Black: Episode 13
Black becomes single-minded in his pursuit of Scarface, determined to avenge Ha-ram’s death. Scarface’s role in the murders from twenty years ago is revealed, as is the reason Moo-gang visited him in the mental hospital. Kwang-kyun’s convinced he’s figured out the real culprit, but he still needs proof. Soo-wan does a little sleuthing of her own.
EPISODE 13 RECAP
Soo-wan tracks down another restaurant owner who remembers Moo-gang eating there a few months ago. The woman says Moo-gang was looking for her boss, who wasn’t there at the time. The restaurant owner was sure Moo-gang would return since he left medication behind, but she never saw Moo-gang again.
Black gets the phone call that Ha-ram lost at least two liters of blood, which means her survival isn’t likely. Black portals to the crime lab to see the proof himself, and despite the 99.98 percent certainty that the DNA found in the blood belongs to Ha-ram, Black demands they retest the blood. As he shouts at the lab tech, Black suddenly clutches his heart and collapses in pain.
Soo-wan researches Moo-gang’s prescriptions and then confronts Creepy Doc, pointing out that Moo-gang can’t take that kind of medication. Creepy Doc says Moo-gang asked him to get the migraine medication for a friend. Creepy Doc is also curious why Soo-wan suddenly reappeared after resigning, but there’s no time to talk about that, since they’re both distracted by Black being rushed into the ER.
Soo-wan watches as Black regains consciousness after his collapse. He immediately gets up and angrily asks Soo-wan if she was the one who told Ha-ram the truth about Joon and Moo-gang. Furious, blames Soo-wn for Ha-ram’s death. If Soo-wan hadn’t told Ha-ram the truth, then Black would still be by Ha-ram’s side and could have protected her.
Creepy Doc tries to prevent Black from leaving the hospital, but Black tosses Creepy Doc aside, which causes the capsule in his pocket to roll out. Black picks it up and sees that its his missing capsule. Black clutches the capsule to his chest.
Soo-wan is stunned to discover that Ha-ram is dead. As Soo-wan gets into her car, Scarface suddenly pops up from the back seat and holds a knife against her throat. Eeek!
Scarface says that he needs money in order to finish plan, which now is on a speedy track thanks to the public hullabaloo about Ha-ram’s Death. Scarface says that there’s just one more person left to kill — someone that means the most to “that jerk.” Scarface giggles in delight as he anticipates his revenge.
As Joseon and Hip-hop try to figure out how the capsule ended up at the hospital, Black blames himself for Ha-ram’s death. Joseon gently reminds Black that Ha-ram didn’t want him around any more, so it’s not like he had a choice to stay away.
Hip-hop wonders what happened to Ha-ram’s soul, since the capsule was opened at the hospital by someone else, and Black wasn’t near Ha-ram to escort her to the afterlife. Joseon muses that Ha-ram’s soul must be so scared and confused without a Reaper to explain to her that she’s dead — that’s the hardest realization for a human to have, and is a main reason why there are Reapers to help escort them.
Joseon and Hip-hop conclude that Ha-ram’s soul must still be standing by her body, confused and not knowing where to go. Black visits the crime scene where Ha-ram’s blood was found, imagining sitting her next to her body. He vows to find her wherever she is, asking that she stay next to her body. But first, he has to catch Scarface.
In his secret butcher’s room, Scarface counts the money Soo-wan gave him, amused to find out that Ha-ram is detective Kang Soo-hyuk’s daughter. As Scarface studies his hand — which doesn’t have a tattoo — he remembers when he had tried hunting down Joon and young Moo-gang in the abandoned factory. Scarface threatened Joon, demanding Joon “give it to him,” but before Scarface could stab Joon with his knife, Ha-ram’s father intervened and saved the boy.
Later, when Ha-ram’s father tried to look for Scarface, the older man came after him with a hammer. Ha-ram’s father demanded to know if “that man” ordered Scarface to try and kill him and the boy. Ha-ram’s father fought off Scarface and then told Scarface to take him to “that bastard.”
