Episodic Thoughts: Ghetto Justice (Episode 18)
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.
Weird episode. I can understand Law Ba’s stand in this case but I thought he could have handled it better. And Law Ba has mixed up two concept; dirty tactics (such as PK’s in Miu Yeuk Lai’s case) and strategy (such as this case). As lawyers, strategy is expected so Law Ba being so upset to me maybe means he should just quit the law and retire. But again I understand his stand in this case. But beware of overacting by one, underacting by another.
After winning her case, Mrs Leung met with George outside the court to thank him. Then MIL appeared with 2 biggest traitors who are now double traitors as they ran to Mrs Leung and cried “Mommy, I am so sorry, I have wronged you!!” and MIL explained she badmouthed Mrs Leung in front of them, hence their initial reaction. And I was like TRAITORS!!! Now double traitor because they have abandoned dad. How fickle children are. Mrs Leung forgave them. I would have given them a beating. Anyway, MIL said she was ashamed of herself for thinking badly of Mrs Leung and wanted to move out and stay alone and advised Mrs Leung to divorce her useless son but Mrs Leung insisted she stays and Law Ba arrived and even like the children grabbed MIL’s hand and begged and in the end MIL agreed. I think she likes Law Ba. Anyway Law Ba also teased George about his very open confession in an open court and Mrs Leung turned shy and left and George hit Law Ba for making a fool out of him in front of his goddess and Law Ba ended up chasing George around the street to retaliate. Ahhh… kids…
Anyway poor Chik, finally a story for him and what a terribly sad one. Chik was with Jing, chatting happily when he was chased by loan sharks to repay loan. A policeman chased by loan shark!! Not really chased as in running chased but just you know, urged to repay loan and Chik said he missed only 1 payment but loan sharks insisted. Then Susan appeared and demanded “Where were you?! I waited FIVE MINUTES!! FIVE MINUTES!! You promised to buy me the diamond ring, you want to go back on your promise? Who are these people? Oh god Chik, you lend money to them? How many times I have to tell you to stop lending money to people?!” and loan shark looked at Susan and her expensive stuff and said “Wow, looks good!” and she was disgusted thinking they were looking at her and he said “I am looking at your branded bag, branded clothes, sell some of these to help your boyfriend pay off his loan if not we will send a nice long message to his station and his career will be over!” and Susan suddenly said “What? Did I saw he and I are close? I don’t really know him that well” and Jing saw all these and saw poor Chik looking stressed and she came forward and said “Don’t you think you guys are too much? Look, I will bear his loan. I will transfer to your account by today!” and loan shark said “Ahhh, Sok Tui Tin Hau, I heard how you chased a thief naked for a few streets just to get back your friend’s money. I believe you. Let’s go!” and so he left. Susan pushed Jing away and said “Who do you think you are? Don’t you prostitute get near my boyfriend. I know you want to just get a man, you being a prostitute, man hungry” and blah blah blah and Jing was getting angrier as she said “What? Just now he was in trouble you wouldn’t even sell your handbag to save him, suddenly now he is your boyfriend again?!” and Susan went blah blah blah with more insult when suddenly Chik grabbed her arm, turned her around and slapped her hard. Susan shocked as Chik cried “How could you insult someone who can possibly help me with the loan? Have you ever thought of me instead of just yourself all the time?” and Susan angrily said “Have you ever thought how useless you are? So many years as a cop and still a low ranking one and can’t even afford the deposit to a house! Useless! I don’t think we can be together anymore!” and she left and for a moment Chik felt like running after her. In a restaurant, Jing and Chik having a meal and Chik thanked Jing who said “It’s ok, not that I need the money in a hurry. You want to run after her don’t you?” and Chik said “No, it’s over…how about you and Teng? Teng is ready to leave the centre and go to France with you” and Jing surprised said “He said that? For me? But I never wanted him to do that” and Chik said “Teng loves you very much, he places you above all else. Me and Susan is hopeless but you and Teng, you two have a chance!” and Jing said “That is why we can’t be together. Teng has parents, he should place them first, not me, Teng and I are over” and Chik said “Ok, ok… what about your French restaurant? Still on?” and Jing excitedly said “Yes it is! I have been looking at names and decorations. I originally wanted to use Teng’s name as one of the names and his tattoo as the logo but now… I have to think of a new one” and so that was her plan.
