Things get a little bit more personal as Young-woo suddenly finds herself involved with a case related to best friend, Dong Geu-ra-mi. Though no longer an attorney, she is still a friend and she unleashes her potential and maximizes her strengths to do what she loves and is great at: practice law.
Extraordinary Attorney Woo Episode 4: Case 4 – The Strife of the Three Brothers
The episode starts off with two older brothers driving to their youngest brother’s house to have a talk. The head of the village who was fixing the brother’s roof agrees to come back another time with the unexpected visit from the two men. The three brothers as well as the youngest brothers’s wife then all sit down inside the house to go over a gift contract for their late father’s rice paddy land. Although under the youngest brother’s name, the two older brothers wish to divide up the compensation: the eldest will get 50%, second-born will get 30%, and the youngest gets the remaining 20%. The eldest, Dong-il, cites the Inheritance Law to support his argument.
The youngest brother, Dong-sam, and his wife glance over the contract, but Dong-il and the second-born, Dong-i, rush him to just sign the document. There’s nothing to wait on; it’s not as if he’s going to get an attorney or the head of the village to look at it, right? Plus, what does Dong-sam know? He’s just a farmer living in the countryside. With that, Dong-sam is pressured into signing the document without full knowledge of what he just signed away.
Back at the Hanbada office, Young-woo’s absence is greatly felt. Soo-yeon, Min-woo, and Jun-ho all notice how she still hasn’t been coming into the office. Although empty, Jun-ho still holds out the hope that Young-woo will someday return. He places the gift that he bought for her on her desk. As for Attorney Jung, he glances once again at Young-woo’s resignation letter that has been sitting on his desk.
Meanwhile, Young-woo enjoys her time hanging out with her dad at their small, cute gimbap restaurant. Just then, best friend Dong Geu-ra-mi comes storming into the restaurant to have an urgent conversation with best friend Young-woo about the memorandum that her father signed with her uncles. The land compensation amounts to 10 billion won, but her father will have to pay the taxes all by himself as stated in the contract. Although he’ll be getting 2 billion won from the land compensation, the taxes outweigh the money so he’ll only be left in debt.
Dad Dong-sam and his family are looked down upon in the family as countryside farmers, but Dong Geu-ra-mi is here to prove otherwise. She knows an attorney who can help them (AKA her bestie, Young-woo). But Young-woo shares that she’s not any attorney anymore. Even then, she’ll still lend her support and Dad agrees that they can all take a field trip to Ganghwa-do where Dad Dong-sam resides to take a look at the contract.
It’s been 7 years since Young-woo and Dad has last been in Ganghwa-do. They moved there as a result of the school bullying that Young-woo had been experiencing and Dad thought that maybe moving to a smaller school in the countryside would be better. But as Young-woo would experience, moving schools didn’t change much. She was still being bullied and classmates would even pull horrible antics with her, including a game they called “I’m Sorry” where they would embarrass and humiliate her in public and then “apologize” afterwards. Things got so bad Young-woo would hide in the teacher’s office during recess and eat lunch with the security guard in their office during lunch time. But of course, there were still classes which was a space that Young-woo couldn’t escape from. That is where she first learned about Dong Geu-ra-mi.
On this particular day, Young-woo was passed a note by a classmate to ask their teacher where she got her eyes done which Young-woo ended up doing. Embarrassed and ridiculed, the teacher slapped Young-woo in the face in front of the entire classroom and stormed out of the room. This compelled Dong Geu-ra-mi to seek revenge for Young-woo as a result. She hit the classmate who passed the note to Young-woo in the back of her head and gave her a taste of her own medicine. Chaos ensued in the classroom and all the classmates perceived Dong Geu-ra-mi as if she was a psycho. That’s what everyone called her and saw her as.
From skipping classes to sing karaoke or singing karaoke at school herself, Dong Geu-ra-mi always did whatever she wanted and where ever she wanted. And because of her strong personality, Young-woo somewhat found comfort in that. It was the day when Young-woo waited for Dong Geu-ra-mi at the bus stop to enter school together that their friendship became official. Young-woo proposed that they become friends: she felt safe when she was with Dong Geu-ra-mi and well.. Dong Geu-ra-mi could use a friend. Although baffled at first, it’s obvious that Dong Geu-ra-mi liked the idea. And so on that day, the two became friends and the rest is history.
