If you’ve watched the first episode of Voice, you know that it ends with a major cliffhanger. Detective Moo invades the wrong building, and the stoic killer’s about to smash a hammer into the female victim’s skull. (Yikes!) Does Detective Moo arrive in time to save Bok Nim, or does Kwon Joo fail in her mission to right past wrongs with her new ‘Golden Time’ dispatch team?
[Be Forewarned: Spoilers Below].
Well, turns out Bok Nim has some fight to her. She kicks that killer straight in the balls and continues to do so as much as she can with the encouragement of Kwon Joo in order to buy herself more time. After a short span, her luck appears to run out. The killer corners her and proceeds to raise his mallet. This time, he’s not playing around. Bok Nim realizes it’s all over. But it isn’t. Detective Moo comes bursting through the door at the last minute, delivering a good smack to the criminal’s shiny, balding head. The two men dish it out while the call center can only listen in. Detective Moo urges Bok Nim to flee and although he’s looking at Bok Nim, he’s picturing his wife. It takes Bok Nim a few seconds to catch her bearings, but she ultimately does and flees the scene.
Kwon Joo calls for urgent back up as the two continue to beat into each other. Bok Nim runs outside and is immediately grabbed and thrown to the ground. She screams but it’s just some police officers struggling to tell her that she’s safe now. She warns them about Detective Moo fending off the serial killer as they prepare to transfer her to an ambulance. Back at the nut house, it seems like a pretty even fight, but Detective Moo ultimately gets the upper hand and knocks the criminal out. Then it gets a bit uncomfortable. He begins to comb through the bag of weapons, and it becomes clear that he’s contemplating some bad things. His weapon of choice becomes the hammer, and he uses it to stand himself up as he ominously makes his way over to the conked out criminal. He begins to unleash a storm of insults, calling the killer a scumbag with a worthless life. The call center is hearing everything, and it doesn’t take Kwon Joo too long to figure out his intentions. “Let’s put an end to it” Detective Moo says, and Kwon Joo immediately tells Detective Moo not to kill the man. “Nothing will change,” she says, but he’s already lifting the mallet with determination. A picture of his wife’s face just before it was cracked open flashes upon the screen and Kwon Joo begs, “Please don’t!”
The only sound is the mallet against the grubby tile floor. We see Detective Moo’s face. It’s filled with exhaustion, wrath, and a sense of defeat. He knows it would have been a bad move to murder the killer. The other cops rush in and successfully arrest the suspect. Detective Moo is safe, the victim is transferred to the hospital, and Kwon Joo has successfully wrapped up the situation within her ‘Golden Time’ goal. She turns to her superiors, who have witnessed the whole scene from start to finish. They’re clearly low key impressed, but disgusted at the same time because they have made fools of themselves (and because they’re simply a bunch of assholes). Anyway, by the grace of a higher power, the captain claims that she has a point, and allots her a six month trial period to prove that her ‘Golden Time’ team is necessary.
Back at the scene a few of the officers comment on Kwon Joo’s amazing hearing skills. Detective Moo notices that she’s constantly making references to sound. The higher ups discuss Kwon Joo’s tenacity. The captain, Bae Byung Gon (Jo Young Jin) yells at Jang Kyung Hak (Lee Hae Young) claiming that it was his failure to find the Go-Jeong Dong culprit that led to them all having to tolerate her arrogance. He further orders Jang Kyung to find out why Kwon Joo is intent on forming this ‘Golden Time’ team and who she plans on recruiting for it.
Meanwhile the news reports the arrest of the serial killer. Detective Moo is still thinking about Kwon Joo’s ability to hear the sound from the barber shop pole. It doesn’t seem humanly possible to him, so he consults his partner Dae Shik. Dae Shik pretty much says it’s impossible and advises Detective Moo not to buy into anything she says. Detective Moo storms his way up to the call center to confront Kwon Joo, but is informed that she’s currently visiting the victim, Bok Nim. Bok Nim’s mother thanks Kwon Joo for saving her daughter’s life. They exchange some kind words and Bok Nim tells Kwon Joo that she hopes her mistake works out in the end too. Kwon Joo thanks Bok Nim with a sad but grateful expression before heading out.
She goes to step into the elevator and, yep. There’s our detective Moo. But he’s not here to visit Bok Nim. He’s here to finish that conversation from earlier. He orders Kwon Joo to follow him to the roof, where he rips her a new one. He asks her to tell the truth about how she was able to know the day care center was the wrong building. She insists that she was able to hear the sound of the barber shop sign, and is telling the truth just like she tried to do in that courtroom three years ago. Dae Shik interrupts the chat with a call informing Detective Moo that Kwon Joo told the captain she knew about the barber shop from the old reports. This further pisses off Detective Moo and he tells her that if she ever felt sorry toward him, his son, and his wife, she’d quit making this team and never show her face again. He ends with a ‘shame on you, I pity your father’ speech that leaves Kwon Joo rattled.
