Cafe Minamdang season 1, episode 14 recap – a thrilling ending

August 9, 2022
Nathan Sartain 0
K-Drama, Netflix, Streaming Service, Weekly TV


An episode that really picks up after the mid-point, culminating in a thrilling ending

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An episode that really picks up after the mid-point, culminating in a thrilling ending

This recap of the Netflix K-Drama series Cafe Minamdang season 1, episode 14 contains spoilers.

Read the recap of the previous episode

Cafe Minamdang season 1, episode 14 recap

Shaken when Han-joon conducts a shamanistic ritual that exposes his guilt over what happened to Eun-hye, Tae-su claims that he is only carrying out this final act to end everything, “so you and I can all be free together.” However, the killer remains frozen when the shaman replies that punishing the person who killed the young woman is the only way to freedom, seemingly allowing for the situation to be capitalised on. Unfortunately, this is not the case, as Su-cheol ham-fistedly intervenes with a punch, knocking Tae-su out of his trance enough to start a confrontation only stunted by a mixture of luck, and Jae-hui’s skill. Still, on a positive note, the man dubbed Gopuri is arrested, while Dong-gi is saved (but also taken in by the police) to the relief of an emotional Jin-sang.

Irate at the idea of the Jakdu-dong project going off the rails now two important figures have been arrested, Seung-won is unconvinced that Dong-gi will “play dumb” during any investigation. Warning that he is holding Auntie Im to her assurances over taking care of the situation, and that if he had this way she would also be harmed, there’s a clear tension amongst the cartel. The next scene shows that the villainous shaman is attempting to make inroads towards scaring the Chairman, as she reminds him that it will be him that loses the most money should the project go bust. Yet Dong-gi is initially unphased until his ledger on Im is brought up, causing a deeper threat over potential death should the very thing that Seung-won’s company succession relies on be compromised by his confessions.

At the police station, the suspicious relationship between the developer and construction company is discussed. Needing to know who sold the land Seung-won owns to The Shovel of Sinmyeong so they can be questioned, more work is suddenly put on the team when they watch the Mayor brag about the Jakdu-dong development’s importance to the city’s growth. In the background, a sinister-looking Auntie Im explains that during a trying period like this, “you smile in front of the camera so those moronic investors rest easy.” Swearing that everything is going to plan, the other investors in attendance all seem content by how things are playing out even with Dong-gi’s arrest.

After Hye-jun dramatically intervenes to stop Su-cheol from confessing that he is dating her, we move forward to the interrogation of Tae-su. There, the serial killer pleads guilty to all of the murders, including Eun-hye’s, unable to let the mayor take the fall for the death of the young girl despite a fairly incriminating recording. Stating that he killed her because she threatened to call the police upon waking up from an overdose, burnt her body to destroy evidence, and framed Yeong-seop because of an unpaid favour when the corpse was discovered in the sewer, the detectives don’t seem convinced by the story. Do-won notes that such a clean admittance of wrongdoing could be down to deep-rooted guilt towards the victim, but everyone still remains fairly doubtful regardless.

When Eun-hye is compared to Tae-su’s mother, that’s when things change. Snapping to insist that the two people are different, Gopuri states that one ran away out of fear, while the other sinned. “I’ve only punished the sinners,” he adds, before being questioned on who it was that tells the murderer who the sinners are. However, this goes nowhere, as when the idea of Auntie Im manipulating Tae-su is brought up, in addition to the importance of the name of the controlling influence being revealed, it causes a chilling caution towards Jae-hui that she could end up dead like her brother should she continue this line of enquiry.

Shocked that she has had her tragic real identity exposed in front of her colleagues, as well as from the revelation that her brother was killed because he was righteous, Jae-hui angrily confronts Tae-su. Luckily, Du-jin is on hand with a cooler head, using the criminal’s mother in an attempt to break the suspect down. Nonetheless, progress is not made, and Tae-su, though fairly shaken, stands firm in his confession that he is the culprit. Later on, Do-won comforts a determined Jae-hui, who is ready to control her emotions for the sake of finishing off the investigation. Here, the prosecutor also confesses his feelings for the detective when finding out that she will be visiting Han-joon, admitting his jealousy in hearing his friend talk about the shaman. Somewhat awkwardly, a rejection is afforded, but Do-won does put on a brave face, stating that the next time the two meet, he will maintain proper boundaries.

Following on from scenes showing Han-joon and Jae-hui vowing to Jae-jeong that they will get to the bottom of the Gopuri case (there’s also a moment alluding to the former profiler’s eventual confession to the detective), we see the two meet at a Gangwon-do campsite thanks to the help of Hye-jun. Together, the two reminisce about Jae-jeong, sweetly pointing to their own destiny in meeting each other. Then, they talk about the ongoing case together, surmising that they need to make Tae-su doubt Auntie Im if they want a true confession.

Once Jae-hui and Han-joon have enjoyed what appears to be a date together, potentially signalling the start of the pairing’s normal relationship at the request of the detective, they talk frankly about their feelings once more, finishing the segment with an emotional kiss. Yet the tranquillity is soon interrupted, with the duo needing to return to Minamdang because of Jin-sang and Min-gyeong’s call. Meanwhile, Su-cheol tries to escape being caught with Hye-jun, needing the assistance of Na-dan to ensure that they can follow through on their goal of maintaining secrecy.

Next, Jin-sang informs the group about the Jakdu-dong projects, including the rumours that the famous real estate fraudsters the Land Hunter Team has joined up with the Shovel of Sinmyeong. Wishing to appeal to the media in the hopes of increasing sales so the cartel have something to work with financially even if the project is a dud, Do-won acknowledges that Seung-won must be in a rush to complete his immoral deeds. Unfortunately, all this means that evidence is unlikely to be found that can stop the project now that everything has been pushed up, but Han-joon does have a plan to strike during the ceremony to arrest the group, using the content from Tae-su’s laptop.

The ending

With the approval of the police Chief, and the evidence acquired as if it’s an anonymous tip, the police head out to the ground-breaking ceremony ready to disrupt proceedings. Interrupting Auntie Im’s prayers, Han-joon is the first to appear. Alongside Su-cheol, he taunts the shaman by stating that her prayers have been rejected by the spirits, before exposing the fraudsters who wish to “suck the blood of the people.” Labelling Auntie Im a criminal, Han-joon dismisses the notion of feeling fear, confidently showing both evidence of wrongdoings, and the identities of the cartel members involved in the illegal project. At the point Seung-won is exposed, the episode cuts to its epilogue, which shows the manipulation of his behaviour in the past by using the sound of a pen.

What did you think of the Netflix K-Drama series Cafe Minamdang season 1, episode 14? Comment below.

You can stream Cafe Minamdang exclusively on Netflix.

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