Why Her?: Episodes 1-two (Initial Impressions)
But a different legal drama has dropped in dramaland, but this 1 focuses on a strong female lawyer who has clawed her way to the best of a prestigious law firm. Her cutthroat method hasn’t earned her a lot of buddies, so when an incident tarnishes her polished reputation, a lot of individuals are content to see her demoted to an adjunct law professor though she repairs her public image.
EPISODES 1-two Initial IMPRESSIONS
I’ve watched my fair share of legal dramas not too long ago, and even although I really feel a bit burned out on the genre, I decided to watch this 1 for 1 purpose, and 1 purpose only: Hwang In-yub. Ever given that he rocketed into fame following his screen-stealing part as the second lead in Accurate Beauty, he has been on my radar as a person to watch — and crush on. Whilst he might be the major man in this drama, there’s nary a sign of In-yub till the final fifteen minutes of Episode 1.
As an alternative, the story 1st requires its time introducing our major lady OH SOO-JAE (Seo Hyun-jin). She’s cutthroat, but regardless of becoming the highest-earning lawyer at the prestigious TK Law Firm, she has far more enemies than allies. A lot (properly, most) of the animosity stems from great ol’ fashioned sexism — simply because girls with ambition who do not smile on command are “bitches.” She’s up for a promotion as managing companion of the law firm, and as a group of (all) males weigh the candidates’ qualifications, Soo-jae’s gender is observed as a adverse. It would be far also progressive of them to have a female managing companion.
Soo-jae also “came from nothing” and was merely a higher college graduate — a person who passed the Korean bar exam devoid of attending law college. (Note: this practice was eliminated in 2017, and now all future South Korean lawyers ought to attend law college.) And positive sufficient, in a flashback to her early days at TK Law Firm, we see a meeker version of Soo-jae handing out papers at a meeting and then becoming told to leave the conference space simply because she wasn’t certified to sit at the major boy table.
Soo-jae’s most significant competitor for the managing companion position is MIN YOUNG-BAE (Kim Sun-hyuk). His ineptitude is palpable, but his Y-chromosome tends to make him 99.999% far more most likely to get the position. And however, that .001% worries him, so he tries to bribe Soo-jae’s correct-hand lady, associate lawyer SONG MI-RIM (Lee Joo-woo), into placing in a great word for him when she’s named in to give her opinion on Soo-jae’s qualifications for the position. Soo-jae, even so, plays dirtier and eliminates Young-bae as a contender totally.
1 of their firm’s most significant customers is Chairman HAN SUNG-BEOM (Lee Kyung-young playing a different corrupt wealthy guy). His corporation, Hansu Group, is promoting off its subsidiary Hansu Bio Chemical, which is run by Sung-beom’s nephew HAN GI-TAK (Jeon Jae-hong). Soo-jae and Young-bae have been placed in charge of handling Hansu Bio’s acquisition, but Young-bae took bribes from two of the 3 prospective purchasers and attempted to sway Gi-tak away from promoting Hansu Bio to SP Partners, regardless of them becoming the strongest purchaser.
Soo-jae has their boss CHOI TAE-KOOK (Heo Jun-ho) on the telephone when she exposes Young-bae’s backdoor dealings, and he’s promptly dropped from the acquisition case. But she does not totally safe the managing director position for herself till she has her group swoop in and raid Gi-tak’s workplace for the files that he’s dodgily avoided handing more than — a positive sign that he and Sung-beom are up to some thing illegal. Now that she’s in possession of these documents, Tae-kook has no other solution but to market her and attempt to retain her on a quick leash.
Soo-jae’s subsequent client is actor-turned-assemblyman AHN KANG-WON (Lee Tae-sung), who has been accused of raping PARK SO-YOUNG (Hong Ji-yoon), a bar hostess. Soo-jae meets with So-young and her lawyer, and at 1st So-young seems to be a doable spurned gold-digging ex-lover.
Not only does her “cheap attitude” look atypical for a rape victim, but she’s also wearing a pair of footwear that match the precise pair that Kang-won gave to Soo-jae when he was pursuing her. This suggests there could have been — at least at some point — a reciprocated romance in between the assemblyman and the bar hostess, who claims they by no means met prior to the evening of the incident.
It is been properly established that Soo-jae fights dirty in order to win on behalf of her customers, but this distinct exchange in between Soo-jae and So-young was uncomfortable to watch. So-young’s lawyer is useless, and unable to counter-attack Soo-jae’s potential to discredit So-young’s version of events. Soo-jae even low-crucial blackmails So-young — threatening to inform her younger sister about her profession — in order to get So-young to back down. The longer the exchange goes on, the far more apparent it is that So-young is a victim, but — as Soo-jae reminds Mi-rim later — So-young is not their client.
