The Penthouse – K-Drama Episode 5 Recap & Review

The Witch-Hunt

Episode 5 of The Penthouse begins with Chairman Joo and Seo-Jin continuing their scandalous affair as Su-Ryeon collapses on the floor when she spies them together. The sound brings the pair out to check but Su-Ryeon hurries away before they can spot her.

As she makes it to the elevator down, the doors shut just before Joo catches a glimpse of her. As she slumps down to the ground, she promises to punish them for this.

Believing their problems are over, Joo breathes a sigh of relief while Seo-Jin heads home and fingers the ring she hit Seol-A with on the evening of her death. Yoon-Cheol is suspicious of his wife’s late night antics too, and asks whether she wants to drink with him. When he mentions Joo, Seo-Jin immediately becomes defensive and tells him not to mention that evening.

While Yoon-Hee continues to suffer from nightmares relating to that fateful night, Su-Ryeon pretends everything is okay too, holding back her anger as Joo mentions Seol-A’s death being written off as a suicide.

Flashing back to that night, it turns out Yoon-Cheol had blood all over his hands. Ma-Ri noticed as she came in to the bathroom and saw him vigorously scrubbing. However, he laughed nervously and brushed it off as red wine.

Meanwhile, our bratty kids all head out together to play golf. On the way though, Seok-Kyung falls in the icy cold water. Her brother heads in to help her but despite seeing Seol-A’s ghostly apparition in the water, she blames the help and eventually decides they should all leave and head home.

Eun-Byeol is not herself either. As thunder and lightning crackles overhead, she covers her ears and says, “We’ll be punished for what we did to her.” Is this referring to the past incident with the champagne or Seol-A’s murder? Anyway, on the way back their golf cart crashes and the kids call out in vain for help.

Meanwhile, Su-Ryeon reads Seol-A’s diary and relives moments where her adoptive parents took Seol-A in; the start of her Anna Lee alias. Her investigation continues on at Seol-A’s apartment but she’s interrupted and forced to hide when Yoon-Cheol and Kyu-Jin head back there to try and find the pocket watch.

When they shine the light on where Su-Ryeon is hiding, they run out the room screaming believing she’s a ghost. On the back of this, Su-Ryeon heads outside and finds the pocket watch and also Sugar, Seol-A’s pet dog.

Back at Cheol Ah, all of our Hera Palace parents gather together and discuss Seol-A’s death. While Seo-Jin talks, Su-Ryeon shoots daggers at her the entire time. Yoon-Hee is the only one who speaks up for Seol-A, mentioning the multiple part time jobs she was doing and how difficult it must have been for her.

Ma-Ri immediately becomes suspicious and mentions how Yoon-Hee has gained the most from her death, subtly hinting that she’s the one who murdered her. Seo-Jin follows this up too, eventually ending with her finding out Kyu-Jin has agreed to settle and drop the issues.

Back at Hera Palace, Su-Ryeon makes her move and places an ominous note down on the fountain to confirm Seol-A was murdered. With CCTV footage pointing away, Joo suspects that it’s someone from inside the Palace. (hang on, why haven’t they checked the CCTV footage from the hallway where Seol-A supposedly jumped?!)

Eun-Byeol faints; the stress just too much for her to bear. When she wakes up, she tells Seo-Jin that she heard everything. She knows about the test scores and was actually the one who cut Seol-A’s binds and set her free. She heard Seo-Jin pushing her over and screaming at her to die, which caused the girl to lose consciousness.

Eun-Byeol then decided to let her go in exchange for the girl dropping out of school. Despite agreeing, Seol-A waited for her to cut the binds before kicking her away and hurrying off.  Only, she lied and hurries away.

Eun-Byeol chased her down the stairs, where Seol-A slipped and rolled numerous times, bumping into an antique that knocked her on the head.

The other kids have no knowledge of this incident, prompting a rather wide-eyed and incredulous Seo-Jin to tell her to forget everything and drop it.

As we cut back in time and see, Seol-A made her way into Seo-Jin’s computer that night and managed to find the changed test results. The USB drive we’ve seen before holds the original results.

