the air away from the explosion. It has to be seen to be believed.

Meanwhile, in Korea:

Myung Hun and Wang Gun trash Chun Hee et al’s home. They also destroy all preparations for a local haraboji’s birthday party. What arseholes. I guess Ki sun’s regretting that angel remark. When Dong Wook arrives home, Chun Hee, once again, places the world (ie. The family’s honour, future, hopes and dreams) on his shoulders.

Myung Hun shows Ji Hyun pictures of Dong Wook and Hye Rin, then later when Wang Gun comes in, MH refers to JH as his lover and JH says nothing (I do not get this couple. Is MH just delusional or what is JH been doing with him? ). Myung Hun plans to destroy DW’s village, JH hears and despite MH’s warnings, she goes to warn DW. She runs into Chun Hee on the way and they have their usual argument, which ends in JH declaring her love for DW and running off to find DW hanging out with Hye Rin (DW’s so puppy dog cute). JH reacts just like you’d expect from a girl who dresses like she does. She’s jealous, and afraid for DW, but she’s just ridiculous in this scene. She asks him to give up the fight for the poor and storms out to be confronted by Hye Rin. Ji Hyun is very threatened by how much Hye Rin and DW have in common. Hye Rin does act superior in this scene, so JH’s defensiveness isn’t entirely unwarranted. Still, she’s only a few octave’s short of hysterical. She runs off and DW follows her and reaffirms his love. JH later tells Chun Lee that if she stands between her and DW, JH will hold a grudge against her to the height of the grudge CH holds against Tae Hwan.

Next time: Still no word from Nurse Yoo? DC’s coming home? Yeah!

Kkotboda Namja: A Detective Story, Chapter 2


Kkotboda Namja: A Detective Story 

Chapter 2. 

The Wife. 

Detective So Yi Jeong 

5 Jan. 

0930 hours. We inform the widow of her husband’s death. She appears shocked. She slumps in a chair and begins to cry. I search her face. Is she genuine? 

0940 hours. She hasn’t stopped crying—wailing. Often women think they look pretty when they cry, but it’s really not true. If this Geum Jan Di thinks she can fool me by playing on my male sympathies, she’s mistaken. I hand her my handkerchief. If she’s a grieving widow, I offer it in good faith. If she’s a black widow, I hope she keeps to a faith—she’ll need it. 

Song comforts her more directly. She clings to him like any other woman would. I wait for her tears to stop. I wonder how this vulgar girl ended up married to one of the most eligible men in the country. I remember all the papers asked the same question. A dry cleaner’s daughter and a chaebol heir? 

Well, it was no accident; the couple had no children. It wasn’t business; she had no connections. It wasn’t money; she had none, and he had more than enough. I glance over her body, but even with effort, the most this girl could hope for was ‘decent’. 

My patience ends. 

‘Mrs Geum Jan Di,’ I say gently. She looks at me. I smile. She doesn’t smile back. It seems she’s as equally immune to me. I am disconcerted, then I remember my black eye. Curse that damn girl.

Mrs Geum Jan Di pulls herself from Song, and wipes away her tears. 

‘You found him on the beach?’ she asks. 

Song returns to sit beside me and opposite her. ‘Yes mam,’ he says. 

‘When was the last time you saw your husband?’ I ask. 

‘Yesterday evening.’ She shakes her head. ‘I didn’t realise…I thought he’d…I’d forgotten…we didn’t realise…how could…fall overboard.’ She was working herself into a panic. I take her hands into mine and look her in the eyes. 

‘Calm down Mrs Geum Jan Di,’ I say. I smile again. Women usually find it comforting, but suspects alway find it disarming, black eye or no, I am So Yi Jeong. 

‘You mentioned something about someone falling overboard,’ Song says. 

Mrs Geum Jan Di reacts to his tone; she takes her hands back from mine, and sits up straight. 

‘Isn’t that what happened?’ she asks. ‘My husband, washed up on the beach. He must have fallen overboard.’ 

Song and I share a look. 

‘Mrs Geum Jan Di,’ Song says, ‘your husband was murdered.’ 

I watch her face closely. Her expression moves from surprise to confusion to anger. She howls. She launches out of her chair and grabs Song by his lapels. ‘My husband was murdered?’ 

Song is not happy about the intrusion into his personal space. His hands immediately clasp around hers. 

‘Mrs Geum Jan Di,’ I say sternly. I place a hand on her arm. ‘Please sit down.’ She pays me no heed. 

‘What do you mean murdered?’ Her words spit into Song’s eyes. 

‘Mrs Geum Jan Di!’ I say again. Song pulls her hands from his jacket and forces her back into her seat. When he sits back down again, he straightens his jacket, but his face remains perturbed. Mrs Geum Jan Di is lucky she was born the fairer sex. 

