Thoughts and Highlights from “Last”–Episode 4

Some administrative stuff to get out of the way first:

My usual screencapping source Tiveee.com had a server meltdown, and HD video was not available for some of the screencaps. I apologize for the blurriness of some pics. Good news–Viki.com is running better after another computer upgrade on my end. I’m behind a little on the recaps, but Viki just got the rights to sub “Last” and they are catching up too. I like checking their subs to compare against DF/Tiveee subs.

Due to the new school semester starting up, there will be fewer posts, probably one a week–as I trade spending time at one kind of keyboard for another kind of keyboard. I may do some future write-ups on “College Piano Course” if interesting or fun things happen like they did in Music Theory class–so stay tuned! 

I also wanted to quickly mention I am watching “Yong Pal” but will probably not write too much about it, since it is quite popular and being recapped on multiple sites. It took me most of the first episode to get on board, but now I like this show a whole lot. “Yong Pal” reminds me (in a good way) of a doctor that worked at the Student Health Center at my local college when I was a student receptionist. This guy was totally fearless. He had been a physician for the South Vietnamese Army during the war; somehow he made it out of Vietnam on a boat, and got his license to practice medicine here in the US. I saw him treat injured athletes and other students way over and above what he had to do–and he never asked for anything extra. He set bones, stitched cuts, did small surgeries with local anesthetics, even tackled dental problems if the student came in with an infection. He did amazing work with the meager resources of a small local community college student health center too. He carried a big black bag with tons of medical supplies in it all the time–like he was ready for an emergency at any moment. He was a nice person too–if he needed help and the nurse was busy, I did what I could to assist him, and he never lost his temper or yelled at me. I was only 20–trust me, I had no idea what I was doing! My medical/dental background demands a high level of accuracy in a show; I can suspend disbelief for a few things, but basic stuff like wearing eye protection and gloves for surgery is a must. “Yong Pal” needs to step up the accuracy game. Once again, I will be happy to offer my consulting services for the low, low price of a RT plane ticket to Seoul and a stay at the Lotte!

*all screencaps from tiveee.com unless noted otherwise*

Okay, on to Episode 4–which starts with the authorities dredging TH’s Hyundai sedan out of the harbor–with his buddy Min Soo’s remains undoubtedly inside:

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Of course, TH is gonna be accused of murder now too, so if he didn’t already have Loan Shark President Jung, the #1 Big Boss KSH, and the other leaders like Sergeant, Crocodile and Poison Snake all trying to do him in, now the cops are after him for MS’s death and the insider trading stuff too. Talk about your bad hair days! And I have the nerve to complain about my crummy days at work!

The Chairman seems like he is back in reality:

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which is kind of sad. I like it when he believes he’s the Chairman. He tells TH he doesn’t want to be a bother to him. TH and HJ are discouraged, and wonder if there’s anything else they can do for the Chairman. Then Hacker dude drops this little nugget:

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Oooh, so his daddy is a DAOM? That might come in handy. I’m gonna bet that will be an important story component at some point. That little tidbit was not dropped out of the sky for no good reason. Earmarked for future reference. TH runs into Mantis on the street, and he’s soon back at KSH’s Lair, where he is confronted about his refusal of the “gift”:

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Hmm….what is a “Ju Po”? DF and Tiveee have the same subs. I scoured all of my usual Korean Slang websites–no help. So I sent a message to the person I figured would know something like this–the exceptionally knowledgeable @seungshin who gave me this link. Basically, he’s saying he’s a ‘failed gun’. I waited for the Viki translators and here is what they came up with:

*screencap from viki.com*

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Interesting translation between DF and Viki. TH gets the bad news from the TV:

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and KSH knows he’s now got TH by the short hairs. He pours TH a drink (uh, oh TH–remember what happened last time you accepted a drink from the #1 Big Boss!) while he wonders what TH will do. There’s no place to hide; LSPJ is a pretty determined guy, and is gonna kill him for sure. KSH makes TH an offer:

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KHS invokes the law of the jungle:

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TH has enough brains to ask this:

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Okay, that’s a legit question. KSH hedges a bit; saying he’ll get more business–but he’s really doing this for TH. Yeah, I doubt it. KHS wants LSPJ outta his way too. TH makes this declaration:

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Wait, didn’t TH say he wanted to recoup the money he lost in the deal? How do you do that without taking down some of the baddies too? Or is he changing, and he just wants to survive now? KSH reminds TH about the 5 billion won that TH owes him, and this is a shortcut. He’s got two choices–

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or take out LSPJ:

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After Crocodile and Poison Snake whine to Mantis that collections are bad because LSPJ’s minions area causing trouble–looky who is having lunch together!

