I went into Two with half anticipation and half trepidation. Anticipate — cos I know Cho Jong-seuk is a good actor, nervous — cos Hyeri is a pretty inexperienced actress. Thankfully, the former won. [kooriyuki: I don’t dislike Hyeri, but I wish she has more than one facial expression. It’s distracting enough for me to enjoy Show fully whenever she’s on screen]
- Cho Jong-seuk (from Jealousy Incarnate) as Cha Dong-tak. A morose but sharp detective. He loses his partner to a helmeted murderer and is on a mission of revenge.
- Kim Soon-ho (from Chief Kim) as Gong Soo-chang. The exact opposite of Dong-tak — he is a glib talking scam artist, but later has his soul evicted from his body after an accident when Dong-tak captures him for murder of his partner.
- Hyeri (from Reply 1988) as Song Ji-an. A feisty and determined reporter, whom Dong-tak (and Soo-chang) likes.
We open to see Dong-tak and Soo-chang surrounded by a mean bikers’ gang, and both of them are cuffed together. They try to fight their way out…
…while the narrative rolls back to give us some background. Dong-tak’s partner and revered sunbae was murdered while the 2 were on a case, and Dong-tak had been actively seeking out all the potential murderers. The Chief of Prosecutor heard about it, and not-so-subtly places pressure on Chief Police to stop Dong-tak’s dogged investigation.
And to do that, the baddies throw in Soo-chang as a scapegoat. Evidence and an eye witness were fabricated to build up the case that Soo-chang was the murderer, since he “harboured a grudge” against Dong-tak’s partner, who had earlier put him behind bars. However, even though Soo-chang has fallen back to his old ways as a scam artist after release, we see that he had good relationship with Dong-tak’s partner, who regularly visited him in prison and counselled him.
We are also introduced to Ji-an, a news reporter, who is currently falling out of favour from her boss, cos a new (and curvy) news anchor has smooched her way up the corporate ladder. Desperate to gain back her creds, she hangs around the station trying to sniff out the next scoop, and gets to hear about Soo-chang being the suspect whom Dong-tak is after.
Dong-tak did manage to capture a protesting Soo-chang (who claims innocence), but on the way back to the station, they are surrounded by a biker gang.
The fun part of Two comes after all the intro and exposition — hmm, from ep2 onwards? When Soo-chang becomes Dong-tak’s “ghost” partner. Credit goes to Cho Jong-seuk for successfully capturing the flamboyance that is Soo-chang, that you KNOW it isn’t him in that body. And surprisingly, Soo-chang with his street smartness is extremely effective at getting the criminals to talk. In contrast, Dong-tak, who only knows how to “talk” with his fists, has zero patience with the people he hauls in, and in the end, his interrogation sessions with them either ends with little information gathered, or a tight-lipped mobster. Not surprising then that they all band against him to testify that he used “violence” on them at the slightest drop of a hat.
Hopefully Dong-tak recognises Soo-chang’s values too, and drops the “once-a-criminal-always-a-criminal” type of thinking. Which, in ep5, he is starting to realise, since he is getting opened to the idea of letting Soo-chang borrow his body once in a while when he is in a deadlock. I’m looking forward to the bromance between the 2 male leads, and the funny 3-way relationship they will have with Ji-an.