Episode 11 of The Penthouse begins with Ro-Na forced to write a statement about the cigarettes found in her bag and exactly who she was smoking with. Obviously she’s not responsible and Seok-Hoon refuses to stand by and watch this witch-hunt take place.
He bursts in the room and tells Do-Ki that he was the one who placed the cigarettes there. This obviously throws him completely off-guard but eventually Su-Ryeon comes to pick Ro-Na up from school, with her staying over that evening.
Back at the villa, Yoon-Cheol heads into the bedroom brandishing a shotgun. He places the gun up to Joo’s face, goading him on and telling him to fire. And fire he does – he shoots them both in cold blood and watches them bleed out… but all of that happens to be a vision.
Instead, the truth is Yoon-Cheol changed his mind at the last second and decided against shooting. Instead, he head outside and punched a tree in frustration, screaming to the heavens while sporting bloodied knuckles.
Yoon-Cheol contemplates whether he and Yoon-Hee would ever get together again and kisses her neck. Yoon-Hee thinks about kissing him back but changes her mind – just as Su-Ryeon watches from her window – and decides that they shouldn’t do this. Pulling away, she hurries off.
Meanwhile, Ho-Dong visits Joo at his office midway through him trying to contact Rogan Lee. He’s in no mood for games though and asks exactly what he’s doing. He mentions a deal with Seok-Kyung and even calls Joo by his first name. When he’s told to leave, the hired help follow and beat Ho-Dong down, sending a message not to get involved again.
Seo-Jin and Joo head back home after sleeping together but Joo comments on his gun being moved and Seo-Jin even notices mud trailing across the floor. When they make it back to Hera Palace, she sees Yoon-Cheol’s car caked in mud and her husband nowhere to be seen. It turns out he slept the night at Yoon-Hee’s but simply stayed on the sofa.
Yoon-Hee speaks to Su-Ryeon and admits that she took photos of Seo-Jin’s husband but things didn’t go any further between them. Despite wanting to, she decided to put Ro-Na first and refused to send the pictures on.
Yoon-Cheol asks for a divorce from Seo-Jin and promises to take Eun-Byeol with him too. When she notices messages on his phone from Yoon-Hee, she immediately confronts Yoon-Hee and slaps her across the face. She smiles in retaliation, knowing that soon she’ll make Seo-Jin leave the palace. Her woes continue too when Do-Ki mentions the cigarettes. Apparently he’s got a “golden card” and as such, gets away with no punishment.
When Seok-Hoon leaves, Ho-Dong confronts him about the cigarettes and asks him to apologize to Eun-Woo for beating him up. Hoon refuses to do so, prompting Ho-Dong to take him into the boxing ring and goad him into fighting. The pair trade blows but Ho-Dong is too strong and hits him in all his pressure points – away from the face of course. Leaving Seok-Hoon in a heap on the floor, he walks away.
Meanwhile, Ma-Ri pays off one of the guards at the local jail and hooks up with one of the inmates there. Quite who this is however, remains a secret.
Su-Ryeon finds the script for the Cheong-A Ambassador gig and takes a screenshot of it. In fact, she takes numerous pictures of the room too while she’s at it.
Yoon-Cheol intends to speak to Seo-Jin’s father about a divorce but Seo-Jin shows up and throws a serious spanner in the works. Angry, he takes her outside but she uses Eun-Byeol as a weapon against him. While he’s called into surgery, Seo-Jin speaks to her Father who refuses to tolerate a divorce in the family – especially after her insistence to marry Yoon-Cheol in the first place.
Wanting the truth, Seo-Jin checks the security footage in her husband’s car and sees first-hand exactly why Yoon-Cheol is so riled up. He’s seen everything between her and Joo. Unfortunately she’s interrupted by the hospital calling her in with big news.
It turns out Yoon-Cheol’s hand from punching the tree caused serious problems in surgery but Seo-Jin’s connections keep him from being fired. Now Seo-Jin has the leverage to use against him and as the truth comes spilling out, she gives him a choice to come back like everything’s okay or suffer the consequences.
Kyu-Jin watches all this take place and he too knows about the affair. As we jump back in time, we find out Kyu-Jin intercepted Seol-A’s phone, managing to get the passcode and seeing the incriminating footage hidden within of Joo and Seo-Jin together. He promises to have something up his sleeve and isn’t happy that Joo and Seo-Jin got him involved in this in the first place.
That evening, all our characters join together at Hera Palace with a new petition to get Yoon-Hee out the building once and for all. With no Yoon-Cheol there, the rest of the residents are forced to vote for whether she stays or not
Given the votes are confidential, Seo-Jin and Joo are shocked when it’s voted as 4-3 in favour of keeping Yoon-Hee in. Seo-Jin is absolutely enraged but now we see who voted against. Kyu-Jin, his wife, Su-Ryeon and presumably Yoon-Cheol too. Now allowed to stay in the Palace, Yoon-Hee’s luck is finally starting to change for the better.
Ho-Dong meanwhile listens to voice recordings from Seol-A kept on his phone regarding her Mum. She wants to find her and reveals that she doesn’t want her Mother to be happy. This, of course, links back to Su-Ryeon whom he knows is Seol-A’s Mum.
He sends something incriminating (presumably the boxing ring video) to her, Ma-Ri and Sang-A, gathering them at school and tasking the ladies with recycling as punishment. Even worse, Ho-Dong returns and berates Su-Ryeon for slacking off, despite the other two being the ones to goof around.
At the Cheong A foundation, Ro-Na predictably gets bad scores thanks to Seo-Jin’s influence. Eun-Byeol however doesn’t know this and heads over to see Ro-Na, enraged by her growing closer to Seok-Hoon. She takes off her hair clip and hurls herself at Ro-Na, threatening to hurt her.
Meanwhile, Ho-Dong continues on and confronts Su-Ryeon about the truth. He knows who Seol-A is to her and squares up to her face. Seo-Jin watches from afar though and although she can’t see what they’re saying, clearly senses something is going on here.
The Episode Review
With the tables turning, the vote inside Hera Palace shows that Yoon-Hee is finally starting to win over those around Seo-Jin while Seo-Jin herself begins to lose her grip over the hierarchical ideas consuming the palace.
The affection Seok-Hoon feels for Ro-Na is a nice touch and adds an extra dimension to this drama, with a light love triangle brewing between the kids. Speaking of triangles though, the situation between Joo, Yoon-Cheol and Seo-Jin reaches fever pitch and threatens to spill over and explode at any moment.
For now though, the show does a good job combining these intricate character threads with a really dramatic storyline. It’s taken a while to warm to this level of makjang but now that there’s a good balance between the protagonists and antagonists, this one is definitely becoming more interesting.
Ho-Dong’s influence here too looks to be a real wild-card entry in this one though. With his pretense with Su-Ryeon dropped, all eyes now turn to next week to see exactly what’s going to happen next.