Episodic Thoughts: Ghetto Justice (Episode 12)

Ghetto Justice <怒火街頭>
TVB Series 2011

Cast: Kevin Cheng, Myolie Wu, Sharon Chan, Sam Lee, Eddie Kwan, Mandy Wong, Jazz Lam, Joyce Tang, Shek Shau, and others.


Remarks : This is a watch-as-I-write-from-memory episodic thought (a combination of episode summaries, reviews & critical analysis episode per episode) and therefore please take note that this write-up will contain MAJOR SPOILERS for this particular episode and some creative license was used when recreating certain scenes or dialogue. Please refrain from revealing future SPOILERS in this episode.

I absolutely forgot about the very last scene of Episode 10 where Teng and Jing were in the middle of a gang war in SSP (Seriously?! Never seen anything of that sort in HK at all! And I was in SSP until late at night!) and Teng rescued Jing and Jing stared at Teng for being so… manly.

Now recap for this current episode, new case but at the 2nd half and I don’t know much so I can’t put the header yet in case it is some major spoiler. And this is the worst episode thus far.

First, Jing.

Jing and Kris going for some BFF moment and of all places they were walking on, it was a street filled with gwailos. Very true to Kris’ nature I suppose, to mix in high class area. Anyway basically to get the long story short, Jing confessed she is falling for Teng and Kris encouraged her to go for it (is she serious?!) but Jing said sadly it isn’t possible with someone her background, especially not with someone like Teng.

Pause here.

I find this script here insanely dumb. Isn’t it obvious? Teng’s father is rich, how Kris can ever overlook that fact and even congratulated Jing with Teng when she herself couldn’t look beyond her high nose when she encountered certain groups of society? This is in direct contrast with a later dialogue she will have with Law Ba. Insanely dumb. I feel this series as the longer it goes the more usual it became which is disappointing.


Anyway also was mentioned Kris sorta like dating Law Ba but not quite. They’re still at the dinners level.

Now back to proper content.

Teng, Mrs Leung went to deliver stuff to the old lady we often see in previous episodes, one that Jing went to see as well and we are told she has not been visited by her daughter for quite some time, when suddenly she

received a call and she said “It is from the police, something has happened to my Ah Lai!!”.

They rushed to Ah Lai’s home, as in Miu Yeuk Lai her daughter and please tell me if this scene is not the most insensitive scene ever, right up there next to Bobby Au Yeung in Forensic Heroes giving a lecture about the wrongs of murdering someone when the accused didn’t murder anyone and the victim fell and hit her head on the bathtub and died from that. Yes, seriously going down the dumb road!

At the house, Chik was surprised to see Teng and gang and realised the old lady was the mother. Another police dude who probably never took any sensitivity course said in a very loud emotionless almost patronizing tone “You’re the mother of Miu Yeuk Lai? Please listen to me. Neighbours complain of a smell and when the door was opened, we wound your daughter dead on the bed. She has died at least for a few days from the looks of it.”

And guess what? Of course old lady rushed into the room, saw her daughter’s body and if it was smelly NO ONE INDICATED AS SUCH which is strange, grandma threw herself onto the daughter’s body and shook her, crying and all. There goes the evidence if any.

Later police concluded it was suicide by taking pills. Grandma refused to believe, kept saying “She was murdered!! Murdered!!”. Later she remembered her daughter having an affair with the landlord who happens to be a retired official, not sure who or which rank but she will recognise him by picture. Teng wasn’t too pleased to hear that as he immediately thought the police concluding it was suicide was due to this high ranking person. I thought urghhhh oh please, must it always be so personalised sort of case? I thought Ko Wing Leung case was touching without him being father/brother/uncle/grandpa of any of our leads in here. Kinda cliche!

At roadside stall, Teng and gang were having supper when Teng and Chik got into an argument. Teng accused the police of closing the case when it involves high ranking officials. Chik felt insulted and the argument escalated to a shouting match until Law Ba stopped them and gently said “We owe a duty to grandma Yim to at least investigate before closing the case” and Chik agreed and so Law Ba instructed Chik to check with forensics on their findings and George to check who is the landlord.

Later, Chik arrived at Law Ba’s office and referring to his notes he said “They found FIFTY TIMES more than usual of sleeping pills in her stomach and concluded suicide” and Teng sneered “Closing the case so soon eh?” and before another fight ensued Law Ba said “50 times?”

Pause here.

Yes Law Ba I too think that is overkill.


“Did they mention about the pills stuck at the throat?” and Chik checked and said “Yes but I know what you’re getting at, the forensics said it could be she vomited”.

Pause here.

If the pills are present in her throat it could also mean she was force fed and she didn’t swallow or she was dead when she was force fed.


Teng angrily said “She could have been forced to swallow those pills! Have you all really investigated?!” and again another fight about to begin when Law Ba casually asked “Where is George? Shouldn’t he have checked with the land office by now?”.