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Innnteresting! So are they loyal to the #1 Big Boss or are they going to defect to LSPJ? LSPJ gives his best sales pitch to these two to come over to his side and betray their Boss. It seems tempting, but PS won’t hear of it:

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and the person who saved him (and got stabbed in the process) was the #1 Big Boss.

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But regarding TH–now that’s a different story! I am pretty sure he blabs TH’s whereabouts to LSPJ. KHS gets HJ to give him info on TH’s location too:

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Jeez, these guys have no issues over backstabbing each other…It’s the law of the jungle. HJ looks like he’s too afraid to say no to the #1 Big Boss. Mantis hands HJ a cell phone and an envelope of small bills.

MJ goes to a train station and buys a couple of tickets.

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Side note: Gangneung is the site of the upcoming 2018 Winter Olympics.

She waits and waits and we get a flashback to a (supposedly) much younger MJ and RJG–well, they didn’t make them look that much younger!

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MJ has her plum colored hair in a short bob–I guess she was quite the rebel!  RJG tells her they can’t live on the run:

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MJ finally rips up the tickets and walks away….I’m starting to get really interested in these two. Hmm….what happened to them in the past? All the angsty looks they shoot toward each other are working me over. This won’t end well; the #1 Big Boss and the #2 Prizefighter both love the same girl, and I am darn sure neither of them want to lose her.

LSPJ has it all figured out–KHS saved TH’s backside for a reason:

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I have to mention how much this actor seems to relish his role as LSPJ. It seems like he has found the role of a lifetime, and he is playing LSPJ to the hilt! He correctly surmises that TH will attend MS’s memorial service, and of course TH does, complete with black cap and HJ in tow:

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MJ’s widow is sobbing as TH enters the room. I wish I could tell her that it’s okay—Professor Kang was a “rat” bastard and deserved whatever he got–oops, sorry. Wrong show! That has to be creepy for the actor–to see a picture of yourself like that:

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TH is easily captured by LSPJ’s thugs, but thankfully, HJ gets away. After a thorough taunting by the dimwitted Head Thug, TH takes the chance at a stoplight to escape–and hitches a getaway ride on the back of a truck! The BGM is a win here too. He gets back to Halmoni’s and grabs his stuff, only to run into the Chairman leaving as well. I love this screencap–either character could be saying this to the other:

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But it’s TH who is concerned about the Chairman…I like this. He’s thinking about someone else at a moment when he could be justified in only considering himself. Good job, TH! Chairman tells him not to worry:

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I really like this character–before the fire that destroyed his factory and killed his wife, I’m gonna guess he was not only a savvy businessman, but a good boss as well–one who was truly concerned about his employees. He gives TH one last piece of advice:

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Gosh, I hope this isn’t the last we see of the Chairman!

Mantis gives his boss the latest info:

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Ehh….don’t write off TH just yet, my friend! TH shows up at the Lair, and promises to wipe out LSPJ–but he has some conditions for the deal. KHS sneers that he’s in no shape to be negotiating a deal, but TH disagrees:

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Alrighty then:

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TH asks why pick him to do the job of eliminating LSPJ, when he has Mantis, or other pro dudes who are up to the job.

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TH knows that LSPJ is cutting into KHS’s business..but if KHS kills him, suspicion might fall on KHS. TH knows that to KSH:

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since he lost all the money in the failed business deal, and is accused of murdering his co-worker Min Soo. TH is sure that KHS will kill him after he kills LSPJ. Here’s TH’s first request:

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He’ll need fake papers and some pocket money too. KHS wonders why he should bother–since TH thinks he will kill him anyways. TH is really looking for this:

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TH, I cannot figure out why you would trust this guy….I know you are desperate, but he is the #1 Big Boss for a reason. He’s stepped on a whole bunch of guys to get to the Top Dog position. Uh, oh! KHS takes the gun and points it right at TH! Yikes!

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while he tells Mantis to have Crocodile get a Grade-A fake passport! Omo, so he’s gonna do it? KHS laments that TH could have climbed the ranks among his men and been a success, but TH declines that offer:

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We get some info on the gun:

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This is another “old school” handgun–and even though it is a semi-automatic, it is ancient technology. This particular model was made in the early 1930’s. The next model, the TT-33, was used extensively during WWII by officers of the Russian army, and was notably reliable and durable under extreme conditions. Bullets were easily available too, although now in the US, that is not necessarily the case. From the link above: “The 7.62×25mm cartridge is powerful, has an extremely flat trajectory, and is capable of penetrating thick clothing and soft body armor.” It’s interesting to me to see what kind of handguns are picked for these shows. There was a much older style handgun in “Mrs. Cop” as well. I know gun laws are super-tight in SK, and I wonder why the guns selected for use in TV dramas are all older, more “collector’s items” than “modern usage” kind of guns. TH only has the eight rounds in the magazine, so he better be a good shot!

