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Saturday, March 4, 2023

"Taxi Driver" Korean drama season one: Episode two recap


 Air Dates: April 9th until May 29, 2021 on SBS-TV, Saturday and Sundays at 10:00 pm
Director: Park Joon-Woo... Subs done by Sally G... This episode's rating: 10.4%

Main Cast: Bit of a large cast plus there's many guest stars whose roles are big but the episodes are an hour or longer. The setting is the Rainbow Taxi company which is a legit operation and is run by an older man named Jang. For now it seems 100% of the drivers are just your regular cabbies but there is one driver who goes beyond the call of duty and will be the first character you'll read about below. His name is Kim Do-Gi, usually in recaps use the last name for males and first names for females which I hope makes things easier. However will be referring to him as Do-Gi, there's a woman that I'll be using her last name who is Baek.

A second season began on February 17th of this year, hopefully can recap most of the episodes before that season ends and may also do posts for that also. Almost all of my drama recaps for the past year have been for shows with the episodes being between 25-45 minutes and have been doing a good job at keeping them brief yet also not leaving any details out. So these recaps will definitely be longer but so much takes place in this show and will already give this series a very high recommendation. As it says in this screenshot this drama is about revenge and we need more in that vein!

Lee Je-Hoon as Kim Do-Gi.... This is a man who can do it all, if I described everything we'd be here for days! Do-Gi is the most unbeatable fighter I've seen to date in a drama, he had once been an elite member of the Special Forces division of Korea's military. Four years ago his mother was slain by a crazed killer who later committed suicide in prison which meant Do-Gi couldn't avenge his mother's death. He soon met the man below who is Jang and the owner the Rainbow Taxi, he told Do-Gi if he wants revenge to join his company. Which is a legit taxi service though Do-Gi also specializes in helping others getting back at those cruel people who have made their lives a living hell! Could add more in but that's enough for now....

Kim Eui-Sung as Jang Sung-Chul..... Owner of Rainbow Taxi and that's him in the above screenshot. Jang's parents were murdered twenty years ago and since then has sworn to avenge the victims of brutal crimes or who have been mistreated so badly. There's five members at the taxi company who do work on helping others get revenge but after two shows unsure if that number just may be a bit higher.

Esom as Kang Ha-Na.... The exact name as one of my all time fave Korean actresses! She's a prosecutor for the Seoul Northern District and was hell bent on finding what happened to a goon named Cho who disappeared after being released early from prison. But Ha-Na's supervisor told her to lay off the case and has assigned her to work with Jang, besides owning the taxi company he also has an organization helping victims of crime. Since the second show Ha-Na has been a bit leery of how the company operates, are they mixed up in some illegal activities?

Pyo Ye-Jin as Ahn Go-Eun.... That's Ye-Jin below and I need to do some regular posts for her! She's an elite hacker and tech expert who works at Rainbow Taxi and is one of five people there who work on the unknown 'revenge squad'.

 Jang Hyuk-Jin as Choi Kyung-Goo.... The head mechanic at Rainbow Taxi, Choi and his assistant Park also work for the 'revenge squad'. Along with the above Go-Eun him and Park also work off site doing surveillance work and other duties.

Bae Yoo-Ram as Park Jin-Eon.... Bae and Park are a also comedy team and I've seen them paired up often in dramas.

Cha Ji-Yeon as Baek Sung-Mi.... A very mysterious middle aged lady who owns the Nakwon Company. When Jang has to stash one of the people who they've taken revenge on he brings them to Baek who charges some very high fees.

Yoo Seung-Mok as Cho Jin-Woo.... The Deputy Chief Prosecutor for the Seoul Northern District office. Cho is Ha-Na's supervisor and he's also good friends with Jang.

Lee Yoo-Joon as Wang Min-Ho.... Ha-Na's assistant at the prosecutor's office.

Guest Stars for the first two episodes
 Stories are for two episodes which means this list of characters will be in both of today's recaps.

Cho Hyun-Woo as Cho Do-Chul.... A sexual offender who was sentenced to life in prison but was released after only eight years to public outrage.  He was picked up at court by none other than our hero Do-Gi who brought this sicko to first Jang then to Baek's 'prison'. Ha-Na is on the case to find out what's happened to Cho with no success.... yet.

Jo In as Kang Maria.... 18 year old female who had been living with her two siblings at an orphanage. Maria only has the maturity level of a nine year old but is very competent with computers. Maria thought she would be doing office work at a fish factory but what took place was pure cruelty and was finally able to escape, she somehow hooked up with Do-Gi who is on her revenge case.