Outside George arrived, looking troubled when he stumbled into Mrs Leung who said “Lawyer Mai (can’t call him Barrister since he isn’t one so I think Lut Si is best translated as Lawyer), you’re here. Here, take this news clipping. Grandma Yim said she saw that man in the papers, about to be conferred some title!” and George thanked him and she left and he immediately tore the paper into pieces and put them into his pocket. He walked in and they asked him what was the result and he said nervously “Oh I checked. I can say for sure the landlord has nothing to do with Miu Yeuk Lai’s death” and they looked at him as he grabbed something in his pocket and Law Ba asked “Is that it? What is wrong with you, grabbing your pocket like that?!” and George said “Ok ok, I didn’t go. I overslept” and Law Ba said “Chik! Grab him, take whatever it is out from his pocket!” and Chik grabbed him and manhandled him and took out the shredded papers and Teng said “Give them to me! I am good at puzzles!” and later Teng revealed his work and all of them looked at the picture and exclaimed “LAU DAN?!”. As in Lau Dan the actor. Darn funny scene. Law Ba said “No no can’t be. Switch to the other side” and someone did and as George looked nervously at them, Law Ba exclaimed “Uncle?!”. Yes the picture was Mai Bo, George’s father, the retired high ranking judge about to be conferred some title, I assume perhaps a “bottle cap” aka knighthood. George said “Cousin, you know papa right? He has always led a very moral life, he would never have killed Miu Yuek Lai!” but Teng said “Just because he is some famous judge doesn’t mean he is immune!”

Oh Teng, why are you so damn convinced he did it? Let me repeat the facts at this time because this is darn predictable. This is not the last story so Mai Bo can’t be the guilty one. Such a personal level is meant for LAST episode. Moreover, facts again;

Miu Yeuk Lai was found dead with 50 times pills in her stomach, possible suicide

She was having an affair with the landlord that is Mai Bo. I will say Mai Bo bought the apartment for her to live in. She was the mother of a child AND married (maybe divorced, not sure). So why Mai Bo alone was suspected? Why would a probably widowed high ranking ex judge be the more viable suspect when what about other options? Her husband? Police always suspect husband first. Since this was an affair, the husband has more reason to kill her?

Anyway Law Ba said to George “Go home and ask your father” and George said “How can I ask him? How?!” and Law Ba said “If not I will ask him and he will blame you why his own son never asked and his nephew did. Is that what you want?” and George was so nervous he was having stomach ache and he rushed to the toilet. The rest sighed.

George went home and was greeted by his father’s butler, the actor whose name I can’t remember but plays mostly those scum type role and immediately my mind went “IT IS HIM! HE DID IT! HE DID IT!!!”. Anyway proper greetings exchanged, Mai Bo walked down and said “Junior…”

Pause here.

I know, educated, etc, must splatter with English here and there, pretend to be English. Where’s the scone damn you!!


“Papa…” and they sat down having lunch and George was very nervous he loosen up his bow tie and Papa looked at him disapprovingly and said “Has working in SSP been affecting your manners? If you intent on dressing improperly for lunch, then why not go and change into your pajamas and then come back?” and George straightened his bow tie as Papa said “One must dress properly, behave properly and be well mannered at all times” and George said “I understand Papa, you’re my role model and I wanted to join the legal world because of you” as Papa said “You don’t have much talent nor skills but you made up with what you lack with determination and hard work” and George said “Is that why Papa sent me to follow cousin?” and Papa said “Yes, he is talented, I am hoping he can teach you a trick or two. 7 years and then you will join as magistrate and work your way up” and George said “I understand Papa”

So… George is being trained as a judge! Understandable, he will have an easier route than many.

Anyway George was nervous didn’t know how to ask and then he received an SMS and it was from Law Ba who wrote “I bet you haven’t entered the topic yet!” which is true and George couldn’t bring himself to ask so he didn’t.

Teng got a call from his mom to remember to attend his father’s 60th birthday bash and bring Jing. He later asked Jing who said she will be busy and can’t go. Not long later Teng got a call or something and Grandma Yim was very upset and refused to eat and Teng promised to help Grandma Yim seek justice.

Next thing, Teng and public camped outside Mai Bo’s house, in mock funeral attire and a mock paper coffin, screaming for justice and “Just because the murderer is a high ranking official doesn’t mean he can escape criminal responsibility!! Justice to Miu Yeuk Lai!!!”

Pause here.

This is an exceedingly stupid scene. Why?

No police will give such a permit. Moreover no charges was brought and Teng shouldn’t have been so sure. And what he was doing was clearly and utterly defamatory and can destroy a man’s reputation. It was so stupid to see Teng sometimes a rather smart guy being so damn irresponsible.

Next scene was confusing as hell.

Mai Bo was troubled when Kris and her mentor, Ma Tik Lun (Joe Jr) arrived and from body language, Mai Bo knew Ma very well as in very old friends. Now pause… PAUSE!!!!!