Dae Shik and Detective Moo go out for a drink where they discuss the Kwon Joo incident. Detective Moo really isn’t in the mood, but Dae Shik entertains the possibility that she might actually have some sort of superhuman ability to hear. Detective Moo shuts this down immediately before leaving Dae Shik alone to pay for the meal (poor guy). Back at her home, Kwon Joo looks at her self-made case shrine. It’s a collage of images, news clips and details from her father’s case and Detective Moo’s wife’s case. She looks over everything with a burdensome heart before sitting down to gaze upon of a picture of herself and her father together. She promises to never falter again, and claims that she will pay the murderer back for what he did. She calls upon her father to help her find strength.
Detective Moo visits his son, Dong Woo (Kim Joon Hyuk), who’s currently suffering from chronic immune thrombocytopenia (for those wondering what the fuck that is: it’s a type of bleeding disorder where the blood doesn’t clot as it should; it’s usually not life-threatening). Dong Woo is cute as fuck, and, is so proud to have seen his dad on TV arresting a bad guy. He notices a cut on his father’s face and voices his concern. His father tells him not to worry and gives his son a present that he’s wanted for a long time. Dong Woo is excited to receive the present, but suddenly tells his father that he misses his mom’s food and that he had a dream about her last night where she looked at him with a sad smile. This clearly hits Detective Moo like a ton of bricks. It’s pretty obvious that he didn’t see it coming and it takes him a moment to gather his thoughts and tell his son that once he catches her murderer she will look at him with a happy smile every time she sees him.
Then he gets a call. He along with Dae Shik have been reassigned to Kwon Joo’s ‘Golden Time’ team. Cue meltdown. Looks like Kwon Joo has already hand picked her ideal team. It’s just a matter of talking them into accepting. Oh Hyeon Ho (Yesung), her first recruit, doesn’t really get much of a say. She pretty much tells him he’s starting right this moment and doesn’t give him much of an opportunity to object. The female recruit, Park Eun Soo (Son Eun Seo), seems to have a bit more back bone. She’s not interested so she makes that clear before getting up to leave. Kwon Joo, however, is pretty persuasive when she tells Eun Soo to think of her grandmother living alone at home; someone who would clearly benefit from a specialty team such as this one. This seems to hit home with Eun Soo, because she stops to think about it and no longer appears to raise any objections.
Kwon Joo leaves and is met with her next obstacle: Detective Moo. He is mad miffed and begins yelling into the phone that Kwon Joo has no right to order him around. She tells him that she’s his senior now, so he should refrain from speaking to her in such a manner. Then she bluntly says she’s busy and hangs up (I cackled). Detective Moo meets Dae Shik in what is supposedly their new office. The two throw a tantrum but Dae Shik is a lot more graceful and composed than Detective Moo who is basically beating his chest in defiance like a rabid gorilla. It doesn’t help when his old coworkers start to make fun of the pair for their reassignment. A huge fight breaks out but Kyung Hak walks in a puts an end to it by simply barking at them to stop acting like fools. He then pulls Detective Moo aside and low key chastises him for running around like Kwon Joo’s errand boy. Detective Moo claims that he didn’t really have a choice but Kyung Hak claims that Detective Moo must have led her on; he believes there’s no other reason why she’d be so intent on having him on her team.
During this time, the center receives an emergency call involving a seven year old boy who’s been stabbed by his mother at home. Some of the inexperienced employees inform Kwon Joo, and claim that the story is unbelievable enough to be a prank. It’s a number that doesn’t have a USIM chip, so it takes much longer to try and track down the location. Kwon Joo takes over the call and begins asking the important questions. We see that the boy really has been stabbed, and his labored breathing signals that prospects are looking mighty grim. He relays to Kwon Joo that his mother is trying to kill him and stabbed him in the belly with a knife. Kwon Joo issues a code zero, and calls Detectives Moo and Dae Shik into action. She gives them the details, including the general radius of the building in which the boy is hiding.
In an incredibly stupid move, Detective Moo tries to pick a fight via walkie-talkie as if there’s time to spare. Kwon Joo claps back that if he doesn’t move now, she’ll have his badge taken from him later tonight. This rustles Detective Moo’s jimmies and he begins to proclaim that he’s no longer a detective from this day forward. Thankfully, Dae Shik is able to persuade Detective Moo into mobilizing for the time being. Kwon Joo asks the child for more details about his stab wound. He reveals that he was stabbed under the belly button, and that he’s beginning to feel dizzy. Kwon Joo tells the boy that he’s brave; he’s not even crying. Ah Ram says he can hear his mother searching for him. Then we see and hear her threatening for him to come out. She’s sweaty, anxious, furious and definitely not winning mom of the year award. Ah Ram is bleeding very badly, so much so that it’s dripping down into the washing machine he’s taken refuge in. He tells Kwon Joo his mother has gone out the front door so Kwon Joo takes the opportunity to ask about his name, age, and mother’s identity. He says his name is Son Ah Ram and that he is seven years old. He’s starting to fade fast because a ton of blood is leaving his body. Kwon Joo realizes that his intestines might have been harmed in the stabbing. She tells him to clutch his palm against the wound tightly.