But Scarface used the hammer on the back of Ha-ram’s father’s head, brutally bludgeoning him. Scarface dragged him to the edge of the platform and threw him over the edge. That’s where he was found in the morning, when his death was deemed a suicide.
That’s also when young Ha-ram (being held by a younger Kwang-kyun) pointed out the man who killed her father — the man with the spider tattoo. Because of that, Scarface used an iron to burn off the tattoo. In the present day, Scarface wonders how Ha-ra knew he killed her father, and how she found him today, too. He looks back at a cabinet that’s seeping blood from the bottom.
We see a glimpse of Ha-ram in darkness, but it looks like she might still be alive — just barely, though.
Kwang-kyun tells the detectives what he knows about Scarface so far: right before Scarface was supposed to receive the life insurance payout from his wife dying in the fire, he was investigated for arson and murder. During that time, Scarface disappeared and was hospitalized at the mental hospital. Kwang-kyun assumes that Scarface’s sister-in-law must have had a hand in it since she was the one who ended up with life insurance payout.
The detectives fight over which team should investigate the case, since despite Kwang-kyun’s team being the first on the scene for Mi-so, the sister, and Ha-ram’s murders, it’s now escalated to a nation-wide manhunt for a psychopathic serial killer.
Black arrives at the station, and his fellow detectives want to send him home to rest, but Black’s primary concern is finding Scarface. He’s annoyed when he sees that the last number Ha-ram called was the police help line, but they had dismissed it as a prank call since they couldn’t get an address.
Missing-finger’s dirty detective whines that Ha-ram actually brought this all on herself, since she was the one who tried to catch a killer. He says that Ha-ram brought her death on herself, and now the detectives have to clean up her mess. Outraged, Black punches the dirty detective in the face, ready to fight even though the other detectives hold him back.
Because of his actions, Black is suspended. As the other detectives try to escort him out, Ha-ram’s mother runs in, begging them to find her daughter. She insists that Ha-ram’s too strong to die, and when the detectives are distracted by Mom’s wailing, Black steals some evidence of Ha-ram’s case and hides it into his coat. Kwang-kyun wonders where he’s seen Ha-ram’s mother before.
Black goes through the eyewitness log of people who called to report they know who Scarface is, discovering one of them is part of the neighborhood gang he’s beaten up more than once. Black finds the gangsters at a sauna, and they all jump up to greet him respectfully. One of them reveals he’s from the same Chinese hometown as Scarface.
The gangster also has a spider tattoo on his back, just like Scarface used to have on his hand. The spider tattoo is actually a sign that someone was a part of the “Tarantula Gang” back in China, of which Scarface used to be the head enforcer. The gangster adds that he heard rumors that Scarface also used to be a hitman.
Black portals to Ha-ram’s apartment, searching for the file about the fire, which also has the photo of Scarface pre-scar and still with a tattoo. He finds it in the fridge, and stops when he sees Ha-ram’s note to “Die hard! Never die!” He remembers her declaration that she would live a long life and never die. Black vows that he’ll find Ha-ram no matter what.
Then he portals to the police station bathroom, startling Kwang-kyun who’s at the sink. He gives Kwang-kyun the arson file and tells him about the Tarantula Gang, asking Kwang-kyun to look into it and let him know what he finds. Kwang-kyun worriedly tells Black to take care of himself, since he won’t be able to find Ha-ram’s body if he’s sick.
The Tarantula Gang is a dead end, since the gang hasn’t existed for the past twenty years. The gangster informants grumble that they’ve already told the cops all this a year ago, and Kwang-kyun realizes that Moo-gang had already visited them and asked them about the spider tattoo. That was shortly after Moo-gang was hired on as a detective.
Kwang-kyun realizes that the cases Moo-gang was secretly investigating are all related. Kwang-kyun surmises that Joon witnessed Clara being killed and then ran away, and the murderer chased him and hit him with the car. Kwang-kyun sees something interesting on the copies of Scarface’s suspended request for the life insurance payout and the subsequent approval and hurries to Royal Group to talk to Man-ho.