In the present, our trio eventually arrive at Dad Dong-sam’s place to over the memorandum. After browsing through the contract, Young-woo acknowledges that it is indeed disadvantageous for Dad Dong-sam as it states that he’ll be responsible for paying all the taxes when receiving the compensation. But wait, what about the Inheritance Law? That’s what Dong-il used to support his argument about this memorandum.
With the revision in the Inheritance Law, all children are to receive equal amounts of inheritance so Dong-il ultimately lied to Dad Dong-sam. Smart Young-woo not only recites the Inheritance Law, but also adds that it might not be so bad that Dong-il lied. This could fall under deception or as Dad simply rephrases it: fraud. This means that Dad Dong-sam can take back his expression of will that was made due to fraud or compulsion and can cancel the memorandum. There is some hope to this situation after all! All thanks to Young-woo.
Although hesitant at first, Dad Dong-sam eventually gives in and agrees to file a complaint against his brothers. With that, Young-woo can be their attorney, right? Right? But Young-woo stands by what she said earlier. She’s no longer an attorney, but she can refer them to someone who she knows: Attorney Jung.
So Dong Geu-ra-mi makes a visit to the Hanbada office to visit Attorney Jung. She’s advised by Young-woo on the phone to be careful when entering the revolving doors and to knock on Attorney Jung’s door before entering his office. Haha. I love the advice and tips. When Attorney Jung isn’t in his office, Dong Geu-ra-mi heads out to the litigation team area to find Jun-ho. As Young-woo would describe him, he’s popular, tall, and good-looking.
So Dong Geu-ra-mi skims the room and finds who she believes is Jun-ho. She walks up to him, but while Jun-ho is there, it’s Min-woo who she mistakens for Jun-ho. HAHAHA. Min-woo eventually steps away and Dong Geu-ra-mi checks in with Jun-ho on Attorney Jung’s whereabouts as well as her reasoning for the visit. Upon hearing Young-woo’s name, Jun-ho’s eyes lit up and it’s obvious he’s happy to hear about her. But Dong Geu-ra-mi is there to visit Attorney Jung after all and he shows up nearby a few seconds afterwards.
Young-woo helps out with Dad’s gimbap restaurant as a part-timer, but she receives a sudden phone call from Dong Geu-ra-mi with status updates. After speaking with Attorney Jung, he won’t take on the case. But wait. What about the fraud and compulsion? What about Dong-il’s deception? However, there’s more to the case that Young-woo isn’t aware about since she still is a rookie attorney. Dong Geu-ra-mi eventually gives up as the messenger and has Young-woo talk to Attorney Jung herself on the phone while she and Jun-ho listen in on the conversation (eeeek, Jun-ho is also there in the office with them). There’s ultimately no evidence for the deception and compulsion so it’s unlikely Dad Dong-sam will win the case. Attorney Jung also advocates for Young-woo to come in-person to Hanbada herself if she has anything additional to say. With that, he hangs up and Young-woo rushes over to her former workplace.
Dong Geu-ra-mi joins the Hanbada team for lunch. She seems to have taken a liking to Min-woo and she seats herself next to him at the table. Hahaha. Attorney Jung and Soo-yeon are there and Jun-ho also joins in on the fun. Young-woo shows up shortly afterwards and gets straight to the point. They have to take on the case or else Dong Geu-ra-mi’s father will be in an extreme amount of debt due to the memorandum. So who exactly will take on the case? It can’t be Soo-yeon or Min-woo. If Young-woo is really that desperate, she’ll take on the case herself.
Attorney Jung also doesn’t buy into Young-woo’s argument that she’s no longer an attorney. They’ve been working as a team for a few months, how could she just quit and resign without providing an official reason? It’s also for that reason that he hasn’t processed her resignation letter yet. With that being said, Young-woo is still technically employed by Hanbada so she must return to the office. No more unexplained absences without notice for her. While Min-woo seems discontent with the choice, Jun-ho and Soo-yeon smile at the thought of Young-woo’s return.
After reuniting with the Hanbada team, Young-woo waits down in the lobby for Dong Geu-ra-mi. Jun-ho enters the lobby only to find Young-woo waiting near the revolving doors by herself and excitedly greets her (omg he’s so happy seeing her. MARY TRY NOT TO CRY CHALLENGE #1). He first brings up how he misses eating with her; it hasn’t been the same since she’s left (MARY TRY NOT TO CRY CHALLENGE #2). But wait, what about the gift that he got her and put on her desk? Since Young-woo wasn’t aware that it was from Jun-ho, she unfortunately threw it away (MARY TRY NOT TO CRY CHALLENGE #3). Their conversation is unfortunately cut short when Dong Geu-ra-mi appears. She and Young-woo head out together, but of course, Dong Geu-ra-mi is quick-witted and she pays close attention to Jun-ho’s heartbroken and dejected face expression. She can sense that there’s something going on between Jun-ho and Young-woo.
