It’s time to discuss all things episode 9 of Prison Playbook. Join me, Kmuse, as I discuss our prisoners (and guards) various regrets in life. And how, instead of falling apart, our favorite characters, pick themselves up and make lemonade out of lemons.
To date, this might be my favorite episode. It had the perfect mix of comedy, angst, and character development. As usual, there was a ton of stuff thrown at us but I am going to only focus on 3 characters and their story arcs. Sorry, Captain Yoo….. your plot will have to be mentioned in a future recap. This one is all about Je Hyuk, Joon Ho, & Dr. Ko.
Je Hyuk continues to train for his eventual return to baseball. Only, it is not the sure thing we once thought it was. Despite Je Hyuk’s ability to hit the bullseye using his right hand, he isn’t able to throw the distance when he scoots back to the length of a professional game. This drawback means one thing….time to increase his strength training in the cell. Which leads us to one of my favorite moments of the episode where Je Hyuk and Captain Yoo have a push-up competition. It was adorable and I could watch them competing forever.
Over and over we are hit with the concept that if Je Hyuk doesn’t have baseball, he really doesn’t have a lot of fallbacks. Je Hyuk’s carpenter skills have not improved since his promotion to chief. We watch as Je Hyuk attempts to make a pen holder. The first attempt is to short and the pen falls right out. The second time he overcompensates and makes it so tall that the pen disappears into the hole and cannot be retrieved. Obviously, making furniture is not something Je Hyuk can make a career of. Because of his inability to make furniture, or force other inmates to make furniture, Je Hyuk is being transferred to the gardening crew. I am anticipating some hilarious gardening hijinks in the future.
There are so many layers to Joon Ho’s character and I am adoring every single one of them. Now that Joon Ho and BFF Sister are dating we are able to learn a lot of details about his life that occurred when he was separated from Jee Hyuk.
Through BFF Sister and Joon Ho’s brother becoming besties, we hear the story of Joon Ho being one of the creators of a company that is now making the big bucks. Back in his college years, Joon Ho chose to be bought out rather than accept stocks when they sold it which meant that Joon Ho got a single payout and years later, his old coworkers are millionaires. To say that there is a tiny bit of regret would be an understatement.
We also find out that Joon Ho might be changing jobs yet again as he looks into getting his teaching certificate. His lack of love for the job (except when it comes to Jee Hyuk) is noticed by the inmates he is in charge of. Specifically, two new transfers who are known for forcing their cellmates into fake suicide attempts. You might be wondering what they get out of this. Turns out that if an inmate successfully stops a suicide attempt they get merits and privileges. So in order to get these merits the two inmates force people to strangle themselves in order to save them. And if their cellmates accidentally die before they can be saved……..oops.
The evil inmates consider Joon Ho a joke. Someone that isn’t going to get in their way as long as they do the basic polite lip-service. Little do they know that Joon Ho has a hidden badass side which will come out if they cross a line. I can’t have been the only one that cheered when Joon Ho cursed and beat one of the evil inmates when he attempts to hurt someone innocent.
Out of all the inmates, Dr. Ko is the one I feel the most sympathy for. Everyone else actually had some kind of truth to their conviction (not including Captain Yoo) but Dr. Ko is innocent. A total dupe who fell for his companies promises and money, but innocent beyond that. I think it goes without saying that Dr. Ko regrets agreeing to take the blame the first time around.
His company is yet again in trouble with the law. Obviously, they have learned nothing from their previous issues. Thinking they can just put all the blame for this crime on Dr. Ko, they attempt to woo him into confessing again. Thankfully, Dr. Ko is having none of that and declares that he will not be raising his child on crooked money. He (and his roommates) convince Lieutenant Paeng to copy the conversation between Dr. Ko and his previous boss. Which he promptly uses to blackmail the company into giving him a severance pay and additional money for his child’s schooling. Booyah. Bad guys are paying out and Dr. Ko is getting what he deserves from his despicable bosses. Sure, blackmail is a tiny bit illegal, but no one deserves it more than those fat cat scum suckers.
So there you have it. Sure, there is a ton of regret throughout this episode, but I love how with each character we get a realization that while things are not perfect, nothing is hopeless either.
Until the next roll call…
Dramas with a Side of Kimchi