He asks Man-ho how long it takes to investigate insurance fraud, and Man-ho tells him that it can years. Kwang-kyun is confused how a claim that was suspended was subsequently paid out only ten days later — an absurdly short amount of time.
Kwang-kyun’s theory is that Man-ho used Scarface’s hitman skills to get rid of Clara, offering the settlement as payment after the job was completed. After Kwang-kyun leaves, Man-ho’s determined to find the original insurance copy, since he knows he deleted all the data from back then.
Black, tired and despondent, returns home. He studies Ha-ram’s broken and bloody phone that he stole from the station. Swiping through all the photos she took of him, Black wishes she took some pictures of herself — it’s her face he wants to see, not Moo-gang’s.
He wonders where she is, wanting to hear her voice. That reminds him that she called the helpline, where all calls are recorded. He gets a copy of the recording, where Ha-ram breathlessly tells them that a serial killer is about to kill someone else, but before she can tell them the address, she says “It must be right now,” and hangs up.
In the background, Black can hear someone calling out that they’re collecting old appliances. He portals over to the sister-in-law’s house, waiting for the appliance truck to drive by as scheduled. The driver turns out to be none other than the original man Ha-ram saved from being shot, only for Moo-gang to be shot instead.
He’s thrilled to see Black again, but Black asks him if he saw anything strange a few days ago. The man remembers accidentally bumping into a truck that was illegally parked. The man tried calling the phone number posted in the window, but no one replied. Black gets the number he called and tracks it down to a butcher’s shop.
Black cautiously enters the butcher’s back room, finding the cabinet with the pool of blood. He opens the cabinet, and he stares at… what? WHAT IS IT???
At the hospital, Kwang-kyun tracks down Moo-gang’s mother, asking about Man-ho’s father and his health. Even though he’s been bedridden for years, Moo-gang’s mother is confident that Man-ho’s father is doing better than ever. Kwang-kyun asks to speak to him.
Black closes the cabinet, which is empty. Whew. But he turns around to see a woman’s body hanging from the ceiling, missing a shoe. Oh no.
Kwang-kyun asks Man-soo’s father about the butterfly watch, and Man-soo’s father’s doesn’t answer, but his monitored heart rate increases. Kwang-kyun yells that Man-ho hired someone to kill Jin-sook and Clara to cover up the illegal teenage prostitution in Mujin twenty years ago, and that the murderer is still on the loose. Just as Man-soo’s father starts to speak, Royal Group security drags Kwang-kyun, kicking and screaming, out of the room.
After Kwang-kyun leaves, Man-soo’s father calls someone, asking how far they’re going to go with it — how many people are they going to kill? He orders that person to stop or else.
The woman hanging from the butcher’s hook is not Ha-ram. Whew. Frustrated, Black wonders where Ha-ram is.
A flashback reveals that after Ha-ram visited the sister-in-law, she called the police, only to realize she heard the recording of the appliance truck in her vision of the woman’s death. Which meant the woman was being killed right at that moment. Ha-ram broke into the house to find the woman’s dead body. Ha-ram took a knife from the kitchen, prepared to find Scarface in the house, but she saw that Scarface was already driving away. Ha-ram stole a nearby bike and hurried after him.
She found his truck in the woods and slowly advanced, knife at the ready. But he surprised her from behind, throwing her down — which caused her phone fall out of her pocket. Wielding the knife, she demanded to know why Scarface killed her father. She lunged forward, swinging the knife, but Scarface easily avoided her and instead grabbed her in a chokehold, his knife at her throat.
He asked her who her father was, and seemed momentarily surprised when she told him it was detective Kang Soo-hyuk. Then Ha-ram bit Scarface’s wrist, breaking free from his grasp to try and attack him again, but that was when he stabbed her in the stomach.
Ha-ram, in her current hiding place, is still alive, clutching at her wound.