TH goes around, stalking following LSPJ to find a good moment to wipe him out.

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TH, don’t you know by now–only the baddies wear all black with a black cap! The police (even as inept as they are shown to be in “Mrs. Cop”) can figure out that you are the baddie by your fashion choices. I might advise a less obvious color choice, like blue. Then you could wear a LA Dodgers cap and show your support for fellow countryman Ryu Hyun Jin who is currently on the DL for the remainder of the season recovering from a torn labrum and the shoulder surgery to repair it. That injury ended the pitching career of a friend of mine’s son, so I hope RHJ has better luck than he did. RHJ fighting!

Oh great–it looks like LSPJ has a cutie pie grand daughter too. Please show, do not let harm come to this innocent child!

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It’s not long before TH has a rundown of LSPJ’s daily activities…he’s quite predictable, has guards around him every minute, and only visits familiar places. Honestly, I’m not thrilled about this whole idea of assassinating LSPJ. Okay, he’s a ruthless and greedy so-and-so, and he probably deserves it; I just don’t want TH to be the one who does the deed. I am not in the habit of cheering on those who kill others. (Exception–Hyung in “Pinocchio”. That was a real moral dilemma for me.)

RJG meets MJ outside of the lair–with a teddy bear behind his back!

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When she asks him if he was waiting around for her, he gives her this now-famous line:

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Heh. Straight up stolen property from SLA Episode 16! RJG gives her the teddy bear:

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It’s a birthday present for MJ! I have so many feelings about this scene. On one hand, it seems so childish and ridiculous for a man in his 30’s? (40’s?) to give the girl he likes a teddy bear for her birthday. Is he still 17? Or is she? On the other hand, it seems cute and kind of poignant–he has nothing else, and it’s like he is trying to woo her. She acts cool and detatched, but it’s clear she’s surprised that he would remember her birthday. RJG counters that there is nothing super special going on here, oh no, not at all, nope!

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She thanks him, but says she’s not happy. RJG takes a guess at the reason:

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MJ says she isn’t sure whether to be angry or just give up–since he probably still thinks of her as an immature 18 year old HS student. She gives him back the bear and tells him to keep it for Eun Ji. RJG looks crushed as MJ starts to walk away–then she turns around and asks him if he’s seen TH lately….oh, so she must have overheard something at the Lair. Excellent–TH needs all the help he can get. If MJ is on his side, that is all kinds of useful. It helps to have a Mole in the Lair.

RJG tracks TH down. Looks like the teacher is less than pleased with his pupil:

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I’m on RJG’s side here, as he reminds TH of the most minimal consequences he might face:

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RJG advises TH to go back to KHS and tell him fugeddaboudit, but TH says that KHS will just beat the crap out of him. RJG’s next piece of advice–run away. He tells this to TH–which is exactly what I am thinking too:

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TH confidently says he’s got a plan, but we all know how well “plans” have worked for TH in the past!  RJG knows it too, and he also knows KHS won’t keep his promise. TH says thanks for the advice and starts to leave. RJG tries to stop him, only to have TH punch him in the gut! Dude, that was a bad move! You should be listening to #2. He apologizes to RJG, but adds the disclaimer:
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Now I know TH got up this morning and took a handful of stupid pills, because he’s got the diamond ring in his hand, and he’s lurking by his not-fiancee’s place. SMH. TH even gets to see Se Hoon give his not-fiancee a forehead kiss! SH is no dummy–he’s watching his girlfriend and TH in his rearview mirror:

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JM gives him some static about what she’s seen on TV, and she knows he’s a wanted man. TH tells JM that he is leaving, and might not come back, so:

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He tells her she can do whatever she wants to do with the ring, but it’s hers, so she should take it.

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TH starts to leave, thinks better of it, and goes back for a hug. He tells her the time they spent together was the best time of his life, and again, I have to wonder if he’s truly sincere or totally clueless. I have to admit, I usually don’t feel so conflicted about the main character. However, in this show–everybody has a shade of gray; there is very little black and white. It’s disconcerting–but it keeps me interested. I’m fascinated with these multi-dimensional characters, and how they react. The BGM is another total win here as well–sort of an updated classical guitar feel.

The big day arrives, and TH has it all planned out. Yup–can’t wait to see how this is gonna go–not! TH distracts the Head Thug of LSPJ, and gets into the massage place where LSPJ is waiting for his massage on the table. TH grabs a pillow and holds it in front of the gun.