Ah Ram has trouble describing the house location because he’s always in his room. He says he could see other houses from the window, but they all looked the same. They’re red brick houses. Then Ah Ram confesses that he’s sleepy, and it’s clear that this severe injury is taking a toll on his body. Kwon Joo tells him he must stay awake in order for the police to rescue him. She relays some of this new information to Dae Shik and Detective Moo. Dae Shik comments that Ah Ram is younger than Detective Moo’s son Dong Woo. Then we see Ah Ram’s mom frantically searching for him outdoors. She’s disheveled, distraught, and easily startled when the neighbors come up to share some neighborhood gossip with her. She gets super uncomfortable when they begin discussing a current resident who abuses her son (too close to home I guess). Unfortunately, the two women are completely unsuspecting of her and are about to go report this other resident to the security office.
Ah Ram’s mom excuses herself and goes back inside. There she receives what I’m assuming is a very unpleasant phone call from her accomplice (maybe a husband?). She’s worried that Ah Ram has called the police and is scared of the consequences. Kwon Joo asks Ah Ram if he knows what floor number or room he lives in. He says it was so bright that he couldn’t see and that usually it’s quite dark in the apartment. He says Jin Gu told him that he’s always cold and sick because it’s always dark in the apartment. It turns out Jin Gu is a boy Ah Ram met in the apartment. Ah Ram reveals that his parents told them that he and his brother always eat too much and that’s why they’re poor. Kwon Joo asks if Ah Ram is with Jin Gu now, but Ah Ram says that Jin Gu went away to live at his grandmother’s house because he was always sick and that he doesn’t want to come back because he likes it better at his grandmother’s place. Jin Gu also told Ah Ram that there was another girl there before Ah Ram came, but that she’s also really sick so she’s staying at the hospital.
Kwon Joo then asks Ah Ram to explain how the stabbing occurred. He says that his mom said he should take a bath so that they could go on a picnic to the reservoir with his dad. In the flashback, we see that his mother tries to drown him, but Ah Ram gets scared and tries to run away. She orders him back into the tub where he begs her not to kill him before she ultimately stabs him. Then he pushes her, knocking her down long enough for him to escape and seek safety in the washing machine. The officers arrive at the security house where they get the apartment roster and that gossip from the two female residents. However, there are some discrepancies. The child they speak of is eight and not seven. Meanwhile, Ah Ram tells Kwon Joo that he remembers hearing the sound of a xylophone whenever his dad arrived home. Then his mom always cried. And now we see her, anxiously searching for Ah Ram. She’s on the phone again answering to whom I’m assuming is her husband. She tells him the police are out there and that she believes ‘the kid’ reported them. Then she claims ‘this is hard for her too’ and asks ‘why are you always blaming me?’
The cell phone slips from Ah Ram’s bloody hand, and the thud tips off his mother. She now knows he’s still in the apartment, whips out her knife, and tries to beckon him from his hiding spot. The two officers are heading for the eight year old child’s residence. They hear screaming and yelling from outside the door. Kwon Joo urges them not to go in, because she knows something’s not right here. Ah Ram is seven, not eight, and it wouldn’t make sense for there to be screaming yet if he’s hiding still undiscovered in the washing machine. Detective Moo decides to proceed anyway. Ah Ram’s mom enters the laundry room. She looks around before leaving, but then she comes back. She peers around the room once more, and that’s when she spots it. Ah Ram’s blood leaking from the washing machine. She opens the top and finds him there just as Detective Moo opens the door to the wrong residence. We hear Ah Ram scream, ‘Mommy, I’m sorry!’ and the episode ends.
Another extremely suspenseful and intense episode. I have a love hate relationship with these cliffhangers. I like that they draw you in and keep you tuning into the next episode, but I hate that I won’t know what happens to poor little Ah Ram until next week. Props to this child actor. I don’t know his name yet, but I think he’s done a fantastic job portraying a very difficult situation. I really hope they save Ah Ram because it would be so cruel if they didn’t. I don’t cry often but I swear to god if he dies I will be bawling my eyes out. Looks like we’ll have to wait until next week to find out!
Are you watching Voice? What do you think of the first two episodes? If you haven’t already, you can check out the five minute extended preview here.