Black sees Scarface’s photos of his victims, and realizes that there’s a spot for two more photos that are missing. Black looks through the man’s belongings, trying to figure out who he’ll kill next, but all he can find are the Chinese money and anonymous threatening letters like the ones that were sent to Leo. Black wonders if Leo is the next victim.
Black hears a door open. Scarface peers in, but doesn’t see anyone inside. Black jumps out of his hiding place and attacks Scarface, pressing him against the walls as he demands to know where Ha-ram is. Scarface says it’s pointless looking for a dead body.
Scarface fights back, and is a surprisingly equal match for Black. He grabs Black and shoves him near the bone cutter. Black’s Reaper tattoo starts to glow as he tries to avoid being chopped into bits, and Scarface realizes he’s seen that kind of tattoo before.
Black finally gets the upper-hand by dangling Scarface upside-down from a butcher’s hook. Scarface says that Black won’t be able to find Ha-ram if Black kills him, and promises to take him to her body.
In the truck, Scarface drives while Black presses a butcher’s hook to Scarface’s neck. Scarface confesses he wouldn’t have killed Ha-ram if he knew how important she was to Black. After all, it was thanks to Moo-gang telling him to stop taking his medication that Scarface was able to break out of the mental hospital.
Back then, Scarface was a drugged zombie. When Moo-gang finally found him, he demanded to know if Scarface killed Joon, but Scarface was too out of it to respond. Moo-gang admitted that he thought Scarface was behind it all, but he’d since learned that another person related to teh case had been killed in America after Scarface was admitted to the hospital. Which meant there had to be someone else calling the shots.
Moo-gang told Scarface not to take any medication from then on so that he would be sane when Moo-gang came back to visit. Since that day, Scarface secretly spat out his pills and hid them. Once he was no longer drugged, he waited for Moo-gang, studying the photo of Joon with young Moo-gang.
When Moo-gang didn’t show up, Scarface decided to break out of the hospital. He burnt the photo of young Moo-gang and Joon and left in the toilet, thinking it had been flushed away — but the portion showing Joon was found.
Scarface stabbed the hospital director, blaming her for being a part of the conspiracy that got him admitted to the hospital in the first place. He attacked her as she was reassuring someone that Scarface is still drugged out of his mind, and didn’t know what videotape the person on the other end was asking about.
Scarface was hired to get tapes from Clara so that he could get his wife’s insurance payout. Scarface had found Clara at the abandoned dye factory — where, thank goodness, young Moo-gang’s blow with the shovel only knocked her unconscious and didn’t kill her.
Scarface asked for the tape, and Clara said she didn’t know where it was, but was convinced Seon-young must have it. Scarface warned her that he’d cut her throat if she didn’t tell him where the tape was, and Clara told him to just kill her. Joon, hiding nearby, made a sound that caught Scarface’s attention. That gave Clara an opportunity to attack Scarface, but he stabbed her in the gut, killing her.
Scarface insists he didn’t kill Joon. Scarface lied to the guy who hired him, telling him that he’d found and hid the tape. Scarface said he’d only give up the tape once he got the insurance payout, and that’s how he ended up at the mental hospital. The man who hired him wanted to make sure no one could find the tape. Scarface is convinced the man who hired him was the one who killed Joon.
When Scarface happily says he’s been killing everyone connected to “that man,” Black angrily points out that Scarface had no reason to kill Ha-ram, and Scarface defensively insists that Ha-ram came at him first. Besides, the man who hired him also hired him to kill Ha-ram’s father, so in that sense, she’s related to the case. Scarface shouts that everyone died because of “him,” so that’s why they should work together to get revenge.
He maniacally informs Black that there’s only one person left, the person closest to the man who hired him. Only when the boss man is agonized over the loss of his loved one, then Scarface will kill him. Scarface hops up and down in crazed glee as he shouts about how much fun he had killing Ha-ram, anticipating how much fun it will be to kill the boss man.