It’s the first day of trial for Dad Dong-sam’s court case. Young-woo goes up to question Dong-il who’s on the witness stand and asks him to confirm the statements that he told Dad Dong-sam when they signed the document. Unlike what they expected, Dong-il claims that he does not recall giving the statement about the Inheritance Law to Dad Dong-sam. When Dong-i is looped in to give his side of the story, he too admits something similar. He has no recollection of Dong-il saying such a thing. Dong Geu-ra-mi is outraged in the courtroom at her uncles’ lies and Dad Dong-sam is discouraged and disappointed. Since there isn’t firm evidence to support Dad Dong-sam’s case, they cannot move forward with the trial.
After the trial concludes, Dad Dong-sam’s family, Attorney Jung, and Young-woo find both brothers waiting outside the courtroom for them. They accuse Dad Dong-sam of being greedy and hungry for money and even uses their parent’s name to continue the blame and guilt trip. Attorney Jung emphasizes once again the importance of having firm evidence: were there any threatening phone calls or texts? Or maybe witnesses? Upon hearing about witnesses, there is someone that pops up in Dong Geu-ra-mi’s mom’s mind. The head of the village, Jin-hyuk. He was there on that day fixing the roof, but left once the two brothers arrived. But did he really leave though? Maybe he overheard the land compensation conversation.
So Dong Geu-ra-mi’s family as well as Young-woo and Jun-ho pay a visit to Jin-hyuk’s house. Did he hear anything? Did he maybe stay behind to eavesdrop on the conversation? At first, it seems like all hope is lost. What kind of person do they take Jin-hyeok for? But a few seconds afterwards, he does mention something about tying his shoes after the brothers arrived and how.. well.. maybe he did hear some things while doing so (“the issue isn’t your rooftop, you should look into soundproofing.” Hahaha. I’m dead!). The atmosphere brightens up as it seems like Jin-hyeok did hear some parts of the conversation. Dad Dong-sam thanks Jin-hyeok for tying his shoes on that day. LOL.
After the visit, Young-woo, Jun-ho, and Dong Geu-ra-mi prepare to head back to town. But Dong Geu-ra-mi has a change in heart. She decides that she’ll spend the night with her parents leaving Jun-ho and Young-woo to head back together. Hehe. Before bidding farewell, Dong Geu-ra-mi shares with Jun-ho a popular date spot in Ganghwa-do known for its beautiful sunsets. Jun-ho doesn’t seem to quite understand and comprehend what Dong Geu-ra-mi is getting at, but Dong Geu-ra-mi is all for it. She wishes him well and sends the two
lovers off (HAHAHA. We are all Dong Geu-ra-mi in this moment).
While driving back to town, Jun-ho attempts to strike up a conversation with Young-woo. It’s his first time in Ganghwa-do to which Young-woo just simply nods. What about her? Does she have any plans for the rest of the day? Since Young-woo’s schedule for the day is free, Jun-ho puts out the idea of seeing the sunset. Young-woo glances at Jun-ho in shock and surprise, but she seems to like the idea and together the two make a pit stop to catch the sunset.
The scenery is beautiful as the sun is setting, but not as beautiful as Young-woo and Jun-ho. With Young-woo trailing ahead and Jun-ho following her footsteps just a few feet behind her, our rookie attorney gushes over whales once again. It is her most favorite thing in the world after all and Jun-ho is her friend who listens to her talks about whales. Has Young-woo ever seen a whale before in person at an aquarium then? But as we will learn, Young-woo isn’t a big fan of aquariums as she compares them to jails for the whales that causes extreme mental stress. She then moves on to talking about dolphins – another favorite aquatic mammal of hers. (I also just want to put a disclaimer here now that I’ll be taking many screen shots of this scene so you might see many photos of it in this recap. I can’t help myself. Hahaha).
