Juvenile Justice – Season 1 Episode 2 Recap & Review

The Accomplice

Episode 2 of Juvenile Justice starts with Tae-Ju charging into the interrogation room, where Eun-Seok is ready to question Ye-Eun.

Despite a bandage across her hand, she relays on to Tae-Ju that Ye-Eun’s attorneys are acting as her legal guardians. Given her dad and mum are both out the country, it’s fallen to Geobo law firm to represent her. Specifically, an attorney called Ms Heo is present, but her attempts to hit out at Eun-Seok’s late-night interrogation is met with venomous wrath.

Eun-Seok has the phone records and enough intimidation and tenacity to crack Je-Eun’s defences. She brings up Seong-U’s pleas while he was taken out of court and even plays the footage of her in the elevator too.

Given she was actually at the cafe after-hours and violating her probation anyway, even if she wasn’t involved in the murder, Eun-Seok could still technically put her away at the Juvenile Center.

All this commotion places Woo Su-Mi and Seo Beom (two of the staff at the Criminal Collegiate) in a tough position. They’re clearly undermining Kang’s rules but he overhears them in the corridor and reprimands them both, lashing out and throwing papers across the room.

Eun-Seok shows up and sticks up for her staff, taking the brunt of the blame and also calls out that the juvenile center is a joke and rife for exploitation unless they throw the book at these kids and try to get a fair sentence for them all. Breathing heavily, he caves as Eun-Seok confirms she’s going to use the law mercilessly.

First up comes social media records, and specifically Seong-U communicating with someone intimately online about the crime. While she falls asleep at her desk, Tae-Ju speaks to Seong-U’s mum in confidence. He has a much softer touch, and believes in making sure these kids don’t re-offend, intent on rehabilitating them.

Eun-Seok’s unconventional methods and brash attitude causes uproar when reporters catch wind of what’s happened. Specifically, the handling of Ye-Eun being taken in for questioning is the main topic here.

That not only reflects badly on Eun-Seok and the case in general, it also looks bad for Kang. Eun-Seok is well aware of who’s responsible for this news, and calls out Ms Heo when she arrives at court. Heo smirks as Eun-Seok is reprimanded by Kang for what’s happened.

The ensuing result of this sees the case reassigned to Tae-Ju… who tries to cover for her until Eun-Seok stops him. She’s aware that she’s in the wrong but likens it to losing an arm in order to cut off the head of the enemy.

Despite this news becoming mainstream, it doesn’t dissuade any of the judges as they prepare for the murder case to go ahead. Both Seong-U and Ye-Eun are on the stand, with Kang, Eun-Seok and Tae-Ju all present.

The trial goes ahead and the lawyers realize they’re in a bit of a bind with both Ye-Eun and Seong-U together. So naturally, Eun-Seok suggests separating them both to incriminate the other. It works an absolute treat, and the pair end up screaming out their truths to one another.

Given they both made voluntary confessions, Ji-Hu’s mum takes the stand and pleads with the judges to give out a tough sentence.

That sentence comes in the form of Ye-Eun put in jail for 20 years while Seong-U is given probation level 10 and 2 years imprisonment. There’s justice for Ji-Hu, and as Eun-Seok watches the pair being taken out the court, the camera pans down to show a photo of Ji-Hu on her desk.

When Seong-U’s mother comes storming in, confronting Tae-Ju about changing her mind, Eun-Seok is quick to point out her son is responsible for what happened to Ji-Hu. and deserves to be punished.

In private, Eun-Seok calls out Tae-Ju for making false promises and then sighs harshly, telling him she can never get used to juvenile cases. She does also tell Tae-Ju that he’s done a good job before heading home.

But did the punishment make up for the crime? Will the culprits actually feel remorse for their actions? And is there such a thing as justice? These questions circle this heart-wrenching story as the camera pans down to show a frightened girl – Yu-Ri – banging on the doors to the juvenile center.

The Episode Review

Juvenile Justice delivers another very good episode; a great follow-up to the first episode and closure for the Seong-U case. This works really well to set up an episodic format for this show, with different cases wheeling in to show a different side to the criminal system and how our judges tackle these various issues.

This episode was quite the dramatic affair though, with Ye-Eun and Seong-U trying to play the system but coming up short in the end. While they both ended up behind bars, is that really enough to make up for what they’ve done to poor Ji-Hu?

This episode does a great job depicting that and manages to weave this story into a poignant and thought provoking chapter that asks some very tough questions. The final scenes hint that we’ve got lots more drama to come though, leaving the door wide open for where this one may go next.

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You can read our full season review of Juvenile Justice here!


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