She appears genuinely distressed. She stands up and walks across the room. She turns and walks back. Song stands up defensively, but Mrs Geum Jan Di just says, ‘What happened?’ 

‘Mrs Geum Jan Di,’ I say, ‘if you would please sit down, Detective Song and I will happily answer any questions you may have, but we also ask that you answer ours as well.’ 

Mrs Geum Jan Di seems taken aback. ‘Am I…I am a suspect?’ She sits back down, and so does Song. 

‘Mrs Geum Jan Di,’ Song says, cool professionalism replaces his previously genial manner, ‘your husband was dead before he entered the water. He sustained a heavy blunt force injury to the back of the head. Other wounds suggest he fought with his attacker prior to the killing blow. His body had been wrapped in a tarp and weighed down with fishing sinkers; however, whoever did it, didn’t take enough care. The body got free and floated for several hours, til a young couple discovered it washed up on the beach this morning.’ 

‘I’ll ask if you could refrain from referring to my husband as ‘it’, Detective Song.’ 

‘I apologise, but Mrs Geum Jan Di, you said that you last saw your husband yesterday evening, correct? Can you give us an approximate time? Also, where did you last see him?’ 

‘About 8pm. On the boat,’ she says. 

‘The boat,’ I say, ‘You mean your family’s yacht?’ 

She nods. 

‘Why were you out on the boat Mrs Geum Jan Di?’ 

‘We—my husband and I—have both been pretty busy lately. I’ve been overseeing the restoration of our house, and he’d been busy recording his new album, and organising a new scholarship competition through his family’s foundation, so we thought it might be nice to spend the night together on the yacht.’ 

‘You wanted to spend the night together, but you last saw him at 8pm. What happened?’ 

‘I was tired. I went to bed.’ 

‘Without your husband?’ 


‘Was there anybody else on board besides you and your husband?’ 

‘Just the staff, but they couldn’t have done this. They’re all really nice people. Friends.’ 

‘We’d still like their names Mrs Geum Jan Di.’ 

‘Our chef, Bom Chun Sik, and two waitresses/maids, Ha Jae Kyung and Chu Ga Eul. Also, Captain Jung, Jung Sang Rok, he’s worked for my husband’s family for years. He’d moored the yacht just off the coast. My husband and I took a smaller boat out to get there. Later, when I noticed my husband was missing I thought he must have taken the smaller boat back to shore. I’d forgotten that Captain Jung had already taken it back earlier that evening.’ 

I note down the names. They’ll all need to be interviewed. 

‘Captain Jung didn’t stay on the boat?’ She shakes her head. ‘But the chef and the maids, they remained until they returned with you this morning?’ She nods. ‘So, when we talk with your staff, they’ll confirm that you retired to sleep at 8pm and remained in your room all night?’ 

‘Yes,’ she says tentatively. She hesitates then admits, ‘They might also mention that my husband and I argued before I went to bed.’ 

‘So, you didn’t retire because you were tired, you retired because you were angry with your husband.’ 

‘No! I was tired, tired of arguing, but I wasn’t angry at my husband. The argument wasn’t like that.’ 

‘What did you argue about?’ 

‘It’s private.’ 

‘We’re conducting a murder investigation Mrs Geum Jan Di. Nothing is private.’

‘It was inconsequential. Just about…stuff to do with the renovation. I wanted to alter the banister, make it more modern, while he wanted it to remain the way it is. He’s old-fashioned.’ 

She’s lying, and she knows we know she’s lying. 

She sits quietly then says, ‘I love my husband. He was my soulmate.’ 

Soulmate? Honey, there’s no such thing. 

‘What about Min Jae Ha,’ Song asks.

‘Excuse me?’ Her face hardens at the mention of her lover’s name. ‘You can’t believe everything you read in the newspapers, or every piece of gossip you hear. Isn’t that right, Detective So?’ 

They both turn to look at me. 

It’s true I’ve had my share of scandals. I stay clear of married women, but every so often, they don’t stay clear of me. I wonder which ones were acquaintances of Mrs Geum Jan Di and how much they told her about me. 

‘So, you’re not involved with Min Jae Ha?’ 

‘No. He’s just a friend.’ 

I believe her, but, ‘Did your husband believe that?’ 

‘Of course,’ she says, ‘he trusts me. He’s the sweetest, kindest person I’ve ever met. I don’t understand how anyone could hate him enough to murder him.’ 

‘What about Jae Ha?’

‘Excuse me?’

‘Is Jae Ha interested in you?’

‘I’ve made my feelings perfectly clear to him. And, whatever you’re suggesting, Jae Ha is currently in Macau doing a photoshoot and he’s been there for the past week.’

I can’t imagine an international model like Min Jae Ha wanting a women such as Geum Jan Di so desperately that he would hire someone to kill her husband.