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Omo–is he really gonna do it? I reach for the remote, ready to hit the button. The music is superb–and then LSPJ’s cell phone rings! OMG it’s his granddaughter–on video chat!

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The granddaughter has a cute conversation with LSPJ:

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and TH is in the background–with conflict written all over his face. That little girl–and TH’s morals (weak as they are) are gonna keep him from doing the deed. LSPJ sees TH with the gun in the cell phone’s camera–uh, oh! I am not sure who is more scared here!

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Uhh…sir, if you don’t know why TH has a gun pointed at you–then you are completely clueless! LSPJ starts to yell for help, then he begs for his life. I kinda like this–after all that LSPJ has put TH through, it feels pretty good. Hey TH–Just shoot this guy already!  But TH can’t pull the trigger. Ah…that last shred of conscience is getting in the way. A tear rolls down TH’s cheek as he drags this out, telling LSPJ he deserves a worse fate than death–and LSPJ agrees!  I’m starting to yell at the screen now because I am conflicted too. No, TH–don’t shoot him. You’ll be a murderer too. But wait–if TH doesn’t wipe out LSPJ here–I’m sure either KHS or LSPJ will kill TH later. Yeah–go ahead and shoot this bastard! TH holds the gun on LSPJ as he backs away, opens the window and climbs out–yikes!

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The camera angles in this scene are just great–but if you have a fear of heights or get dizzy easily, be careful. The Head Thug finally gets into the room where his boss is:

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TH is climbing up the building, but loses the gun! Bad move…

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Wow–somebody is gonna pick that up real quick. What a prize that would be on the street!  Carloads of LSPJ’s thugs arrive as TH gets up to the roof.

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The BGM changes, and adds to the adrenaline rush in this scene. The thugs corner TH on the roof:

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and TH takes them on. Again, this fight scene is one I am totally on board with. RJG’s fighting lessons have come in pretty handy, as TH does a number on several thugs–and he’s unarmed for most of the fight. The Head Thug decides it’s time to end this, so he pulls out a knife and stabs TH in the stomach! Way to bring a knife to a fistfight, jerk!  A couple more blows from another thug, and TH is dangling off the roof. LSPJ comes out to gloat:

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TH–I think you should have shot this jerk when you had your chance. LSPJ is one sick SOB–

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This time, TH is not feeling like a round of Kings and Jokers. He turns him down:

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And falls onto a pile of cardboard and trash. (Great caption-Hee!)

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Foreman Oh (the chubby guy with the beard who fought TH a couple of episodes ago) sees TH in the trashpile–and hauls him outta there!

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Somehow, he has a motorcycle and they escape the LSPJ thug crowd.

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LSPJ is not a happy camper:

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Um…did you hire these guys for their brains? Somebody needs to reschedule a complimentary massage for their boss. LSPJ gives his crew a good scolding and declares:

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Meanwhile, Mantis gives his boss the bad news (with the BGM straight from an old western!):

Mistranslated: should be

And the #1 Big Boss ain’t too happy either! He tells Mantis to gather everybody up, and pretty soon the Sergeant is trolling through the Seoul Station, and getting a posse together. HJ and Hacker Dude escape the roundup, and Hacker gives HJ the 411:

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HJ looks plenty guilty when Hacker asks if he’s seen or heard anything about TH lately, and then the cell phone KHS gave him starts ringing…ha! He shoos Hacker away, and tells Mantis (?) that he hasn’t seen TH around either.

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Foreman Oh takes TH to a construction site he’s staying at:

Just call me Captain Obvious!

Just call me Captain Obvious!

He wants to take TH to the hospital, but TH declines:

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Crocodile and his minions create a ruckus at the free clinic/hospital that treats the homeless, searching for TH. Crocodile meets the wrath of Na Ra. Dude, you’re going down:

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Crocodile tells her that TH has been stabbed, so he should be showing up here. She’s clearly concerned, and Crocodile presses her for an answer. Bad move, dude!

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The minions leave as Crocodile gets word there’s been a break-in at the #1 Big Boss’s place. The #1 Big Boss knows exactly who did this, and how to get revenge–LSPJ’s brother has an alcohol wholesale business in Yongsan (this area includes the now famous Hannamdong neighborhood and the Itaewon shopping district). Time to do some damage–

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“Last” is firing on all cylinders for me–I hope it can maintain this kind of intensity, along with the great story for the rest of the show.

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One thought on “Thoughts and Highlights from “Last”–Episode 4

  1. Pingback: LAST. JTBC. | IKurate

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