Later that evening, So-young falls from the law firm’s rooftop — a scene that jump-scared 5 years off my life. The police rule her death a suicide, but the public’s opinion is fueled by misinformation and rumors stemming from Soo-jae and So-young’s public dispute in the law firm’s hallway. The media reports that Soo-jae is accountable for So-young’s suicide, and the adverse publicity issues the firm’s other lawyers, who ask Tae-kook to delay her promotion.
At 1st, Tae-kook appears mainly unswayed by their opinions, but he does not take kindly to Soo-jae interrupting the meeting and asserting that she is the backbone of TK Law Firm. In the end, it is her hubris that prompts Tae-kook to send her on a forced “vacation” and remind her that he is the boss.
She’s demoted (no managing partnership) and sent to perform at Seojung University Law College, exactly where she can rebuild her image. In the meantime, Tae-kook appoints his personal son, CHOI JOO-WAN (Ji Seung-hyun), as the subsequent managing companion.
On Soo-jae’s 1st day as an instructor, she leaves her students waiting for practically a complete hour prior to displaying up to class. She writes, “I will by no means send my client to jail” on the board, and then promptly walks out of the classroom — which is unnecessarily dramatic in actual life but fantastic for tv.
GONG CHAN (Hwang In-yub), 1 of the students, follows her outdoors, and when she walks previous him, he’s relieved that she does not recognize him. But is he referring to their current random encounter, exactly where she slapped him out of misdirected anger, or some thing else?
A series of flashbacks to a case early in Soo-jae’s profession — like waaaaay early, when she was nevertheless meek — suggests that she and Chan have a shared history. On the other hand, the client that Soo-jae defended against rape and murder charges was named KIM DONG-GOO (Lee Yoo-jin), not Gong Chan…
Chan’s interest in Soo-jae causes him to be 1 of only two students who did not transfer out of her class. Whilst Soo-jae worries the course will be canceled, the other remaining student, CHOI YOON-SANG (Bae In-hyuk) — Tae-kook’s youngest son who received tutoring from Soo-jae — cryptically assures Chan that Soo-jae is not the variety to enable the class to be canceled. Certain sufficient, she sends out a mass text announcing that the quantity 1 student in her class will acquire an internship at TK Law Firm and tuition revenue, which sends absolutely everyone rushing back to her classroom.
Though she lost the position as a managing companion, Soo-jae refuses to let Tae-kook quietly reduce ties with her. So later, at the Seojung University Law College Evening exactly where Tae-kook is a guest speaker, she utilizes the files she acquired (and hid) from the raid of Gi-tak’s offices to leverage a deal and retain the Hansu Bio case. The contents of these files ought to be seriously juicy.
Her accomplishment, even so, is tainted when a former chief prosecutor and present professor at Seojung University SEO JOON-MYUNG (Kim Young-pil) sexually harasses her. Chan shows up to be her white knight, but Chan, who has a robust need to seek out justice for all, is baffled that she’s not inclined to demand an apology from Joon-myung. As an alternative, she apologizes to Chan when she recognizes him as the man she slapped in misdirected rage following Tae-kook sent her on “vacation.”
Joon-myung cannot retain his hands to himself, and the subsequent day NA SE-RYUN (Sohn Ji-hyun), 1 of Soo-jae’s students, publicizes that Joon-myung sexually harassed her at the following-celebration. Sadly, her only witness recants his statement, and the scenario becomes a classic case of he-mentioned-she-mentioned, with absolutely everyone assuming the upstanding professor is telling the truth. Poor naive Se-ryun, they all believe, she ought to have misunderstood the scenario and is generating a major deal out of absolutely nothing.
To make matters worse, all the professors — even the female ones — want Se-ryun to drop out so they can keep away from a scandal. Soo-jae remarks that the college is dirtier and far more corrupt than TK Law Firm, but her opinion does not translate to sympathy when Se-ryun comes to her for aid. As an alternative, she advises Se-ryun to retain her head down and concentrate on acquiring her objective.
This is the second time Soo-jae has advised a victim of sexual harassment to just ignore the atrocities inflicted upon her in favor of utilizing her anger as fuel for her pursuit of a “dream,” which tends to make me wonder: what is Soo-jae’s dream? And is her present coldness when faced with victimized girls the outcome of her personal trauma that she’s utilised to fuel her personal individual agenda? Provided that she turned down each Sung-beom and Assemblyman LEE IN-SOO’s (Jo Young-jin) present of her personal law practice in exchange for the files she’s holding hostage, it tends to make me wonder if her personal dream — and doable motivation — has some thing distinct to do with Tae-kook and/or his law firm.
