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Thursday, March 16, 2023

"Taxi Driver" Korean drama season one: Episode four 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: 13.5%

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 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. Jang also runs an organization called Blue Bird which helps victims of crimes.

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. For a while will keep these five names at the top, they were the villains from the first two episodes with the bottom four working as a team. But they've still had no official outcome as all are still trapped in the Baek's dungeon and there was a mention of them made during todays two 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.

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.

 Park is on the right, Choi in the middle and Cho on the left.

Guest Stars for the third and fourth episodes

Park Joon-Mok as Park Jung-Min.... High school junior who is a somewhat new transfer student at Sejung high school. Jung-Min lives with his mother who is deaf and runs a fish stall in Jaesong. Jung-Min has been bullied so badly by the below three students, it was turning into a case of live and death which is why he contacted Rainbow Taxi.

Choi Hyun-Wok as Park Seung-Tae.... The ringleader of the group that bullies Jung-Min, he comes from a rich family and has been getting away with murder! Not in the literal sense but wouldn't put it past Seung-Tae causing someone's death.

Lee Jae-Hak as Jang Hung-Sik..... One of Jung-Min's other bullies but mainly follows the orders of Seung-Tae.

Lee Min-Jae as Oh Hak-Soo.... Same as the above character.

Previous recaps

 That above screenshot shows the four major guest stars in the left. Jung-Min is the high school student being badly bullied, the other three are the bullies. But sure you read the above recap so know all of that but there's more going on than just that case which will also be discussed. Noticed that the next four episodes are of one case so not sure how I'll be recapping it. A good idea may be to view two shows, write the posts up without publishing them. Then view the next two, then write those recaps up and have back to back days with the four posts so you don't forget what took place but wouldn't be doing that for close to two weeks. Though this is fifteen minutes longer than the "Abunai Deka" drama have also been able to keep these recaps at four segments and that'll be the goal for the rest of this series. Always talk about them main events and storylines but do leave a few minor things out which are usually in the screenshots. 

 Before we get onto the main 'revenge case' the episode opened up with the above two screenshots. The woman is Ha-Na who is a prosecutor for the Northern Seoul District Office, with her is Wang who is Ha-Na's trusty assistant. Near the end of the third episode there was a file delivered to her office with all of the details of the sordid affair at the fish company, the entire story to that is in the first two recaps. The owner of Rainbow Taxi Jang had secretly sent Ha-Na the massive amount of evidence and she even interviewed the corrupt police chief Kim from the village where the company was located. Have to admit I really don't know why Jang would have sent her this evidence, the three main culprits are locked up in Baek's dungeon and what was Jang's secret motive for doing that? Sure we'll find out soon enough and one reason could be to divert Ha-Na from digging into the other case in the first two shows which was of a sexual predator named Cho. On to the current case which as mentioned has to deal with a seventeen year old boy named Jung-Min being bullied endlessly at his high school.

 The bullies are the above trio, on the left is Park while on the right is Oh. In the middle is their leader Seung-Tae and what a devilish young man he is. At the conclusion of the previous episode he had coerced a female student to blame Hwang for having scantly clad photos of her in his briefcase. Hwang is the secret identity of the drama's hero Do-Gi who is posing as the homeroom teacher for the above trio, until things cooled down Jung-Min wasn't attending school. That incident with the photos was exactly what Hwang(Do-Gi) was waiting for and this trio couldn't have picked a worse person to frame! The two mechanics at Rainbow Taxi, Choi and Park, had installed so many cameras around the school. Viewing all of the action from a van parked outside the school was the ace tech woman Eun-Go who saw what took place with the photos. Hwang also wore a mini ear piece where he can talk with Eun-Go, she told him what has taken place but not to worry as she'll take care of everything. That's Eun-Go in a few screenshots above, she's 25 in age but passed easily as a seventeen year old. She entered the school, took the photos from Hwang's briefcase and put them in the creep Seung-Tae's schoolbag! Then Eun-Go called up the school's dean with the info and before you knew it Hwang was quickly cleared of any wrong doing and it was Seung-Tae who was caught with the photos! We didn't see what took place next but think for now he and his two mates are allowed to attend school until a hearing can be held.

 At seventeen in age the above trio are already chain smokers, especially the leader Seung-Tae. Being underage makes it difficult to purchase tobacco but they often force some weak or elderly people to buy it for them. One day there was scraggly old man passing by pulling a cart, he opened up the contents which had to contain twenty cartons of smokes. Seung-Tae bought some and though I wasn't 100% positive think this old man may have ben the owner of Rainbow Taxi, Jang. But those weren't regular cigarettes that Seung-Tae bought but ones that were laced with marijuana though at the time the trio weren't aware of it. But the next day the old man was stopped by the police who were actually the pair of Rainbow Taxi mechanics(?), he pointed to the boys passing by and said they purchased smokes from him! The boys quickly fled though we viewers knew they weren't real policemen, they made it to a patch of woods right near their high school. There they proceeded to dig up the cigarettes they had stashed there but guess what... they were gone! That was courtesy of Hwang and as you can see above he was viewing the entire scene form the school's roof.