Didn’t Kris said much earlier her master was someone unknown? Or not so known that PK looked down on him? That Kris wanted a better master because her own master was a pariah? But if he can be of such close relationship with such a famous powerful esteemed judge, he can’t be a pariah right?! Confusing!!!


Kris said she has a way for Mai Bo to escape. Basically she covered her face and left by front gate in his car and Teng stopped the car and got sidetracked when the real Mai Bo drove away in another car. Teng was pissed, Kris cocky and me bewildered at how stupid this entire story was.

Law Ba decided to pay uncle a visit and arrived in suit, looking very proper, minus a tie. Butler greeted him formally and Mai Bo said “LA, you’re here, that’s rather early for you. And dressed properly too I see. Come, join me for breakfast” and butler zoomed away to make breakfast as LA said “Ahhh uncle, see how proper I am dressed for you. Just for you” and Mai Bo smirked.

Pause here.

From body language, my impression was these 2 never got along which is not true because Law Ba did say earlier that he most respect his uncle. But why they speak is to “dan dan ta ta” type? What is “dan dan ta ta”? Like people speaking in a way that is like against one another.


LA gave his uncle a tin box and said he bought expensive truffles for him, uncle opened tin and smelled something terrible and it was Law Ba’s smelly sock and uncle said “LA, I know why you’re here. Let’s get straight to the point. The police came by to see me and I have given my testimony. I did not kill Miu Yeuk Lai” and LA said “Now that I don’t understand uncle. you can smell how smelly my sock is and yet.. the neighbours noticed the smell of the dead decomposing body, but you walked into the house and you didn’t?” and Mai Bo said “I already explained to the police. I did smell a stench but I thought it was from the neglected overflowing garbage so I didn’t suspect anything” and LA smiled and I can’t remember the rest of the conversation except that Mai Bo was clearly hiding something and he dismissed Law Ba and left and Law Ba was served with truffle with eggs which he enjoyed very much.

Kris was waiting for someone and it was Law Ba dressed in a suit and white shirt, rather grand for his style. He said “Why come here to road side stall?” and Kris said “Well you let me have my way the last time, so this time I shall go it your way. Come on, let’s sit” and it was the only table with tablecloth as Kris reiterated what she ordered (prawns, crabs, etc-his favourites) when the waiter arrived in a mock bow tie and vest and Law Ba laughed at him as waiter said “Barrister Law, when Barrister Wong called to book table, I felt like it was something important. Hence my dressing. Here, have a candlelight dinner!” and he lit a white candle and left. Law Ba immediately extinguished the white candle and said “Choiiiiiiiiiiii!!!!!!!!!! As if like a funeral!!”

Pause here.

True. The candle used is sorta funeral looking. Funny scene.

Anyway they were eating but Law Ba wondered about Miu Yeuk Lai’s case and discussed with Kris who concluded “Why are you so sure Mai Bo did it? I mean there could be others, moreover Mai Bo couldn’t have done it, such a high ranking ex judge about to be given a title would not have killed in such manner” and Law Ba looked at her and said “What you actually mean is she is not worth his effort to kill because of her status?” and Kris said “Let’s be honest here. Status matters” but Law Ba concluded that he is prepared to seek justice for Miu Yeuk Lai even if against his own uncle (in law).

Pause here.

I apologise for poor recap here. I can’t remember exact words but it was something like that is not so Mai Bo’s style to kill that way, etc. Frankly I can’t remember much of this scene.

Mr Ting’s 60th birthday, Teng was late and he finally arrived and Mr Ting saw Teng’s protest on TV and everyone saw it and felt awkward as Teng was dressed in funeral attire. Mr Ting was so angry he said “YOU USELESS SON!!! YOU DARED TO DRESS IN FUNERAL ATTIRE, GOT EVEN COFFIN ON MY BIRTHDAY?!?!?!” as Teng explained “Father I really forgot, so I chose this day for the protest. I am sorry!” but Mr Ting was so angry he shouted “GET OUT! GET OUT!! GET OUT!!!!!!!!!!!!” and Teng looked… sad?

Next episode, George decided to let Law Ba have his way and told his father to be prepared for the coroner’s inquiry.

Pause here.

In determining a cause of death, there can be a coroner inquiry or some other term I can’t remember. The findings can be a basis for a criminal charge. It is not a trial but a process to find out who did it or who did what that can bring about a criminal charge.

Sigh… the story in today’s episode is just dramatic for no reason. It is also exceedingly stupid, those scenes with Teng doing what is clearly very defamatory without a shred of evidence. That being said, the Lau Dan scene was funny. But the rest is so cliche. Like this series is running out if steam.

As for performances, I have no comment.

This Episodic Thoughts was written by Funn Lim, a Contributing Writer at JayneStars.com, and was originally posted at Point2e.com.

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