Hierarchy – K-drama Episode 4 Recap & Review

Revenge, Desire, Romance: The Heart of the Matter

Episode 4 of Hierarchy starts with us jumping back in time and seeing more of what happened to In-han. There was actually a car after him on the street, which stalked him down the alleyway and eventually ran him over. The car belongs to Woo-jin, which he took back home into his garage after the night. The front is all dented and the windscreen is smashed. Before leaving, he takes the phone from the compartment.

Back in the present, Tae-ho and Ha work together and open Ri-an’s locker at school. There, the latter is shocked when he notices pictures of Jae-i. And specifically, how Jae-i is smiling, given he’s never seen that from her.

As for Ri-an, he continues to find himself at odds with his mother. She’s too wrapped up in work to care about her son, and instead of offering words of kindness, she reminds him of his reputation and not to get involved in cheap scandals. He has a strict schedule to adhere to with tutors all day, so he doesn’t get a break.

Some time later, Ri-an heads over to see Woo-jin. He bemoans not coming over more often given they’re good friends. They talk about Jae-I briefly, and her anxiety, but the crux of the conversation stems from just hanging out

Jae-i supresses her emotions and follows her father as they prepare weapons before hunting. The conversation inevitably turns to Jae-i’s “scandal” and her pa reminds her to get ready as she’s inbound to New York shortly. However, he does mention how “what happened to the last kid wasn’t enough?” which seems to hint toward In-han and her father potentially being involved in some way.

At school, Jae-i approaches Kang Ha and apologizes for her father’s actions. It turns out at the parent’s evening he berated Ha, telling the kid he has no right to address him. When Jae-i walks away, Ha asks about her feelings for Ri-an but she shrugs it off. Ha suggests they try dating properly and asks her not to be anxious anymore. This reminds him of Ri-an, given it’s exactly how he pitched being with her. Jae-i refuses, pointing out she needs to survive this world and the only way she can do that is by stifling her emotions.

On the way back to her class, she bumps into Ms Han. She tells Jae-i to apologize but the teacher happens to be sporting a new Hermes bag. This was a gift from Woo-jin and it seems like she knows Han is mixed up with Woo-jin.

Meanwhile, Ju-won speaks to Tae-ho in confidence about his friendship with Ha. He promises not to say anything but does bring up how he looks very similar to In-han. As for Kang Ha, he learns from He-ra that apparently Jae-i was the one behind In-han’s death. Apparently Ri-an was way too busy and wrapped up in his own work to bother with something like this himself.

In class, Jae-i receives another video of her kissing someone. She begins to grow anxious and leaves class, prompting both Ri-an and Ha to follow. The former speaks to our protagonist and warns that Jae-i’s safety is on the line and her anxiety has spiked. The way Ha looks at Ri-an and refuses to back down gets his suspicions up and he decides to get his cronies to do a background check on the kid.

He-ra meets Jae-i and the pir end up having an argument, declaring that their friendship is over. The former defiantly states that Ri-an is hers. Jae-i calls her bluff and agrees. When she walks away, we get a pointless montage with He-ra and Jae-i’s past. They’re both unlikable characters, why are we seeing this?

Anyway, He-ra continues to scheme and she finds out about Jae-i leaving soon after heading to her vacation house. Jae-i is definitely there but so too is Kang Ha. He promises to stay by her side no matter what. Eventually though she lets slip that she’s being blackmailed and there’s nothing he can do about it. Jae-i admits that she’s killed someone, and Kang Ha immediately believes it’s In-han.

At the same time He-ra marches over to Ri-an’s place and tells him about Jae-i leaving. She makes her play and asks him to make a new life with her given he likes her. However, Ri-an is too preoccupied with his investigation, where he’s figured out that In-han and Kang Ha are actually twin brothers. And after this reveal, Kang Ha admits that very same truth to Jae-i.

The Episode Review

In terms of content in this show, there actually isn’t too much to sink your teeth into. Sure, we have the drama between kids but it’s not dramatic enough to stand out like something akin to Penthouse or Elite. Instead, this feels like a watered down version of that Spanish series, lacking the spice that made it so memorable, which is a real shame. There’s definitely potential here but right now this show feels flawed.

The series does have some stand-out moments, including the reveal about Ha and In-han being brothers, but is that enough to lift it above mediocrity? I don’t think so. Hopefully the second half of this show improves.

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Expect a full-season review once the season ends!

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2 thoughts on “Hierarchy – K-drama Episode 4 Recap & Review”

  1. Hey, I do apologize I definitely got that mixed up! I’ve just gone in and corrected that on every recap now so it should read correctly. My apologies!

    -Greg W

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