 But not just Hwang viewing the action, the scene was filmed as some cameras had been put in the woods as Jang's 'revenge squad' doesn't miss a trick! To humiliate Seung-Tae and his partners even more badly the next day Hwang played the video during class, it appears this lowlife bully Seung-Tae has met his match with Hwang. But things only got worse and remember that these bullies needed a taste of their own medicine. That evening Hwang paid a 'school visit' to Seung-Tae's ritzy house and was playing Go with his father! Hwang didn't say a word about the pot but in exchange for keeping his mouth shut Hwang wants the trio to pay him to the tune of $5,000! Which Seung-Tae agreed to but the situation is getting out of hand, it's time to bring this new homeroom teacher down and everything in the pair of recaps has taken place during a four day period. In that first recap we witnessed Seung-Tae going to a very seedy club and we were amazed it was owned by the mysterious woman Baek, more on her coming up. At the club Seung-Tae knew some older men who at times pose as his 'uncles' to get him out of trouble. Seung-Tae has never been in more trouble than he is now and has recruited about ten of these goons to come with him the next day to the school's roof to finally deliver payback to Hwang!

 In that top screenshot above is Jung-Min who we didn't see too often in this episode as he wouldn't attend school until the bullies were taken care of. Of course they were and in the bottom screenshot is Do-Gi(Hwang) giving Jung-Min the bill for the Rainbow Taxi's services, it was for $3,400 but was worth it in the end. Back to the rooftop scene and you can see the thugs Seung-Tae recruited to teach Hwang a lesson. However it would take many more goons than that to take Do-Gi down as he had been  an elite member of the Special Forces unit of Korea's military. Those ten gangsters were no match for Do-Gi who by now was out of his teacher's clothes. He put all ten down within a matter of minutes, you can see above what he did with Seung-Tae which was to push him off the school's roof! But not to his death as below the mechanics Choi and Park had set up an airbag, Seung-Tae fell into it and was quickly rushed away to an abandoned warehouse. Arriving a short time later was Do-Gi and guess what was in this building?

 At least a thousand pasties and Seung-Tae was ordered to eat every single one before he could leave!!!! Not that he had any choice for Seung-Tae's feet were in cement and he couldn't move an inch. Any pastries not eaten will be billed to the tune of a $100 each(!), Do-Gi said all the money will go to the victim Jung-Min and that would settle his bill with Rainbow Taxi. Don't know what happened with Seung-Tae after that but him and his two mates were expelled from school. Those two cohorts, Park and Oh, had even gone to the police to confess to what they did to Jung-Min and were the police searching for Seung-Tae? That they weren't as this was the first they heard of anything for as mentioned those two earlier policemen were the mechanics at the taxi company. Though Jang runs this 'revenge squad' and metes out some brutal punishments I still think he's a very decent man. He visited Jung-Min's deaf mother at her fish stall and said her son had won a very prestigious scholarship to attend college, no doubt Jang paid for it all and this second revenge story had a happy ending.

 But that wasn't the end of the episode as there was still ten minutes to go and three short scenes. The first had to deal with Baek, that's the older woman above who is expecting Jang to soon deliver many new prisoners and did mention the next story will be four episodes long. We also learned that she appears to run a Call Girl Service as she had brought that above trio of college students to a politician's hotel suite, wasn't the first time Baek has done that. We even saw Baek later climb into bed with this man and will he be part of a future minor storyline? So we did learn more about Baek but actually there's even more questions than ever. Right above is Eun-Go who is the whiz tech person at Rainbow Taxi. She was writing on an online diary, it was a note to her deceased sister. Mentioned that sister in the previous recap as this dead girl's mother had attempted to kill herself twice but failed both times so Ein-Go's past is one more thing that we'll soon be hearing more of.

 Final tidbit is that Jang brought out his ace driver and revenge specialist Do-Gi to a dinner. He was shocked at who was in attendance for it was Ha-Na along with her prosecutor boss Cho. Ha-Na is getting so close to finding out the truth about a pair of cases the Rainbow Taxi 'revenge squad' has accomplished/solved, why would Jang take such a gamble having dinner with her? Jang can be a bit devious and don't know his reasons yet but sure this dinner was all part of a plan. Everyone had way too much to drink save for Do-Gi who never touches liquor, Jang and Cho left together as they're old friends and were going to do more bar hopping. Do-Gi said her would give Ha-Na a lift home as she too was a bit tipsy but soon after leaving the restaurant Do-Gi saw some construction site lights and passed out!  He was quickly brought to a hospital by Ha-Na and the doctor was so confused about Do-Gi's body, why were there so many bullet wounds? Not sure of the answer but could it have been from his time in the military? Do-Gi passed out as the lights reminded him of the day his mother was brutally murdered, her dead body is above and that ended this episode. There's always that one main revenge case but there's also 3-4 minor stories going on at the same time, what an interesting show to date! Next recaps will be in about two weeks and explained at the top why that would be, many more screenshots to help you follow the action a bit better.

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