Tae Hang-Ho as Park Ju-Chan.... The main owner of the fish factory and one of the most despicable men I've ever seen in a drama who gets his due justice at the end.

Song Duk-Ho as Cho Jong-Geun.... Park's assistant and he appears to be a bit slow. Cho watches over the workers/slaves at the fish factory, when he first saw Maria he fell in love and began to have his way with her. 

Kim Do-Yeon as Choi Jing-Sook.... Maria's 'handler' who is also beyond cruel, she's recruited all of the workers for Park's factory.

Jo Dae-Hee as Kim Hyun-Wook.... Corrupt police chief in this small town the factory is located in and works as Park's security man.

 Very rarely do I pat myself on the back but will do so now. Thought that first recap was one of the best I've ever written, it went so smoothly and much quicker than I expected. Just skimmed through it and though a bit long it was such an easy read and can I do it for this post too? Will make every effort to do that, did to an extent and have noticed the recaps for dramas I really enjoy always turn out to be much better and interesting than so-so shows. Next up will the final pair of recaps for the second season of "Abunai Deka", then will take a mini break from that to concentrate more on this series. Sure you read the above post and really hope so as I won't be referring back to what took place too often, let's get to the action and of course just so much occurred.

 The last recap ended with a flashback scene from four years ago. It was when Jang had recruited Do-Gi to join his Rainbow Taxi company as a driver though of course the main task Jang wanted him to do was join him in attaining revenge for those who have been wronged. Do-Gi agreed even though there's no way to avenge the murder of his mother which took place a few weeks before that final scene. But have a strong feeling we'll be learning so much more about the history of the two, for instance what else has happened in the last four years and how did the other three in the 'revenge squad' get recruited? In that first episode were two stories, both important though one was much longer and detailed. Will start this off with the lesser story and by the end of this second episode it appears there's no true outcome yet. That story has to deal with the sexual predator Cho who had been released from prison after only serving eight years of a lifetime sentence. Will refer back to some things which have taken place but not often so that first recap needs to be read. 

 The drama's hero Do-Gi had been the taxi driver who took Cho from the courthouse, in a very deft move he was able to make his taxi disappear with the help of the Rainbow Taxi owner Jang. Currently Cho is locked in a small cell located in the cellar of a woman named Baek, that's her in the middle screenshot above. When Jang captures these lowlifes who have destroyed the lives of others Baek keeps them hidden away though for a hefty price. By the end of this show Cho was still locked up and what's going to become of him, he wasn't mentioned too often in this episode. However there is someone on the hunt for him, that's the prosecutor Ha-Na in the bottom two screenshots above. She's the one who prosecuted Cho and has been viewing the videos of Cho's release as so many cameras filmed the action. Ha-Na has finally deduced that the taxi Do-Gi drove into a tunnel wasn't the same one that came out the opposite side, there was no way to tell on the videos who was driving. Ha-Na is making headway on the case but has nothing concrete to go on so would think Cho's disappearance may continue on into the next show. Right at the end of this episode Ha-Na made her first appearance at the Rainbow Taxi company where she met Do-Gi, the two did not hit it off at all! Bit of a long beginning but for the most part that finishes off Cho's story for this recap.

 Now on to the second story which will take up close to the rest of this post. It was about the eighteen year old female Maria who is adept at computers but only has the maturity level of a third grader. She had been living in an orphanage with her two younger siblings, being eighteen meant Maria had to move out. She was conned into working and living at a fish factory which doubled as a brutal prison where others had also been duped into working there. The fish factory is owned by a man named Park who is such a despicable man and really brutalized Maria. Not so his assistant Cho who is a bit slow and fell for Maria at first sight. Cho had her doing other tasks around the heavily secured factory but before long began to abuse her sexually and Maria was powerless to stop this fiend. Maria's second attempt to escape from the clutches of these evil men was successful, and she eventually hook up with our hero.  Who is Do-Gi, along with Jang, Go-Eun, Park and Choi they are the five who will get revenge for others and all are now working to bring these creeps down.
 First off Do-Gi impersonated himself as a chain restaurant owner who visited the factory and wanted fifty barrels of Jeotgal from Park who is in the third and fourth screenshots above. Jeotgal is a Korean word meaning salted fish. Park at first was a bit leery about Do-Gi but when he opened his briefcase and pulled out some thick wads of Won bills Park was so eager to work with him. Maria's 'handler' that brought her to the factory and also all of the other workers was the woman above who is Jong-Sook. Along with the two men she is a very despicable person and for her efforts Park gives Jong-Sook 10% of the profits. She too is on the 'hit list' for what she did to Maria, besides conning the young woman to work at the fish factory Jong-Sook also took out ten life insurance policies on her! She's been doing that for years with the other workers, when they disappear Jong-Sook along with Park and Cho collect the premiums which have been quite immense. On her case is the Rainbow Taxi owner Jang who went to Jong-Sook's insurance firm where she works. Soon after meeting Jong-Sook Jang was able to capture her outside of the building with the help of the mechanic Choi. It appears she's been sent to Baek's underground prison but after this scene not much was revealed about her outcome.

