And we’re here! After six weeks of tunneling through financial fraud, forced liquidations, and Machiavellian schemes, “Numbers” has come to an end. The time has come for Jang Ho Woo (Kim Myung Soo), Han Seung Jo (Choi Jin Hyuk), and their allies at Taeil to take down Han Je Gyun (Choi Min Soo) once and for all. But can a force of nature like Je Gyun ever truly vanish? And what last cards is he hiding up his sleeve?
Warning: spoilers for episodes 11-12 below.
1. Halting the sale of Ji San Bank
Je Gyun’s bank run ploy in last week’s episodes successfully resulted in individual and corporate clients pulling their money out of Ji San Bank en masse. Jin Tae Soo (Kang Shin Il), the president of the bank and Jin Yeon Ah’s (Yeonwoo’s) father, is still somehow convinced that Je Gyun wouldn’t do anything to harm him, given that they’ve been allies for years. Yeon Ah knows for a fact that Je Gyun doesn’t care. But as much as Ho Woo and Seung Jo try to think of a way out, Ji San Bank’s debt-to-assets ratio sinks low enough for the bank to go up for sale. And Je Gyun cleverly dangles HK Equity as a buyer.
The Financial Commission agrees, barring a formal meeting to vet HK Equity. Many don’t know that Je Gyun is the real mind behind HK Equity, and those that do know don’t care as long as they get to join a man who is about to control all of Korea. Because if one bank falls, then the rest can easily be gobbled up. Je Gyun has pretty much shown every unsavory player a blueprint for how to make it happen. And he’s on the cusp of succeeding when Jang Ji Soo (Kim Yoo Ri) gets in the way. On paper, Je Gyun has no relation to HK Equity, but Ji Soo is the official Korean representative for HK Equity. She goes to the vetting meeting and outs HK Equity as violating almost every financial law there is. The sale fails. And Je Gyun is furious.
2. Forming a bank consortium
But the sale’s failure doesn’t stop Ji San Bank’s woes. Clients are still pulling their money out of the bank, and another buyer could just as easily step in HK Equity’s shoes. Je Gyun is planning to have another of his companies purchase the bank when Seung Jo gets in his way.
Seung Jo’s idea is simple but brilliant. It requires the banks to set aside their greed and form a consortium where if one bank starts to lose assets, the others will rally around them and make up for the shortfall by providing some of their assets until the bank can find its feet again. It’s a short-term loan really because when people pull their money out of a bank, they take it to another bank. Here, the banks would be doing that internally. The bank presidents drag their feet until Seung Jo points out that Je Gyun can easily do this to any of them, and if Ji San Bank, a bank with a strong history and legacy, is facing this, then all banks are fair game. The five major banks band together real quick after that. They lend Ji San Bank the shortfall in its funds, and the bank goes back to operating as usual as people see that it isn’t about to collapse and is a safe place to deposit their money.
3. Going public with all the information
Still, Je Gyun remains a formidable enemy, and the next thing we know, Ho Woo’s been placed on indefinite leave. But he still has a couple weeks before things go into effect, and he makes the most of them. Using every bit of evidence that Shim Hyung Woo (Sungyeol) left him, he sends it all to reporters—domestic and foreign—in the hopes that one of them will pick up the story. And they sure do. The international press has a field day, which prompts Taeil’s chairman (Nam Kyung Eup), who has been working in concert with Ho Woo and Seung Jo, to call an emergency meeting, kicking out Je Gyun as partner.
With the story making global news, domestic reporters have no choice but to cover the story now, whereas they wouldn’t have been able to touch it previously due to Je Gyun’s power and influence over their bosses. And Je Gyun’s career at Taeil implodes. He’s kicked out as a partner, prosecuted, and thrown in jail. And the man still smiles.
That never bodes well. It turns out that Je Gyun is even busier in prison than he was out of it. There’s more than one way to fillet a fish, and Je Gyun owns so many people at this point that he knows he can stage a comeback at any second. He just needs the right venue. And a few days later, it’s breaking news that a mid-size bank is going bankrupt after a bank run, just as Je Gyun is being released from jail.
4. Stopping Je Gyun’s final play for power
Seung Jo, Ho Woo, and their crew didn’t have much hope that Je Gyun would be in jail for a while, but this was a speed they didn’t expect. They know that this other bank’s sinking is likely Je Gyun’s work, and they rally around it before he can pounce. They convince every mid-size bank to join the consortium that the big banks formed so as to insulate them from being targeted by Je Gyun.
Even better, they ensure that the funds Je Gyun was planning to use to purchase the bank weren’t accessible to him. Je Gyun had hidden the money by creating a bank account for a troubled survivor of the same construction incident that killed Ho Woo’s parents. The account holder didn’t even know that Je Gyun was using his name to store a sizeable slush fund. Unexpected aid arrives in the form of Je Gyun’s new righthand man Woon Sang Hyun (Shin Woo Gyum), who was only using the position to ruin Je Gyun after Hyung Woo’s death. Between all them, Seung Jo, Ji Soo, and Ho Woo are able to halt the sale and force Je Gyun into a corner so tight, it’ll take him a while to regroup.
Ji Soo and Seung Jo have been slowly reconnecting over the past few episodes, with her growing increasingly impressed by the man he’s become. They reunite as a family, and she moves back to Korea with their son. She always told her son that Seung Jo was his father, so the boy knows him. Seung Jo is overcome after meeting him, regaining Ji Soo and a family he didn’t know he had.
Seung Jo leaves Taeil to create a business of his own, using his skills proactively to help others. Ji Soo goes into venture capitalism, helping struggling companies and saving them from liquidation. And Yeon Ah and Ho Woo get together too. She makes the first move, while Ho Woo just looks happy to be there.
Choi Min Soo feels a little wasted in this role because we still don’t know what made Je Gyun tick. We get a small glimpse into his head when he visits a playground to see his grandson playing and waits there for hours, just watching him. And the smallest crack seems to appear—as if he regrets that he’s going to miss out on this boy’s life. But then his features smooth out again, and it’s back to business for him. This time he’s begun a Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT), and Seung Jo and Ho Woo are already on it. And that’s our ending.
We leave with the knowledge that there’s no real way of defeating people like Je Gyun. They have too much power and influence not to survive time and time again. But as long as people like Ho Woo and Seung Jo are willing to take every risk to do what’s right, then their progress can be halted. It may all seem like just numbers, but the fate of a country can hang in the balance. And if there’s anything that “Numbers” proved, it’s that those figures on a balance sheet really do run the world. But the great thing about numbers is that anyone can use them, and that means anyone can fight back.
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Shalini_A is a long time Asian-drama addict. When not watching dramas, she fangirls over Ji Sung, and spins thrillers set in increasingly fantastic worlds. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram, and feel free to ask her anything!
Currently Watching: “Revenant,” “Numbers,” “Longing for You,” and “My Lovely Liar”
Looking Forward to: “Gyeongseong Creature,” “Ask The Stars,” “The Girl Downstairs,” “The Worst Evil,” “Queen of Tears,” “Vigilante,” “Daily Dose of Sunshine,” and Ji Sung’s next drama.
Content Source: www.soompi.com