Black, offended by Scarface’s murderous glee, punches Scarface until the truck swerves off the road and hits a tree, knocking Black into the windshield and causing him to release his grip on Scarface. Seeing his opportunity, Scarface repeatedly stabs at the unconscious Black and then dumps him on the side of the road.
Man-ho gets word that the detectives have issued a search-and-seizure against him, but his political connections mean the request has been called for now. When Man-ho asks about the original copies from 1997, he’s informed that Man-soo has them. Outraged, Man-ho wonders why his brother is avoiding his calls. Then he grabs the butterfly watch from his watch drawer.
Kwang-kyun is in full “Crazy Dog” rage about his search-and-seizure being denied. But he’s distracted when the phone rings, surprised the caller ID shows it’s his personal cell phone. Man-ho’s father has Kwang-kyun’s phone, and asks to meet. After he hangs up, Man-ho’s father studies the key in his hand.
It seems everyone is at the hospital, since Ha-ram’s mother is visiting her stepson, Leo’s drama is filming there, Tiffany and Hyo-jin need to refill her prescription, and Missing-finger is keeping an eye on the lobby. Scarface is there as well, pretending to be a maintenance worker as he makes his way down the hall.
Leo takes a break after filming his scene and tosses aside the script to instead study another of the mystery threat letters. He then puts on an eye mask to catch a nap. Missing-finger enters just then, pretending to be part of the film crew, and asks Leo to leave.
Man-ho barges into his father’s room, demanding to know where the original copy of Scarface’s insurance payout is.
Scarface enters the room where Leo had been napping, and thinks he’s going to stab Leo. But it’s actually Missing-finger, pretending to be Leo. He grabs Scarface just as Black portals in from the bathroom. Scarface is stunned, because he thought he had killed Black. But of course Black can’t die, and his amazing healing power means he’s ready to fight Scarface.
Man-ho tosses the butterfly watch at his father, asking if he really gave Man-ho the same watch that Byung-shik gave him as a bribe. His father says that it’s time for them to stop, but Man-ho says it’s too late. Man-ho vows to go after anyone who gets in the way of all the effort he’s gone through to protect Royal Group. He screams at his father to just die already, and he grabs the pillow from behind his father’s head.
Kwang-kyun and the other detectives arrive at the hospital, and as one of them hurries into the lobby, he sees Scarface running out and tries to stop him. Scarface just pushes him aside and grabs the detective’s gun.
Scarface hijacks a bus, where the passengers include Ha-ram’s mother, Tiffany, and Hyo-jin. Black’s in hot pursuit, and hops into Kwang-kyun’s car so they can chase after the bus. Black attempts to jump from Kwang-kyun’s car to the bus.
Soo-wan discovers that Moo-gang’s mystery “BT” informant is the son of the original insurance investigator, the one who first looked into Scarface’s fire and insurance claim. The original insurance investigator died a few years ago in America.
The dirty detective is also hurrying to follow the bus, and he worriedly asks the other person on the phone about what will happen to the hostages. Moo-gang clings to the open bus window, trying to force Scarface off the road. But the dirty detective pulls up alongside and shoots at Scarface, which hits Black instead.
Black demands Scarface tell him where he last saw Ha-ram, but just as it looks like Scarface is about to answer, the dirty detective shoots and hits Scarface, instantly killing him. The bus veers of the road but manages to safely stop. Black sees Scarface being escorted to the afterlife by his Reapers.
Black screams after him to tell him where Ha-ram is, but Scarface’s soul continues walking away. Black clutches his heart as he crumples to the ground.
Somewhere, Ha-ram sits unconscious, still holding her stomach.
I don’t know how we can get so many answers yet I still feel almost as clueless as ever. While we know exactly how Clara was killed, and why so many others were killed, we’re still not much closer to figuring out what happened to Joon. Well, except by process of elimination, since we know Scarface wasn’t responsible. He’d want full credit for killing Joon, and besides, he’s all about stabbing his victims in the gut — not running them over with a car.