Suddenly Chik heard a commotion, he walked out and saw 5 college students seating down, drunk and having war of word with a group of local SSP triad members and anyway Chik pulled them apart and local SSP triad member said “You better watch out, kid!” and the 5 college students, or rather 4 college students with 1 adult friend who was the one who caused the commotion were complaining why come to SSP for a drink, why cause trouble and so they left for Lan Kwai Fong I think.
At night, 5 of them drunkenly walking towards their car in the car park, one of them has a rich father and so was concerned for his father’s very expensive car when that local SSP triad member walked by, taunted them to a fight, which one of them, known as Ho Tai Keung did and then 3 more joined in and at last all 5 joined in in beating him, then triad member fell to the floor, already half dead or dead, not sure when Ho Tai Keung yanked 2 more onto his chest and all captured by the security cameras when security guards rushed towards them with Chik and his partner stopping the fight and Chik checked and the guy was dead. All 5 were invited back to the station where we see…
PK representing 1, his 2 students representing other 2, Kris introduced by Mr Ma with Law Ba representing one more and Ho Tai Keung being the most hot headed one represented by some unknown lawyer. Ho Tai Keung was the one with a bad background, spent time in jail before, not a university student and his father some gangster slapped him hard much to PK’s surprise, well he looked surprise. Law Ba promised to win the case with Kris and PK accepted the challenge.
The Prosecutor vs Ho Tai Keung, Yau Man Lai, Law Bing Hei, Yan Chau & Yan Yu
The case: Mob killing, beating to death the victim, Wong Chi Kin
Counsel for the state : The prosecutor, name unknown (Either Russell
Cheung or David Do – can’t remember the face)
Defense : Ho Tai Keung – Unknown, Kris Wong (Lead) & Law Ba (Second chair) for one of the other 4, the rest each individually by Cheung Pak Kei, Victor Ching & one more unknown working for PK.
Pk and his 2 students having a drink (wine no less) on a yacht (rich people does that you see, coffee shops are for mere mortals) and he was suggesting they all follow the same route, that is to blame Ho Tai Keung solely for the death of Wong Chi Kin since no one can be sure who delivered the fatal blow. Victor wondered if Kris will be willing to play along and PK said “She is a smart girl, she will know what to do”.
Kris, Law Ba meeting their client and Law Ba encouraged client to just tell the truth, something Kris disagrees with. Later Kris met with PK and to cut the long story short, she decided to join PK’s strategy and blame all on Ho Tai Keung.
The facts are simple. All 5 beat Wong Chi Kin, but at some point Wong Chi Kin was thrown against a wall and the rest no one can see what happened as obstructed by the view of the wall. Before the wall, Wong Chi Kin was very much alive, but he died after the wall, so whoever delivered the fatal punch will be the murderer and will get murder but since no one saw what happened, it will be 4 university going model students against 1 former bad background jailbird and guess who the jury will believe? PK wants to go for full acquittal, with Ho Tai Keung getting murder.
Meeting with client, who confessed he didn’t know who gave the fatal blow since he was too drunk, Kris insinuated in such a way that the client understood he was to blame Ho Tai Keung for everything. Law Ba and Silvia knew what was happening and Law Ba told Kris to go outside and there they had a disagreement that turned into an argument. To Law Ba, if the client is responsible, then all 5 are held equally responsible, so it should be at min manslaughter. I agree with Law Ba. But Kris says their client is young with a good future, why throw it all away just to be fair to an ex jailbird who started it all that is Ho Tai Keung? Blaming him would be the best way. Again I also agree with Kris. And Law Ba retorted “If our client is guilty, all of them are and they share a responsibility, and so all of them are guilty of manslaughter. What you’re doing now is twisting the truth! Ho Tai Keung will end up in jail for murder! MURDER! You know the difference between murder and manslaughter! You can’t agree to that sort of arrangement!”. In the end Kris said “If you’re not with me, you can quit! You don’t need to attend court!” and as she walked into the room she turned back and softened her tone and said “I already know your principle before I used this strategy and I respect you but can’t you for once leave your principle aside in light of over love, just this once?” and Law Ba didn’t look too convinced.
At night, Silvia and Kris, the former having facial, the latter a bath and Silvia said “Is it worth fighting with Law Ba over this case?” when the phone rang and Kris urged Silvia to take the phone and it was Law Ba and Kris rushed to take the call but Law Ba has hung up. She looked very disappointed.