 Though Maria's case is the prime focus of this show we didn't see her as often as we did in the first episode. That's her above and though Maria has the maturity level of a third grader she is quite skilled at computers and has been helping out the ace tech whiz Go-Eun at Rainbow Taxi. Go-Eun discovered that the creep Cho had been giving Maria birth control pills when he was having his way with her at the factory, this makes the 'revenge squad' even more determined to bring the lowlifes down. In that gold mask in the top screenshot above is Do-Gi who has his own ways on getting back at Cho. This goon was driving a truck back to the fish factory with the fifty barrels of fish Do-Gi had ordered. To Cho's utter disbelief this masked man jumped in front of the truck making it stop. Do-Gi then gave Cho a minor beating and took off in the truck meaning the owner Park couldn't fulfill the order. But the next day when Do-Gi showed up at the fish factory he said he could understand what took place but wants no more mishaps as he now wants twenty more barrels for a total of seventy!

 Part of that plan is to make Park keep spending his money on fish, now he has to order another fifty barrels to make up for the ones that were stolen. The fish factory is located in a small unnamed village outside of Seoul. The police chief's name is Kim who also works with the owner Park, this chief is so corrupt as he makes the stores and eateries in this village pay him 'protection money'! Kim was the person who brought Maria back to the factory when she first attempted to escape, Do-Gi knew that and Kim is next on the 'hit list'. That's Kim above who was telling Park he's located Maria and is on his way to grab her, it was all a ruse set up by Do-Gi. His taxi is like a James Bond vehicle as it has so many special features installed by the mechanics at Rainbow Taxi. The newest feature is above and that gadget was able to wedge itself onto Kim's rear bumper, a twist of the knob sent the police car flying through the air and now Kim was out of commission. Another feature is that the taxi can be stripped in a matter of second of it's decals and such which is how Do-Gi has never been identified. 

 Last segment and it's time to finally bring down the fish factory owner Park and his assistant Cho. The pair still had no clue they were being set up by Do-Gi, once again Cho was driving a delivery truck packed with barrels of fish and this time there were seventy. As you can see above Do-Gi was lying in wait again but this time Cho was more prepared. In the pack of the truck were about five goons who wanted to teach Do-Gi a lesson which may be impossible to do! Do-Gi may not be that big of a man but he could be the most skilled fighter in any drama I've seen. He took down that group of men quicker than you can snap a finger but during the melee his mask slipped off revealing Do-Gi's identity. Which didn't matter in the least as soon Do-Gi made short order of Cho, as a matter of fact he dragged him to a warehouse and used him as a backstop taking batting practice as you can see above. With Cho also out of commission it means three of the four who abused Maria so cruelly have been taken care of, least to an extent. Do-Gi saved the best worst for last who was the fish factory owner Park, that scuffle too is above. Was I glad to see him take a beating, Park can act like a toughie around people like Maria but when it comes to a man like Do-Gi Park was badly outclassed.

 It wasn't a long bout as Do-Gi ended up shoving Park into a barrel of rotten fish, then put it in a freezer! **** Do have to add in that Jang's team doesn't kill any goon for if they did the police may get involved. If you give a lowlife a beating or destroy their lives there's no way those people will rush to the authorities telling them the story of how they abused others so badly. So it was a satisfying ending for Maria but have a feeling she didn't know exactly what took place, she's now living happily in a group home with her younger sister and brother. Also a happy ending for the fish factory workers who have been freed and Jang, with Go-Eun's help, has managed to give those workers the remaining money that Park had left over. My final question(s) is what actually was the final outcome for Cho, Park, Kim and Jong-Sook, the four who abused Maria so cruelly? None were killed so are they now prisoners in Baek's dungeon(?), hopefully that will be revealed in the next show along with the situation with the sexual predator Cho. That wraps up this recap and did make it two paragraphs shorter than the first one, of course I can't explain every single detail but didn't leave anything major out and it does help to view the below screenshots. Have two more episodes of "Abunai Deka" to recap, after those are done can concentrate more on this series which I'm enjoying immensely.

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