After listening to Young-woo talk about whales, Jun-ho takes the opportunity to also say something. He brings up Young-woo’s resignation and why she no longer is an attorney. Why did she quit? Was it because of their last case? Was it because of his college friend’s comment about her? Young-woo is honest and straightforward with her response. She quit because she was well aware that everyone only saw her as Young-woo with autism, not as Attorney Young-woo. That lead Young-woo to believe that she wasn’t helpful and that not having her on your side was better than having her. It’s better if she’s not a part of it at all.
But Jun-ho begs to differ. He feels otherwise. He disagrees. Unlike what Young-woo thinks, there is someone who wants Young-woo on their side. It’s Jun-ho. He confesses that he wants to be on the same side as Young-woo. He also wants Young-woo to be on his side (MARY TRY NOT TO CRY CHALLENGE #4). Young-woo is speechless at Jun-ho’s comment. She’s unsure as to how to react or what to say and she panics internally. Jun-ho continues to glance at her after his genuine confession and even slightly smiles at her. Even if Young-woo has nothing to say in that moment, it feels as though Jun-ho was able to get something off his chest. Although his words might mean a lot to Young-woo, it’s obvious that they mean just as much to him as well.
Back at Hanbada, Min-woo has a conversation with Attorney Jung about Young-woo’s absence and status with the law firm. It makes him quite uncomfortable at how she hasn’t been penalized for her actions or at how her letter of resignation hasn’t been processed yet. Min-woo understands that Young-woo could receive such special treatment because she has autism, but Attorney Jung quickly shuts Min-woo’s harmful and harsh accusations down. Young-woo is not receiving special treatment and there are many things that Min-woo himself could learn from Young-woo who’s smart and creative with the way that she tackles cases (OOOOO MIN-WOO SIT BACK DOWN).
It’s another day of the court trial and head of the village, Jin-hyuk, is brought in as a witness to testify this time. Young-woo proceeds with the same process as last time and questions Jin-hyeok about his actions on the day of the memorandum signing. He acknowledges that he was outside the house tying his shoes, but when asked if he heard anything from the conversation, he denies it. He didn’t hear anything that was being discussed inside of the house. It’s obvious that the two brothers did some dirty work behind the scenes with Jin-hyuk (AKA paid him off to not talk) so Team Hanbada is back to square one once again. Darn!
Later on that night, Young-woo and Dong Geu-ra-mi debrief on the court trial. They didn’t expect so many lies to be said in the court room and Dong Geu-ra-mi feels discouraged. It’s not as if they can just make up evidence. But speaking of making up evidence, Young-woo reaches another epiphany and a vision of a dolphin jumping in and out of the water appears in her mind. They can make up evidence!
So at a small memorial service held at Dong-il’s place for their father, Dong Geu-ra-mi and her parents attend the service and voice their disappointment. Dong Geu-ra-mi is vocal and outspoken about the whole court trial and the inaccurate Inheritance Law statement and all the lies that were told in the courtroom. It’s obvious Dong-il and Dong-i scammed Dad Dong-sam and left him with nothing but debt. The rage inside of Uncle Dong-il eventually explodes and he hits Dong Geu-ra-mi in front of everyone. Dad Dong-sam defends his daughter and he gets into a fight with Uncle Dong-i himself. Eventually, a fight ensues between the family members, but Dong Geu-ra-mi’s mom steps aside to report the situation to the police in a phone call. They have their evidence.
So during the next court hearing, Young-woo presents evidence to support a new claim: a gift can be legally cancelled. It’s obvious Dong Geu-ra-mi and Dad Dong-sam are injured as they were assaulted by both brothers and Dong Geu-ra-mi’s mom’s phone call to the police is evidence of that. Given the situation, Dad Dong-sam can cancel the gift that is the land compensation as the recipients (the two brothers) committed a crime against the giver (Dad Dong-sam) and the giver’s immediate family (Dong Geu-ra-mi). In addition to their original claim, they would like to add the cancellation of the gift contract to the case.
But wait, the legal team for the two brothers suggests that maybe the assault was executed on purpose so that Dad Dong-sam could cancel the gift. So Young-woo turns it back on him and asks him the same exact question she had been facing throughout the case: does he have firm evidence to support his claim? (HAHAH OOOO, GO YOUNG-WOO!). With that, the judge approves the change in the purpose of the claim aaaand the attorney for the two brothers acknowledges their defeat. Dad Dong-sam and his family silently rejoice while Attorney Jung congratulates Young-woo on her good work. Min-woo also watches from afar in the back and is quite impressed with the outcome.
