The Penthouse Season 2: All the Shocking Moments From This Korean Drama
The Penthouse 2, the makjang (unrealistic and over-the-top) SBS K-drama centred around those at the top of the social pyramid, has wrapped up with yet another streak of record-breaking #1 ratings, giving it a strong advantage over drama viewership ratings. According to Nielsen Korea, the finale of the hit K-drama’s second season was the most-watched programme to air on any channel on that day.
According to K-pop news site Soompi, The Penthouse 2 successfully remained not only the most-watched program of Friday and Saturday nights for all 13 episodes but for every single week of its run. It was also the most-watched miniseries to air on any channel that entire week.
It's easy to see its appeal, from its excellent casting to a cleverly written screenplay, to the speed at which the ruthless characters and stories unravel. Following the end of The Penthouse 2 on April 2, we take a quick look back at some of its most shocking moments, with plots so thick you wouldn't have been able to cut them with the sharpest knife.
Warning: Potential spoilers ahead.
1/5 The Na Ae Gyo/Shim Su Ryeon mystery
Ever since Shim Su Ryeon (Lee Ji Ah) was stabbed multiple times, carried out of Hera Palace on a stretcher, and honoured with a funeral at the end of season one, we've accepted that she's dead.
Well, sort of, until she made a comeback halfway into season two as a new character, Na Ae Gyo, the supposed business partner and mistress of Joo Dan Tae (Um Ki Joon) who bears a striking resemblance to Shim Su Ryeon, and the birth mother of the twins, Joo Seok Hoon (Kim Yong Dae) and Joo Seok Kyung (Han Ji Hyun).
The plot thickened when Na Ae Gyo's butterfly tattoo washed off in the shower, the only other thing (aside from her short hair and dark make-up) that sets her apart from Shim Su Ryeon. It was then revealed that Na Ae Gyo is indeed Shim Su Ryeon, and the person who didn't survive the stabbing attack was the real Na Ae Gyo. They had switched roles at the very last minute only to have fallen into Joo Dan Tae's trap.
Shim Su Ryeon, armed with plenty of dark secrets and shocking truths, then joins forces with Logan Lee (Park Eun Seok) and Oh Yoon Hee (Eugene) to fight against Joon Dan Tae.
2/5 Bae Ro Na is alive!
Another shocker came when it was revealed that Oh Yoon Hee's daughter Bae Ro Na, who was supposedly killed on the day of the Cheong Ah Arts Festival, was alive all along, thrilling fans everywhere.
As the season progresses, we learn that it was Shim Su Ryeon who had kept Bae Ro Na alive after Joo Dan Tae tried to sabotage her life by pulling out her breathing tube. We're pretty sure that when she video-called Joo Seok Hoon from the hospital, there were cheers all around.
Shim Su Ryeon and Bae Ro Na later worked together to frame Joo Dan Tae for kidnapping them and keeping them hostage at his cottage.
The other big revelation which left fans gobsmacked was when Oh Yoon Hee rocked up to prison and revealed to Ha Yoon Chul (Yoon Jong Hoon) that he's Bae Ro Na's birth father.
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3/5 The holy trinity teaming up
The moment that we've all been waiting for arrived when the 'holy trinity'—Shim Su Ryeon, Oh Yoon Hee, and Cheon Seo Jin (Kim So Yeon)–teamed up to uncover the truth and to bring about Joo Dan Tae's downfall. Sworn enemies Oh Yoon Hee and Cheon Seo Jin finally put their rivalry aside to pin the blame on Joo Dan Tae for 'murdering' Na Ae Gyo in a big, elaborate scheme.
"Eugene and Kim So Yeon are becoming role models on set as they create extremely emotional scenes that can’t help but take up a lot of energy with a surprisingly amount of focus. Please focus on Oh Yoon Hee and Cheon Seo Jin’s actions as they devote all their energy into taking down the absolute evil," The Penthouse 2's production team had said ahead of episode 12, when it all goes down.
However, unbeknownst to Cheon Seo Jin, she would be made collateral damage when she eventually realises that Shim Su Ryeon is alive and that she helped her accomplish her revenge.
4/5 The creepy housekeeper
We need to talk about Jin Bun Hong (Ahn Yun Hong), the creepy housekeeper who takes managing the education and lifestyle patterns of Cheon Seo Jin's daughter Ha Eun Byul (Choi Ye Bin) after the latter suffers a nervous breakdown way too seriously.
Aside from affecting the already strained mother-daughter relationship between Cheon Seo Jin and Ha Eun Byul, Jin Bun Hong also began to really take charge of all aspects of Ha Eun Byul's life, so much so that she assumes the role of her mother.
The Penthouse 2 wrapped with a spine-chilling scene where Jin Bun Hong comforts a terrified Ha Eun Byul after Cheon Seo Jin has been prosecuted for her crimes. "Let's leave everything here and go. Call me Mom from now on," Jin Bun Hong said as she 'lovingly' embraced Ha Eun Byul.
The goosebumps-inducing moment will definitely stay with fans right into The Penthouse 3.
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5/5 Oh no, Logan Lee
After all is said and done, and just when it seemed like justice has been served ice cold, The Penthouse 2 throws viewers another curveball. In the last 10 minutes of the finale, what we had expected to be a happy ending turned out to be the beginning of yet another nightmare.
We see Logan Lee, complete with an engagement ring in hand, excitedly returning to South Korea to propose to Shim Su Ryeon. With all the Hera Palace villains in prison, it initially appeared to look like Logan Lee and Shim Su Ryeon will be given their happily ever after.
However, just as he's about to be reunited with Shim Su Ryeon, a planted bomb in his car explodes and presumably kills him instantly, in full view of Shim Su Ryeon. As she throws herself on the ground and wails pitifully, our hearts also ached for her.
There are plenty more that sent shockwaves through our systems which fans are demanding answers for.
How did Oh Yoon Hee survive being stabbed in the neck in The Penthouse 1? If Joo Dan Tae's real name is Mr Baek, then who is he, really? Who is Joon Gi (On Joo Wan) and how will his character contribute to the existing storyline? Why didn't anyone tell Oh Yoon Hee outright that Bae Ro Na was alive all along? Will Yoo Dong Pil (Park Ho San) be out for blood now that he has completed his jail term?
All in good time, we're sure, because The Penthouse 3 is scheduled to be released sometime in June 2021. While not much is known as of yet, rumour has it that the existing cast will return for the upcoming season.