Seo-Jin breathes a sigh of relief, believing it’s all over given the body has been cremated.

Meanwhile, Su-Ryeon visits Yoon-Hee and together they look over Seol-A’s file. It turns out she was deported for committing a crime but the details surrounding that are hazy, to say the least. Su-Ryeon remains determined to find out the truth but gets nowhere, despite gaining the interest of Congressman Jo.

Ro-Na begins school where she faces mixed reactions from many of the kids. While some are happy, others are less so. Seok-Kyung surprisingly offers her hand in friendship, until everyone is interrupted by breaking news leaking out.

The bullying audio files have been leaked online but despite the social media page being taken down quickly, the file has been shared too many times to put the genie back in the bottle now.

Seo-Jin remains convinced that this is Yoon-Hee’s fault, especially given how she was begging for Ro-Na to enter the school constantly. Seo-Jin pushes this narrative further, especially given Yoon-Hee’s insistence that Ro-Na take Seol-A’s place in school. The Hera Palace residents all decide to change their target and focus on her. Su-Ryeon however, tellingly remains quiet.

Congressman Jo makes his move later that day, confronting Su-Ryeon and essentially blackmailing her over Seol-A. She screws up his business card in her hand though and walks away.

With the target set, the emergency meeting begins with Yoon-Hee in the firing line. A letter is read, twisting everything to make it seem like Yoon-Hee murdered Seol-A.

It’s all one big show, with exaggerated mannerisms and both Seo-Jin and Kyu-Jin doing their best to rile up the mob. To make matters worse, the letter is even uploaded on social media for all the kids to hear.

The meeting is a complete sham of course, with everything Yoon-Hee says completely dismissed. Even worse, they bring in a witness who happens to be Seol-A’s boss from the restaurant she worked at. He vouches for the mob, reinforcing the idea that Yoon-Hee is not of sane mind.

With all the parents in agreement, they contemplate whether to phone the police. In a cruel twist of fate, via a flashback we actually learn that Yoon-Hee saved Seol-A from being abused by this man and walked away together.

Unfortunately things get even worse for her. Given Yoon-Hee blacked out from the night of Seol-A’s murder, everyone decides to pin the blame on her and get Ro-Na thrown out of school at the same time.

The only person who doesn’t raise their hand in agreement is Su-Ryeon. Just before they unanimously agree, Yoon-Cheol suddenly speaks up and says that he knows where she was. Yoon-Hee was with him at Hera Palace.

And this is what jogs Yoon-Hee’s memory. As we cut back in time, we see Yoon-Cheol helping her up from the ground and tending to her cut hand.

Thanks to Yoon-Cheol, Seo-Jin’s plans go up in flames. This causes a rift to grow between the two, prompting Seo-Jin to slap him in the face. Even worse, she finds out about the 100,000 dollars and smashes a vase on the floor for good measure. She promises to handle this going forward and storms out the room.

Meanwhile, news of Congressman Jo’s affair leaks on the news, prompting him to immediately phone Yoon-Hee and accuse her of the one to do it.

She seems completely dumbfounded though and even more so when he demands she pay back the money he gave her. If not, then her daughter’s life will be made a living hell.

She scrambles over to his house but finds the Congressman dead on the ground. As Yoon-Hee screams, the episode comes to a close.


The Episode Review

So, the plot thickens! It appears Yoon-Hee is not the one who killed Seol-A and that also puts Yoon-Cheol out of the equation too given he has an alibi. The blood on his hand seen by Ma-Ri is actually Yoon-Hee’s so that seems to conclude that angle.

There’s still something fishy about the kids though, especially Seok-Kyung and Seok-Hoon and their sudden changed attitudes. Are they living with a guilty conscience?

That’s to say nothing of the adults either and someone is definitely responsible for Seol-A’s death. I’d imagine Yoon-Hee and Su-Ryeon will eventually team up together to try and crack this case, toppling the hierarchy of Hera Palace along with it. Quite when or how though remains to be seen.

So far this series has been a wild rollercoaster ride of emotion and it doesn’t look like letting up any time soon!

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Click Here To Read Our Full Season Review For The Penthouse Season 1!

  • Episode Rating
3.5

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