Following the attack from Cha-Young and Vincenzo, episode 5 of Vincenzo begins with Babel group on the backfoot. Joon-Woo immediately confronts his puppet Chairman, Han-Seo. He chokes him out, telling him to call an emergency meeting and chalk the warehouse incident up to electrical overheating. He wants to keep the arson attack a secret.
Cha-Young and Vincenzo celebrate their small victory up on the rooftop together. While they drink, Cha-Young realizes that he can’t practice law and wonders what they’ll do to get the upper-hand. Cha-Young deduces that they can use her expertise and knowledge in Babel’s operation. As she points across the street, she highlights an advertisement for Babel Chemicals.
One of the workers there, U-Yeong, is suffering from nosebleeds and he heads over to greet his friend, Monk Chaeshin. The two go way back, as it turns out, and U-Yeong teases about his religion. These meetings occur monthly but after their friendly meeting, a loud chant from Monk Jeokha breaks their conversation up.
Cha-Young unwittingly continues to feed Joon-Woo information, as she rings him while working out. It’s here he realizes that she was responsible for the fire at the warehouse.On the back of this, he tries to concoct a plan to get his revenge against Cha-Young and Vincenzo.
Vincenzo is smart though and has already figured out that Han-Seo isn’t the real boss. Of course, at this point it’s a catch-up game for our protagonists given we already know the truth. Anyway, not long after he’s made a partner at Wusang Law Firm given Cha-Young’s absence.
Following her scare last episode, Choi Myung-Hee decides to look into Vincenzo, distrusting of his perfectly clean record. She immediately shows up at his office and meets Vincenzo and Cha-Young. Given how cunning Myung-Hee is, Cha-Young hilariously covers for her new partner, telling Myung-Hee that Vincenzo has swollen glands. He even puts on a squeaky voice for her when they finish drinking tea. For now, Myung-Hee is kept off the scent.
When she leaves empty-handed, Cha-Young begins her presentation regarding Babel chemicals. It turns out they’re pretty shady, as one would expect from Babel group, and their chemicals are banned in the US.
Cha-Young does her best to go through the slides without despairing as it turns out Nam Joo-Sung has added some real pizzazz to the different slides. The big tell from this though comes from a picture of Director Gil Jong-Moon, who happens to be the boss of Haemun Medical Center. He’s well known for fabricating diagnosis and is as crooked as they come. Of course, he’s just one cog in this corrupt machine, but Cha-Young is convinced she can work with Vincenzo to take them down.
First up is lawyer Hyeon-u, whom the pair visit and intimidate. They tell him to stand down and warn the man against trying any funny business in the meantime. Next, they visit the victims, learning that the lawyer originally in charge of this case died because he coerced witnesses to perjure in exchange for money. Cha-Young does her best to rally the victims’ families together but it’s Vincenzo who ultimately wins them over.
Meanwhile, Han-Seo comes under fire at Babel HQ when one of the chemical workers passes out on the floor, sputtering blood everywhere. It’s a pretty horrific scene, and as we soon find out, it’s actually U-Yeong. He’s approached by his supervisor who warns him, telling the man to stay quiet about the chemicals.
Back at Geumga Plaza, Vincenzo runs into Park Seok-Do and his goons. They’re not happy about finding a nail in their food and immediately confront Chef Toto about it. When Vincenzo shows, he tells them to pay up and leave the restaurant. Just to prove how serious he is, he knocks out each of the guards and asks again.
Unfortunately, Chef Toto’s plates are smashed in the ensuing skirmish, prompting Vincenzo to apologize and hand over a cheque to cover the expenses. This only makes the other residents more fond of him, as the females comment how Vincenzo isn’t even trying to hide his hotness anymore. With Vincenzo winning the finger flick bet against Cha-Young he begins to warm up. Cha-Young braces herself… as he intentionally misses her face.
Just then, Jung-Woon shows up at the office. He’s immediately flamboyant and gloats about his new position as partner to avoid suspicion from Vincenzo and Cha-Young. They’re not exactly in the congratulatory mood, and it’s only made worse when Joon-Woo mentions spice. Vincenzo slams his hands on the table as the pair head out together, determined to out-spice one another.
Suddenly we shift tone and pace to the hospital as Monk Chaeshin races in to see U-Yeong. He’s not in a good way but reassures his friend that he’s going to be okay. When Gil Jong-Moon shows up, Chaeshin claims to be U-Yeong’s guardian. He breaks the news that his friend has leukemia.
