Seo-Jin Is The Worst
After killing her Father last time out, episode 16 of The Penthouse begins with Seo-Jin scrambling into the security room and deleting all the CCTV footage. She burns the letter of appointment taking away her rights too, reminding herself that it was all her Father’s fault. Mr Kang, her Father’s associate, shows up and tells her to head home; he’s going to take care of all of this.
With the Director collapsed, we cut back in time and see those moments after Seo-Jin cut Yoon-Hee’s neck as she feigned being injured. It turns out this maniacal streak has been running within her for a long time.
Seo-Jin receives a call and hurries to the hospital, feigning grief as she sees her Mother cradling her dead Father in bed. Making it all about her, Seo-Jin collapses on the floor and passes out as everyone hurries around her. Ugh, Seo-Jin is really the worst.
After the funeral, Seo-Jin’s Father’s death is the talk of Hera Palace. Su-Ryeon realizes that Seo-Jin would have gained the most from his death and puts this together with the school surveillance system crashing.
Determined to get to the bottom of this, she tasks Logan with figuring out where the night watchman was that night. Dressed as Ho-Dong, Logan learns that the guard quit several days ago and even changed his phone number.
Back home, Yoon-Cheol hears the fragments of Seo-Jin’s conversation about the guard and wonders if his ex-wife may be involved in some way. However, he’s immediately interrupted by Seo-Jin showing up and telling him to pack his things and leave. Eun-Byeol hears this too and immediately gets involved, telling Seo-Jin to forgive Yoon-Cheol. That ship has sailed of course, eventually leading to quite the fallout.
Down in the main atrium near the fountain, Yoon-Hee and Yoon-Cheol sit together and discuss what’s happened between them. She admits to revealing everything to Seo-Jin’s father and this only gets him thinking more.
Seo-Jin heads into school and receives lavish praise and gifts from everyone there who congratulate the woman on becoming the next Director. As Yoon-Hee herself mentions earlier on, she needs to be careful. Well, at least in public.
In private, Doo-Ki rallies the teachers together to give Eun-Byeol all the school awards. Everyone is in on it of course, with Doo-Ki acting as the ringleader. When Ho-Dong arrives, they all immediately scramble back to their desks.
Chairman Joo complicates matters though when he meets Ho-Dong and requests he hand over test papers for Su-Kyeong. After giving a suitcase of money, this spineless teacher bows and thanks him for his hospitality.
Meanwhile, Logan meets with Joo and Yoon-Hee to discuss the upcoming investment. With pressure on Joo, the pair convince him to get involved and invest money into this project. With Joo taking the bait, Ho-Dong rings Su-Ryeon for a bit more information, namely any clues linked to Joo’s secret study and what may be hidden inside.
Back at school, Seo-Jin heads home, giving Doo-Ki the perfect excuse to take pictures of the test papers to send to Joo as promised. Given the big meeting Joo needs to attend, he tells an incredulous Seo-Jin that he’s not able to meet her that evening. In fact, Joo happens to be out at dinner with Yoon-Hee and Logan.
This is all an elaborate excuse to gain Joo’s fingerprint though, which they manage to swipe and use a forensic expert to print it onto a 3D finger.
While Logan finds his way into the secret study, Yoon-Hee stalls and feigns being drunk, cutting her hand on a smashed glass and smearing blood on Joo’s face. This brings back repressed memories for him though as he grabs her round the neck and begins choking her out.
Thankfully, Secretary Cha is on hand and he manages to thwart the threat before it’s too late. They both take him to the villa where he passes out on the bed. As he does, Seo-Jin shows up and immediately slaps Yoon-Hee in the face. Given her position at the company now, Yoon-Hee tells her to leave and has Secretary Cha take the crazed woman into the courtyard.
When Joo awakens, he questions why Yoon-Hee didn’t say anything about his condition. She calmly explains though that he had a bad childhood so didn’t see it as her place to say anything. Seo-Jin shows how bratty she is though, screaming at Joo afterwards and telling him to fire Yoon-Hee because she makes him uncomfortable. He of course refuses to do this.
Back in the secret room, Su-Ryeon sees Joo’s plans, which include taking over the land owned by her furniture company. Given this was left for her daughter, Hye-In, it explains why Joo was trying to get rid of her daughter.
Logan eventually breaks into Joo’s safe though where he finds numerous real estate documents, millions of dollars and a strange photo of Joo’s family, including his Mother whom she believed died giving birth to him.
Anyway, Joo returns home and a close encounter with Su-Ryeon sees her and Logan just about get away without being caught. Meanwhile, Ro-Na completely loses control and heads back home with dyed hair and a bad attitude. She snatches up one of Yoon-Hee’s beers and heads into her room.
Yoon-Hee meanwhile is told to visit the 47th floor rooftop but this is exactly where Seol-A fell. There, her memory comes back as she sees Chairman Joo choking out Seol-A while Yoon-Hee was watching. A smashed flowerpot sends Joo scrambling as Yoon-Hee grabs Seol-A and throws her over the edge, “As long as you die, Ro-Na can be accepted.”
Su-Ryeon shows up not long after and explains that she used her all this time to get her revenge. She also breaks the news that she’s Seol-A’s Mum as Yoon-Hee gasps.
The Episode Review
So it seems the truth has been revealed (see, I told you Chairman Joo was too obvious!) and with Yoon-Hee’s motivations revolving around Ro-Na, it all starts to make sense now… or is this just Yoon-Hee’s delirious thoughts? We’ve already established she was completely drunk that night and she may have seen something else.
I still hold onto the fact it’s one of the kids – perhaps Eun-Byeol given how completely crazy she is. It’s hard to tell but this is pure, well-made makjang from start to finish!
Crazy seems to be the operative word here. Chairman Joo clearly has some repressed memories from his childhood that are starting to come out while we all know what Seo-Jin is like. I really hope one of them gets their comeuppance at the end of this season but given we’ve got 2 more seasons of this, it seems unlikely.
That’s to say nothing of the numerous twists and turns along the way and really is a show you need to switch off to and enjoy the ride. There’s a lot of contrivances here, including Logan speaking English the whole time but understanding perfect Korean. It’s a little inconsistent but seems to do the trick for the time being.
Despite its flaws, Penthouse remains an engaging guilty pleasure and I can’t wait to see what the show throws at us next!