Next day Kris, PK and everyone in court and Law Ba was nowhere to be seen. Ho Tai Keung’s lawyer basically said no one can be sure who killed Wong Chi Kin, so the max penalty is manslaughter and he was actually urging that, all to bear equal responsibility, which is Law Ba’s suggestion. PK stood up and basically said one thing is sure, Ho Tai Keung started it all, he was the trouble maker and so PK’s client should bear no responsibility in this case since he didn’t deliver the fatal blow. Next up, Kris.
Meanwhile, Law Ba sat in his car, looking at his pictures of his travels to I assume Africa. I also assume those were real Kevin Cheng pictures. Anyway suddenly he appeared in court fully attired, sat down as he and Kris were deliberating “Kris, quit this case now. Quit it for us” and Kris refused as the judge kept calling Kris to make her opening statement when they both stood up together and Law Ba said “My Lord, due to a disagreement in strategy and in principle towards this case with my co counsel, I have no other choice but to submit for your Lordship’s permission to withdraw myself from this case” and PK looked shocked, Kris looked hurt and the judge was rather pissed and said “This is too sudden. Adjourned the case and I shall see you all in private.”
Private should have been in judge’s chamber since they can’t clear out the entire courtroom, bringing accused to the back and all but I think they did just that. Judge said nervously “Barrister Law, if you have decided to quit, you should have done so prior to the hearing. To do so in open court casts a serious implication on your co counsel’s case, and this may prejudice the case so much that I will have to move for a mistrial. Do you understand that?” and Law Ba said “I understand my lord and I apologise but I cannot against my conscience and ethics continue to act for my client if I disagree with my co counsel on the principles” and the judge said “You do realise how damaging this will be to your reputation to pull a stunt like this?” and Law Ba said “I understand I may be blacklisted by future clients, yes” and the judge sighed and said “Well.. since you’re ready to throw away your own credibility for your conscience, I can’t say I disrespect what you’re doing. Request granted.”
Outside the court, Kris met with Law Ba, motioned him to her and immediately gave him one tight slap. Kris cried “How could you do that to me? To quit in court like that? Have you ever thought of my case?! My reputation?!” and Law Ba said “I have, and I know what I am doing. Question is do you?” and Kris said “I am doing what I think is best for my client!!” and Law Ba said “What you’re doing was exactly what I did 7 years before. And I came to regret that and I don’t want you walking down the same path as I was. That guilty conscience is not easy to live with!” and Kris said “Why must I live with YOUR guilty conscience? I will never be like you! I know myself, I can control myself! Why do you assume we are alike? I am never like you, that weak, that susceptible!” and Law Ba said “You will go down the same route, didn’t you say the reason you wanted to be a lawyer is to fight against injustice? After your mother’s shop was cheated? Look at you now! You’re doing the opposite!” and Kris angrily said “No no it is not your guilty conscience you’re trying to sooth. It is the fact that you think I can never be as good as you, that I am beneath you in capabilities. I will show you! I will prove to you I can be better than you! You will see!!” and she stalked away as Law Ba looked on.
Next episode, PK kills Jing, Teng wanted revenge and Kris stupidly volunteered to represent PK. I mean what about Jing, Kris? He killed your best friend!!!
Like I said I understand Law Ba’s stand and I understand why Kris is upset. I feel if Law Ba can’t deal with such strategy, then perhaps he should quit the law. And I do think Ho Tai Keung deserved to be charged with murder although the rest bears responsibility by manslaughter. But no doubt, Ho Tai Keung started it all and he ended it all.
But it seems Kris is moving towards being totally unreasonable. Law Ba should just let her fall flat on her face.
Performance wise, Kevin, ever more handsome did well tonight although I am seeing less and less the talented lawyer in him. I mean we are to believe he is a great lawyer but I feel so far this series has yet to really show that; we just assume he is. You know what I mean? Like PK, supposedly a very good lawyer but again I just assume he is because the way they talk, the legal arguments, none of which will show they’re great at what they do.
Shek Sau is awful as usual.
Eddie Kwan did very well. He is a good actor and I was very happy to see his Chik slapped that Susan. By the way a shoutout to Catherine Chau as Susan.
Now Myolie… luckily need not witness her speeding bullet train mouth in court but that last scene as she argued with Kevin, I notice everytime she argues or giving an angry point, she will point and bend her back forward. I just find that scene overacting, her expression painful. I don’t know what to say of Myolie without sounding petty. Amongst her recent performances, this is considered her best and yet I thought she wasn’t that great. I find she just overdone certain expressions to the point I felt embarrassed for her. She can do better than this.
Anyway 2 more episodes to go!
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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