After the trial concludes, Young-woo goes on another field trip with Jun-ho. This time, they head to the main conference room that Young-woo herself has yet to be in as there’s something that Jun-ho wishes to show her. So when she enters the large conference room, she heads straight to the windows for the beautiful outside scenery. But there’s another view that’s even bigger and more beautiful standing right behind Young-woo. Along with Jun-ho, Young-woo turns around and stares at the huge sperm whale photo plastered on the wall. That’s what Jun-ho wanted to show her.
Young-woo is rendered speechless once again and she tears up at the sight of the whale portrait. Her eyes sparkle, but she’s also in tears at how beautiful the image is. Jun-ho peeks at her face expression and he refrains from speaking upon seeing her reaction. He just smiles quietly to himself and they enjoy this silent moment together. Overcome with happiness and delight, Young-woo imagines a huge sperm whale floating outside the window by their building. She feels comforted by this photo.
Dad Dong-sam wraps things up with his brothers. Upon meeting again after the court trial, Uncle Dong-il and Dong-i get on their knees to beg for forgiveness. They were greedy and they thought they could get away with scamming Dad Dong-sam. However, they’re not that well off themselves in fact and they knew that what they did was wrong. They apologize. Dad Dong-sam and Dong Geu-ra-mi are taken aback by their sincere behavior and apology.
Dad Dong-sam invites them to sit at the table to discuss further. Dad Dong-sam isn’t like either of his brothers and he knows that the land doesn’t belong to just him. He’ll be the bigger person and he’ll divide the compensation equally among the three. Young-woo chimes in by handing them the contract and sharing the amount of money they’ll each receive after taxes are paid. While the three brothers agree and sign off on the document, Dong Geu-ra-mi expresses her appreciation and gratitude to her best friend. She shows Young-woo the new tattoo she’s gotten on her arm of the clause that saved her family and she gives Young-woo a big warm hug. Best friends forever.
Young-woo stops by Attorney Jung to check in with him on her employment status at Hanbada. Did he happen to process her resignation letter yet? When Attorney Jung states that he hasn’t, Young-woo asks if she can continue to work at Hanbada. Attorney Jung is internally relieved at Young-woo’s decision, but he is clear on his expectations of her. She can return to work as long as she shows up to work everyday since she’s already used up many of her leaves of absences. Young-woo agrees and she returns to her office. First things first: she places her nameplate back to where it belongs and then rejoices inside the room. This is her second home.
We return to the night that CEO Han unexpectedly visited Dad at his gimbap restaurant. They sit down to catch up and CEO Han brings up Young-woo in their conversation. She’s aware that Young-woo got rejected when she applied to her law firm and wants to reverse that. CEO Han encourages that Young-woo apply again. CEO Han was busy when the first round of applications happened, but it won’t be that way again the next time. Dad informs CEO Han about Young-woo’s autism, but CEO Han is aware. She’s also aware of Young-woo’s school accomplishments and bar exam score. All the other law firms made a mistake by not hiring her. Hanbada won’t. Dad’s eyes tear up upon hearing CEO Han’s commitment to Young-woo. The day has finally come.
Dad eventually sends CEO Han off after they finish chatting. While in the car, CEO Han glances at an article about Young-woo being the first attorney with autism in Korea. She comments how similar Young-woo resembles her mom.
This episode was a much more light-hearted watch compared to episode 3 which I was sort of relieved about. I’m not sure how prepared I would have been for another episode 3 after how heavy and realistic and raw it was and the multiple messages that it conveyed throughout its one-hour run. Along with how episode 4 balanced out episode 3’s more serious and firm tone, I like that we got some context and history behind Young-woo and Dong Geu-ra-mi’s friendship. This was something that I wanted as mentioned in my last recap and I’m glad we got that in this episode.
I like that this episode’s case focused on a character who had a personal connection to Young-woo compared to the cases that we’ve seen in the previous episodes. I also like that it came about during a time when Young-woo didn’t perceive herself as an attorney and was feeling down about her career trajectory. It was exactly the case that she needed to realize her true passion and love in life which is law and being an attorney. It took a situation that involved tackling a case related to best friend Dong Geu-ra-mi for her to gain more confidence in herself and her career. Through this case, Young-woo learned two meaningful lessons: it’s one thing to be good as an attorney, but it’s also another to love your job and to be passionate about the work that you do. Young-woo is both of those things.