Chan overhears her exchange with Se-ryun and lets slip that he’s disappointed that she has “changed,” but he dodges her curiosity by pointing out that her inactivity is only going to lead to far more victims. She has far more energy than Se-ryun, and Soo-jae should really be utilizing her anger to aid defend her student. Soo-jae assumes Chan is passionately defending Se-ryun simply because he has a crush on Se-ryun, so she advises him to discover his personal proof.
…And so he does, with a tiny aid from the rest of Group eight, which is composed of Chan, Yoon-sang, and the other students with the lowest test scores in the class. They band collectively and obtain more proof, such as incriminating CCTV footage, but when they present it at Se-ryun’s disciplinary hearing, the professors — and Joon-myung’s wife — dismiss it as inadmissible simply because it was obtained illegally.
But then Soo-jae shows up with her personal flash drive. She advises that all the individuals not personally involved with the case should really leave the space — which we know is her code for “I’m about to drop a bomb” — but Joon-myung’s wife insists the student hearing stay public.
With a shrug and a “I warned you,” Soo-jae plays the CCTV footage of Joon-myung sexually harassing her. She assures them that, as the victim, she was capable to get the footage legally.
Even when he’s confronted with the proof, Joon-myung does not think he’s accomplished something incorrect (classic “she was asking for it” mentality). His wife is equally absurd, picking to direct her anger at Soo-jae, the victim.
She accuses Soo-jae of enacting revenge against her husband simply because he bested her when she was a public defender. Provided her poor efficiency in that distinct case, individuals have been shocked TK Law Firm hired her, and Joon-myung’s wife sneers that absolutely everyone assumed Soo-jae slept with Tae-kook to get the job. Soo-jae remains unaffected by the accusations and whips out a set of blackmail pictures. Appears like she was cheating on Joon-myung. Man, they are really the pair.
Chan joins Soo-jae on the elevator, exactly where he explains that he didn’t defend Se-ryun simply because he likes her. As an alternative, he confesses Soo-jae is the 1 he likes, and he boldly grabs her hand. Provided all of the lack of consent that has occurred this episode, it is a gutsy move that I do not discover specifically squee-worthy, but Soo-jae seems somewhat curious, specially when he after once more hints at their shared previous and says that he kept his guarantee.
By means of far more flashbacks we understand that Joon-myung was the prosecutor in Dong-goo’s case, and when Soo-jae lost the trial, Dong-goo was sentenced to ten years in prison. Following the sentencing, Soo-jae held his hand and produced him guarantee to develop into a person strong.
Soon after a grueling year in prison, the actual killer was caught, and Dong-goo was released. In spite of his established innocence, his step-mother nevertheless blamed him for his step-sister’s death. So with no family members to return to, Dong-goo and two of his cellmates, GU JO-GAB (Jo Dal-hwan) and SO HYUNG-CHIL (Lee Kyu-sung), became a discovered family members and constructed their fish marketplace restaurant from the ground up.
Most importantly, Dong-goo changed his name to Gong Chan (there’s no mention of plastic surgery, so I guess we’re chalking the new face up to puberty), and started studying for law college. When asked in the course of his application interview why he aspired to be a lawyer, he mentioned he “wanted to discover a person.”
Effectively, it appears like he discovered her, but I’m not positive how I really feel about this romance subplot. Even when you take away the teacher-student partnership, Soo-jae feels… unattainable. She’s a ballbuster, and we’ve observed that she’s capable of utilizing and disposing of males infinitely far more strong than Chan. I’m not saying I will not at some point commence rooting for a romance in between these two (I like each characters separately), but for now the specialist and emotional gap in between them is also wide for me to commence shipping them as a couple.
As an alternative of the romance, I really feel compelled to continue this drama in order to discover out far more about Soo-jae’s backstory. She’s such an exciting and morally ambiguous character. As a lady, I applaud her strength when faced with rampant sexism, but she also has an agenda — a individual vendetta, probably? — that causes her to act in approaches that even she finds regrettable.
Her previous is a mystery, and I actually want this drama to show us her evolution from a naive and incompetent public defense lawyer to the strong lady she is now. Dear drama gods, please do not drop the ball on this character.
- Premiere Watch: Physician Lawyer, Why Her?, Cleaning Up
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- SBS’s Why Her? with Seo Hyun-jin, Hwang In-yub confirms premiere date