I was a little surprised that we killed off Scarface so soon, since such a crazy villain like him would normally be good fodder as the main villain for an entire drama, not just for a few episodes. But it’s not like this show is exactly lacking in villains, is it? Everything seems to point to Man-ho being the main guy behind it all, since he signed off on the insurance payout originally, it’s implied that he was Mi-so’s lover, and he has a butterfly watch (I’m not saying “the” watch because we already know there are two — the other one is presumably still being investigated by the watch expert). He also made it clear that he’d do whatever it takes to remove any obstacles that prevent Royal Group from succeeding. Plus he killed a dog in cold blood! Definitely a villain. I’m not sure if he’s the villain, though. I won’t complain if he is, if only so I can be satisfied that karma works and Sip-gyeong’s death is avenged.
I was also surprised that so many characters were barely visible this episode. Not just the obvious, such as the show trying to convince us that Ha-ram is dead (She’s not dead! She can’t be! There’s no way! She’s just… sleeping in her mysterious location! Yeah!). But Man-soo didn’t show up once, which is odd, since he lives with Black and definitely knows a lot about those missing 1997 files. Then I briefly wondered if Missing-finger was actually on the side of the good, since he knew Scarface would attack Leo and he intervened to try and capture Scarface. I don’t know what I was expecting with Missing-finger, but him randomly showing up to save someone’s life in order to take down a bad guy doesn’t exactly fit the profile I’ve created of him over the last few episodes. He’s definitely not a good guy, but then again, he did kill Byung-shik, who was a baddie. I guess Missing-finger exists in a morally grey world where he’s a brutal killer and torturer — but at least he also kills bad guys?
I’m slightly mystified why Black didn’t confront Creepy Doc about having the capsule. Perhaps it’s just the dazed shock of believing Ha-ram’s dead, but you’d think Black would realize there’s something suspicious about the the fact Creepy Doc seemed to know about the capsule. Then again, I do love Black becoming more emotional (aka “human”) so I can’t really complain about him suddenly forgetting that his original purpose is to track down Loser. Seeing Black determined to take vengeance for Ha-ram’s death (even though she’s totally not dead! NOT DEAD!) was pretty exciting, since it clearly wasn’t just about him being angry that he could no longer use her vision skills, but because he truly cared about her and felt responsible for her.
Although I was a little astonished at those fight scenes. I didn’t expect someone like Scarface to be so athletic, especially against Black who can easily take down an entire gang of thugs without breaking a sweat. Yet Scarface, this little old man who recently escaped from a mental hospital where he was in terrible shape, was able to grab Black and throw him around, making Black so angry that it caused Black’s neck tattoo to glow (or do whatever it is that causes the tattoo to glow). When Scarface said he’d seen that tattoo before, I immediately rewound to watch the fight scene against Ha-ram’s father. It looks like we’ll still have to wait for official proof that Ha-ram’s father was a Reaper, because while I could see in the blocking the potential for Scarface to see a glowing neck tattoo, there was no tattoo visible. I’m convinced that’s where Scarface saw it before, though.
I’m also wondering about Scarface’s “last” kill, the one that most would hurt the man who hired him. Why Leo? If Man-ho is the main villain that all the clues point to, this doesn’t make sense to me. Leo and Man-soo might be friends, but that’s no reason why Leo’s death would particularly hurt Man-ho. Considering Leo can’t be any older than Ha-ram, he would have been a child at the time everything happened in Mujin. I’ve enjoyed piecing together the vague clues and hints to figure out where the show is going, but this one has me baffled, even though I feel like the clues must be leading to something. Leo was one of the last people Moo-gang visited before he got shot, the day he was apparently getting some major evidence about Joon’s death. Leo’s Ha-ram’s favorite star. Leo was a major reason Loser killed himself and inhabited Creepy Doc. Leo saved the rookie writer. Leo has a drug addiction. Scarface labored over sending those threatening letters to Leo. These are not just coincidences — nothing on this show is a coincidence. Which means Leo is important — but why?