I have mentioned before that the writer of this amazing drama is the one who did Chaser and Empire of Gold. Although I have not had the chance to watch Chaser which won the best drama of 2012 if my memory serves me right, I can definitely say that EOG has one of the best lines in k-drama.
Now watching PUNCH, I am once again being indulged with amazing quotes and lines from characters of this drama. There is no time to look away or miss any dialogues because it is where the great "punchlines" are being thrown.
I have just finished watching episode 7 and seriously, the turn of events are gripping. The mind games doesn't stop but continue to take hold of all the characters involved in the quest for whatever they are after, maybe truth or revenge. But then, this drama is not all about right or wrong, good or bad, but the choices they make in every turn to escape, to triumph or to stay in power.
The story further examines the bonds between family and friends. It shows about loyalty and betrayal. For the primary characters, seven years ago was the turning point in their lives. The choices they made that time becomes the people who they are now. The choices back then is now catching up and somehow intertwined with the current problems facing them. Seven years ago was a memorable moment for Minister Yoon, Park Jung Hwan and Lee Ho Sung.
I love the words uttered by Lee Ho Sung in this episode to Minister Yoon. Something like..."bad people, less bad people...still stood in front of him." Which side should he choose?
Lets take a rewind....
Seven years ago, there was a fraud enlistment case that was being investigated. High profiled sons of wealthy families were some of the names listed on the list. Now, there was a broker, [sorry, I did not quite catch or understand where this broker fit into this case] and to make it short, Park Jung Hwan was the one investigating that time and he made a deal with the said broker. Ho Sung told prosecutor Yoon then that names were listed and that was how it was gotten by Jung Hwan. In that list, her son's name appeared. I guess the way to evade the enlistment is to fabricate excuse which was found out after. Prosecutor Yoon who was the perfect example of abiding the law to a T now was in a predicament. She will be dragged on this case and somehow, she doesn't want to fall because of her fear that prosecutor Lee Tae Joon who seems to be her nemeses would find the perfect time to occupy and head the Prosecutor's office. To bury the case, Park Jung Hwan became the sacrificial lamb. He was accused of bribery/dealing as a prosecutor. The rest was history as how he was punished, suspended and came to hold hands with Lee Tae Joon. Lee Ho Sung knew about it.
Now years after, the case between Chief Prosecutor Lee Tae Joon, Lee Tae Seop, Kim Sang Min and Park Jung Hwan is currently what Ha Gyung and Minister Yoon are trying to uncover and track the link that will prove of their bribery and corruption. In search for the truth, Kim Sang Min was arrested even after stating facts in exchanged for Ha Gyung's release from the detention prison. But Ha Gyung is not our typical female who will let justice be walked on especially if she knew that a murderer was on the loose. This is where the conflict between husband and wife then comes in. They have opposite goals and principles in life. I want to think that Ha Gyung is right in her stand but watching this drama, there is truth that one can never really live a perfect life that follows the law and the moral standard without having to compromise them at some point in their lives. I like how the characters here have somehow shown how and why they were in that position that changes them into who and what they are now. But then, there is also hypocrisy that needs to be revealed, and that is the case of Minister Yoon.
At this time, what she has hidden for seven years will now be revealed and the stakes are high. This is the only yet the best card left for Lee Tae Joon to use against Minister Yoon.
The tragic suicide of Lee Tae Seop by jumping off the cold waters at the reservoir was a bitter and painful event that Lee Tae Joon witnessed. In order to avoid the searching investigators team at the restaurant where he met Kim Sang Min, Lee Tae Seop run for the mountains where he could safely hide. But when Kim Sang Min was arrested, he saw the video when Tae Seop did not even call him or tip him off about the arrest, making him reveal the secret hideout. By the time Tae Joon visited his brother it was almost too late for the arresting team were now after them at the vicinity. The heart tugging moments where when Tae Seop went at the back to dig a crop to give his younger brother. That was when he saw the police running around the hills, and to get their attention and off to his brother and Kang Jae, he revealed himself as he also turn around and run to hide. It was a cold day, winter has already come.
Jung Hwan was called to help Tae Seop get out of that place. Kang Jae has already found out about his deteriorating health and how much time he only got. Kang Jae confiscated the drug for his pains and gave it Tae Joon. he was able to get Tae Sep out of there with Kang Jae. But then his daughter Ye rin had heard the navigation cue from his car while talking to her which the child innocently relayed her mother. The chance to arrest Tae Seop was gone when the accused decided to end his life in order to stop the investigation and link his brother to the crime.
Of course, Tae Joon's heart should now be filled with so much anger and hate and revenge for the people who made his brother jump off the cliff. They have to pay. Minister Yoon is on top of his list.That why the enlistment fraud was opened again. Then there is Park Jung Hwan, his once trusted friend. He was about to take the fall for all the crimes that he committed in exchange with the deal he was about to do with Minister Yoon.
The moment Jung Hwan was arrested by Ha Gyung on the spot of making a deal with Kim Sang Min, she still made him a favor by not handcuffing him. He made confessions linking Tae Joon to Sang Min and at the same time asked Minister Yoon to let him get out and stand trial. She gave him her word.
But only to betray Jung Hwan. The broker from Peru was found out by Tae Joon's man and even if there was weather disturbance, the fate of the broker landed on Tae Joon's hands. Ho Sung who was then asked again by Minister Yoon to secure the broker was in a dilemma. It was like a de javu' to him. Like what I wrote above, he was presented by bad and less bad people. He chose to be at the Minister Yoon's side...again.
The knowledge that the broker was safely tucked under Tae Joon's camp made him mock and threatened Minister Yoon. Will she be prepared to be arrested as the current Ministry of Justice? Well, that's when another situation made her bury a case that they were so close to wrapping up. Ha Gyung is so close to make the connections to bury Lee Tae Joon and Park Jung Hwan and Kim Sang Min. But Minister Yoon now asked her to stop investigating and just let it rest on Park Jung Hwan. Prosecutor Jung who was present at the meeting was requested to take off Ha Gyung from the case when the latter protested. But then the vice prosecutor told Minister Yoon that he will take all the responsibility by following the law instead of following the Blue House. Ha Gyung was told to proceed.
It's now become more messy. Minister Yoon versus Ha Gyung. Will she continue to be by Tae Joon's side? How will Ha Gyung now do her job? Will she somehow save Jung Hwan? Is she now disappointed by Minister Yoon for realizing that Jung Hwan may be right all along? That life is not what it seems. Choices are there because circumstances arise that make one believe the right choice is the one they made.
Jo Kang Jae is a character that annoys me so much but at the same time makes me expect something more unforeseen schemes that he will do. Choi Yeon Jin is just as I have suspected, someone who carries a torch for Jung Hwan. But then, there's no room for any women in his life except Ye Rin. As expected, the writer will not go any where near romance. I wonder what will be her next move? She is ambitious. Will her character evolve?
Got to say that the moment Tae Joon broke all the pain killer drugs on his palms was one of the chilling moments of episode 7. And Kim Rae Won continue to impress me so much with his performance in this gripping drama.