I voiced in my last recap how I wished the drama gave us more outside of the court cases and courtroom. Maybe more dad and Young-woo moments, more Young-woo with Jun-ho, just more Young-woo and not Attorney Young-woo. It’s as if the drama heard me overnight because this episode gave us just that. Of course, it helps that the case in this episode tied back to Dong Geu-ra-mi, but I also just enjoyed watching high school Dong Geu-ra-mi and Young-woo and the background behind their cool friendship. We got to see what happened in the beginning and then also how the two became official friends. And then we also got to witness how their friendship has become a blessing many years later. Young-woo still finds comfort and protection in being with Dong Geu-ra-mi and Dong Geu-ra-mi can rely on Young-woo to be a reliable friend. Nothing much has changed between the two and officially becoming friends on that snowy day was one of the best decisions that they’ve made in their lives.
I was absolutely heartbroken and taken aback when Young-woo submitted her resignation even though I completely understood why. She was insecure and she felt as if she was a burden to the clients and her team. She didn’t want to cause trouble or feel this guilt if someone lost a case or lost their life (as seen in episode 1). She also experienced extreme discrimination which affected her mentally and emotionally. It was a lot for her to endure and handle and I don’t blame her at all for resigning. Although hurtful and heartbreaking, she was proactive and made a decision that she felt was best for herself. But as we saw in this episode, this decision had a much heavier impact on everyone who knew Young-woo.
Hanbada needed her. Attorney Jung needed her. Jun-ho needed her. Young-woo went from celebrating her brand-new nameplate to removing it in such a short time span and no one was prepared for that — Young-woo herself included. Young-woo is valuable to the team and the law firm; Attorney Jung knew that for himself when he hesitated on processing Young-woo’s resignation letter. But the other part of it too was that he knew just how passionate Young-woo was about law and he didn’t want that to go to waste. He was well aware of just how much potential Young-woo had and he wanted her to do what she loved.
Therefore, this episode was about Young-woo’s process into realizing what she was passionate about and where her second home is. Her second home is Hanbada. She’s already succeeded there quite a few times and she feels at peace when she’s there. When she’s in the court room as an attorney doing her job. When she’s out and about on visits and investigating a case. This is what provides joy in her life and she was excited to return to the law firm after her success with Dong Geu-ra-mi’s case. Young-woo was a little lost in life and that happens. It happened to no fault of her own. But sometimes life works in mysterious ways and she grew from this experience. Now that Young-woo is back, maybe she’ll be back for good. She’ll still face challenges and discrimination as that is a part of her life as someone with autism, but she also knows that she’ll be able to bounce back just like how she did during this brief phase in her life.
After watching episodes 3 and 4, there was this sense of appreciation for Attorney Jung who has grown tremendously since his first interaction with Young-woo in episode 1. The drama has set him up to be a mentor to Young-woo since he’s been an attorney in the industry for much longer than she has, but I like that he also doesn’t overdo it with his mentoring. In fact, he’s subtle about it. There are times where he’s more vocal and outspoken in his support for Young-woo as we saw in the last episode, but there are also moments like in this one where he’s less obvious. He hesitated in processing Young-woo’s resignation letter and came up with several reasons to justify his decision, but I think we can all agree that it was because he still wanted Young-woo to work at Hanbada. In addition to how talented and good she is at her job, he’s well aware of her passion and how much she has grown while at the law firm.
Then there was also the decision in not supporting Young-woo with Dong Geu-ra-mi’s case and instead assigning her the responsibility to tackle it all by herself. It could have been easy for Attorney Jung to take on the case himself or assign it to another lawyer or to help Young-woo behind-the-scenes. Instead, he was stern, he sat back, and he let Young-woo take ownership of the case. Attorney Jung believed in Young-woo and knew that she would overcome the challenges and self-esteem issues that she was facing. He knew that Young-woo wasn’t feeling the most confident, but he also knew that she had it in her to bounce back and not only be successful as an attorney but also grow as a person. This all came true and the decision to have Young-woo take full ownership of the case proved to be an energetic boost that propelled Young-woo to return to the law firm.
Attorney Jung’s appreciation towards Young-woo may not be the most explicit, but we see that he fully supports her and is on her side. Whether it’s with CEO Han or Min-woo, he’s made it clear that Young-woo is here to stay. Young-woo may have felt like she was a burden or as if no one was on her side, but Attorney Jung thought otherwise. It’s also nice that his mentorship of Young-woo isn’t so loud and outspoken. Sometimes, mentorship and leadership isn’t always visible or it also doesn’t always have to be so easily seen and explicit. ‘Extraordinary Attorney Woo’ has always been about the details and little things and it’s the little things that Attorney Jung does for Young-woo that clearly proves just how much he cares about his team member and also just how valuable he is as a mentor and leader. He is a fitting mentor for her.