This is almost certainly a result of Babel Chemicals but the Director writes that off, claiming Babel follow their protocols correctly. As we already know, this doctor is part of the corruption.
When Cha-Young and Vincenzo find out, they head off on their own without Joon-Woo, who immediately suspects something is up. Despite this being an industrial problem, the pair talk with the residents about the mess they’re in and how Babel are trying to settle this quietly. After all, if this was pushed a little further then Babel would certainly topple like a house of cards.
With his training complete, Monk Jeokha suddenly stands up and agrees to help all the residents fight back. Well, this fight comes in the form of setting up a big scene in Hyeon-U’s office, calling him evil and chanting. It turns out the families have signed a form to usurp the lawyer from his position. This all came to be thanks to Cha-Young’s smarts, managing to record incriminating audio evidence to rally the residents against him.
At the same time, Vincenzo broke into Hyeon-U’s personal safe, finding cash and gold inside. As Hyeon-U realizes his personal stash is in jeopardy, he hurries into his office and finds the entire safe completely cleared out. The only thing left is a donation certificate to confirm all of his funds have been given up.
With Hyeon-U’s resignation in the bag, Cha-Young dances back into her old the law firm and announces that she’s taking over the victims’ case now. Unfortunately Vincenzo’s voice is instantly recognizable to Myung-Hee who realizes that he may well be the same man who threatened her at the laundrette. Vincenzo outright admits as much, telling her that freedom comes at a cost before walking away.
Han Seung-Hyeok is slow to catch on though, especially when he quizzes Myung-Hee over whether Vincenzo is the culprit behind everything that’s been going wrong with Babel.
Myung-Hee decides to personally take on all the Babel cases herself from now on to try and thwart this threat. Joon-Woo continues to play both sides but Cha-Young refuses to indulge him, not letting on to his plan.
On the back of this he sighs, deciding not to go light on Cha-Young anymore. At the same time, Vincenzo decides to give her some advice, warning Cha-Young that this is a dangerous game and that she needs to play like a villain. And that villainy starts with Hyeon-U dumped on an island alone just off the main coast. Despite shouting at the top of his lungs, there’s no way anyone can hear him.
Next step is the court case itself. Vincenzo decides to sabotage the trial and to do so during the day itself. After discussing the case, the conversation turns to Vincenzo himself and whether he’ll stay in Korea after they’ve settled everything. He chuckles thoughtfully, telling her he has nothing in this country to stay for.
Afterwards, Cha-Young and Vincenzo head in to see Chef Toto who’s cooked up more food. Shockingly, Vincenzo gives it a thumbs up as Toto and the undercover An embrace each other in delight.
Things are certainly looking up for those at Geumga Plaza, as Cha-Young and Vincenzo prepare for their day in court. With their clothes pressed and ironed, along with a beautiful, flashy ride courtesy of Vincenzo, the lawyers all show up at the court house ready to fight.
Just before they head in, Vincenzo tells the reporters in Italian: “Only evil can punish evil.” The Geumga Plaza residents play their part too, putting on a dance routine with signs reading “Babel Chemicals repent.” On their way in, Cha-Young shoots a cheeky wink at the lawyers.
The Episode Review
After last week’s strong episode that found the right balance between comedy and drama, Vincenzo grows in confidence by delivering another funny episode that shoots much closer to Mr Queen’s balance between serious and comedic.
There are still some jarring cuts, like U-Yeong suffering in hospital after a particularly goofy and slapstick segment, but on the whole this tonal balance is much better here.
The flower pot Myung-Hee dropped off at the office is almost certainly a listening device and given Vincenzo’s expertise in all things mafia-related, I’d imagine he’s figured that out too. Agent An has been kept to the shadows for most of this episode though, instead focusing more on the Babel Chemicals plot.
Joon-Woo’s goofiness is far more deliberate here and his moments of silliness make sense in the context of this show. In fact all the humorous elements are really well worked this time around, with Toto finally delivering a good dish for Vincenzo.
Getting the residents involved in this fight is definitely a smart move from the writers and it allows for more purpose beyond window dressing and calling Vincenzo hot.
Speaking of hot, there’a a lot of chatter about that scene with a shirtless Joon-Woo and I’d imagine he’a going to have a hard time being disliked from the female audience after that!
There’s some great chemistry between the leads though and that really helps carry this drama. Yes it’s silly, yes it doesn’t always make a lot of logical sense, but it is a decent comedic drama nonetheless. Whether the show can grow into a memorable K-drama hit remains to be seen though, especially with another 15 episodes to go.