A knock at the door interrupts my thoughts. Mrs Geum Jan Di silently asks our permission to answer it. We nod our assent.   

‘Jan Di-ah!’ 

She opens the door and a man enters the room. He sweeps Mrs Geum Jan Di into a tight hug. I don’t recognise the man, but his face, his voice, his hair, his posture, his designer clothing, everything about him reeks of money and entitlement.   

‘I just heard it on the news,’ the man says. 

Damn crows. Now, they’ll be clawing at our backs until we solve this case. 

‘Don’t worry Jan Di-ah,’ the man says, ‘I’ll find out who did this to Ji Hoo-ah, even if it’s the final act of the great Gu Jun Pyo.’ 

Gu Jun Pyo, head of Shinhwa Group. I note the intimate way he holds Geum Jan Di to his body. 

I share a look with Song. We understand each other without words. If we have to take on Shinhwa, our career-making case could easily become a career-ending case. 

We suspend our interview with Geum Jan Di. I glance at the list of names on my notepad: Jung Sang Rok, Bom Chun Sik, Ha Jae Kyung, and Chu Ga Eul. 

What do they know about the murder of Yun Ji Hoo?

Coming up next…

Chapter 3: The Usual Suspects
Part 1: Jung Sang Rok

Kkotboda Namja: A Detective Story, Chapter 1


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Kkotboda Namja: A Detective Story

Chapter 1. 

The Body 

Detective So Yi Jeong 

5 Jan.

0600 hours. The phone rings. It’s the Captain. A body was found washed up on the beach near the pier. He tells me to hurry before the crows descend. 

0640 hours. I’m late. The scavengers don’t even feel the cold; they get their warmth from the heat generated by their bulbs. The uniforms hold them back and guide me pass the barrier. Song salutes me as I struggle down a shifting dune, and then greets me in his usual way: 

‘Yo, my bro.’ 

Detective Song Woo Bin. My partner, and my best friend since childhood. 

Song gestures towards my eye—she must have hit me harder than I thought—and shakes his head knowingly. 

‘Never interrupt a woman’s beauty sleep,’ the bastard says. I ignore him and approach the Captain. 

‘So Yi Jeong,’ he reprimands. He doesn’t comment on my bruised eye. He looks tired. I glance at the crows. They’re squawking. I can tell the Captain’s tempted to throw them a slice of the meat, so his lined mug doesn’t grace the papers tomorrow morning. I turn to my side. I don’t want that bitch’s mark to grace the papers either. 

Under the pier stands a young couple. The man holds the woman close. It’s a cold morning, and they’ve just witnessed something terrible, but he doesn’t hold her only for comfort. The way he holds her, he wants her close, just so she’s close. I remember that feeling. 

‘Yo, Yi Jeong.’ Song calls me to the body. Korean male, late 20s, tall, slim build. He’s dressed in cream trousers and white socks, but his torso’s naked. The skin is smooth; he mustn’t have been floating long. I look at Song. He kneels down and gestures towards the back of the head. 

‘Blunt trauma,’ I say. Song nods. ‘What else?’ 

‘Signs of a struggle. Defensive wounds on the hands and arms, clean cuts,’ he pulls on a glove and carefully turns the head, ‘and this.’ 

I remember the face I had seen on billboards as I drove to the pier, a face a million females dream about each night as they lay beside their husbands, a face reportedly worth 500 billion won in endorsements alone. I remember that face, but it’s not the face in front of me now. 

It probably began as a simple cut, a swipe cheek to cheek. It was not the cause of death. If it had been treated, it would have left a scar, but he’d still be more handsome than most of us can ever dream to be. Instead, he was killed, left to fester in the sea. The saltwater curled the skin back and the little critters were grateful. 

I turn to Song. 

‘You know who this is.’ He nods. I gesture to the crows. ‘Do they?’ 

‘They will soon enough, not to mention us as well.’ 

‘What?’ He grins. 

‘Come on bro, a case like this? It’ll make our careers.’ 

I’m used to Song’s indifference to murder. He’d seen a lot worse than a blunt force floater before even reaching the age of five. To him, another stranger was dead. To me, well, dead men still get to me. 

Song has a point though. This case, the media it will generate… I’m getting ahead of myself. 

‘If we solve it,’ I say. 

‘Yo, man,’ Song slaps my back, ‘positive thoughts. We’re Song and So, you think we can’t solve some pretty boy murder? Hell, I’d put down money right now. It was the missus.’ 

‘You think so, Song?’ says the Captain. He wears a severe look that Song is well accustomed to. ‘How about you two pretty boys go find out.’ He hands us an address. It’s to a hotel, and to the dead man’s wife: Mrs Geum Jan Di.

The investigation begins in… 

 Chapter 2: The Wife