The same thing can be said about Jun-ho who is easily one of the easier characters to root for in this drama. Even with our small supporting cast, Jun-ho is just on a completely different level. He’s becoming a lot more bolder, daring, and vocal with his feelings towards Young-woo now that he’s gotten to know her better over the months. At the beginning of their relationship, he was more curious about her and was more interested in becoming acquainted with her. But over the months, they got closer the more they interacted and now I think it’s sort of developed into a relationship that’s past the “I-want-to-get-to-know-you” phase.
Sure, Jun-ho is still learning about Young-woo as we saw at the sunset scene in this episode, but he’s also developing feelings for her that transcends past just being a friend. Jun-ho’s careful with his approach and he’s taking his time and not being pushy with it, but he’s dropping hints that he appreciates Young-woo as both a co-worker and a person. He likes working with her on cases and spending time with her at work, but he also just misses her. He misses her presence. He misses eating lunch with her and listening to her talk about whales; he misses seeing her around the office. There’s been this emptiness roaming around the office since she’s been gone and it hasn’t been the same for him.
To reiterate my earlier point about subtleness and the drama being about the little things, I like that Jun-ho is also so subtle about his feelings towards Young-woo. And maybe I might be wrong in that I’m completely misinterpreting his feelings for Young-woo, but I sense that he likes her. And if I am leaning in the right direction in this theory, then I like that he didn’t full-on confess to her during the sunset scene. I like that he didn’t straight up say “I like you” to further completely throw her off and in this loophole. Instead, Jun-ho’s confession was so much more simpler and subtle. He tied it directly back to Young-woo’s comment about not being on anyone’s side and used her comment to express how he felt about her. He wants her on his side. He wants to be on the same side as her. By stating this, he’s also saying that having her on his side is not a loss. By using her words and repeating himself, Jun-ho is making it clear that Young-woo is not a burden. He communicated his feelings to her in a way where she could understand and that’s what made that confession so special. No fancy words, no big expressions, no grand declarations. No, it was just a simple “I want to be on your side and I want you to be on my side.” That was Jun-ho’s way of confessing and Young-woo understood exactly what he meant by that. He spoke her language.
To add onto the sunset confession, I think the final piece to the puzzle that made me a lot more confident in my theory that Jun-ho is starting to develop romantic feelings for Young-woo was the whale portrait scene. Sure, maybe you could interpret the sunset confession as a friend and co-worker looking out for their friend. Or maybe you can see his gift for Young-woo as a way to apologize for the comments that his college friend made. But there’s really no other way to spin the whale portrait scene. Jun-ho dedicated some time aside in the work day to bring Young-woo to the large conference room even though they had no meeting in there. Then he showed her the large whale photo knowing fully well just how much she loves whales. It’s such a grand gesture, but it’s also another indirect and subtle way to confess to Young-woo. He didn’t say anything, he didn’t mutter any words, he just merely glanced at Young-woo’s face expression to see her reaction. Then when he saw tears in her eyes, he smiled silently to himself and appreciated this moment they were sharing together.
Combine the gift and sunset confession as well as the whale photo show together and you start to get this sense of where Jun-ho is coming from. He took his time, he didn’t force anything, he didn’t push himself onto Young-woo, he didn’t rush anything. He waited until it was good timing to tell and show. Jun-ho used both words and actions to express his love and appreciation for Young-woo. What started off as just lunch time dates and whale talks has now transformed to beautiful field trips and whale portraits. There’s a story behind each chapter in Young-woo and Jun-ho’s relationship.
Through 4 episodes so far, ‘Extraordinary Attorney Woo’ has turned out to be such a, well, extraordinary watch. It’s light-hearted and optimistic, but the drama also doesn’t shy away in educating and shedding light on the challenges that people with autism face on a daily basis. There are certain scenes where you’re angry and upset and frustrated, but there are also moments where you’re inspired and your heart is full. You learn so much while watching this drama and you also appreciate the characters as they are. The people in each court case may come and go, but Young-woo, whales, and Team Hanbada are here to stay forever.
Extra photos from the episode~