K-drama “ The Good Bad Mother ” Episode 9 Recap & Review & Analysis


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The Good Bad Mother (Korean: 나쁜엄마) is an ongoing South Korean television series starring Ra Mi-ran, Lee Do-hyun and Ahn Eun-jin. It premiered on JTBC on April 26, 2023, and airs every Wednesday and Thursday at 22:30 (KST).It is also available for streaming on Netflix in selected regions.

The Good Bad Mother Episode 9 Recap

🐷 In continuation of the plot from episode 8 of “The Good Bad Mother ” Jin Young-Soon finds the secret memory card left by Kang-Ho and cracks the code (which is her birthday) to discover that it contains Kang-Ho’s diary.

The first entry talks about how he got into law school, as he wanted to understand why he had chosen this path. One day, when a classmate received a scholarship through connections, Kang-Ho beat him up in anger.

Jin Young-Soon demanded that Kang-Ho apologize to his classmate at the police station or risk having a criminal record that would prevent him from becoming a prosecutor. Reluctantly, Kang-Ho apologized.

🐷 Later on, Kang-Ho tried to access Choi Hae-Sik’s case files and witness testimonies but was denied due to sensitive content by the prosecutor who handled it at the time. Even with help from the police, there was no way for him to obtain them. Remembering what Jin Young-Soon said about studying hard and becoming a prosecutor or judge so nobody could look down on him or bully him anymore, Kang-Ho finally became a prosecutor himself and obtained information regarding an arson case which led back to his mother’s tragic fate.

🐷 Kang-Ho discovered that one of the witnesses had changed their testimony due to threats or bribery and sought out Kwak Sang-Cheol – an old friend of Choi Hae-Sik – who admitted being afraid of going against dangerous people after Song Woo-Byeok warned him not to interfere with state affairs as it would make him seem like a communist sympathizer. Kwak Sang-Cheol knew something wasn’t right after hearing about Choi Hae-Sik’s death but couldn’t find any new evidence while fearing retaliation from Song Woo-Byeok.

🐷On the eve of his appointment ceremony as prosecutor general, Kang-ho intentionally kept Mi-Joo away from seeing the files and asked her not to attend the ceremony as he had somewhere else to go – the police station to investigate his father’s death. He discovered that evidence of foul play had been erased, and someone was behind it all: Oh Tae-Soo. To get closer to Song Woo-Byeok (who worked closely with Oh Tae-Soo), Kang-Ho used Ding Jong-Gu’s trust in him to frame him for a crime he didn’t commit so that he could contact Song Woo-Byeok.

🐷Kang-Ho also got close to Oh Tae-Soo through Ha-Young but was humiliated when he found out that Oh Tae-Soo planned on marrying Ha-Young off to a wealthy man from Doosung Group while cutting ties with Song Woo-Byeok due to their dirty past together before running for president.

Kang-Ho learned from the prosecutor general that Song Woo-Byeok sent a woman after Oh Tae-Soo, but he also found out Secretary Hwang Soo-Hyun was pregnant and wanted Kang-ho’s help faking their deaths. In exchange, she would give him confidential information about Woobyeok Group.

🐷With Hwang Soo-Hyun’s assistance, Kang-ho finally obtained proof of paternity between Oh Tae-soo and his child. However, she warned him that if they were caught by Oh Tae-soon or anyone associated with him, everyone around them would be in danger too. Later on, Kang-ho agreed to become Song Woo-byeok’s adopted son but was asked by him personally to eliminate Hwang Soo-Hyun – which he did not do; instead helping her escape overseas.The next day, Kang-ho took Ha-young back home where they searched for his mother in the countryside and hid the memory card behind one of their photos.

🐷Returning to the present in Kang-Ho’s diary, it was written that Choi Hae-Sik’s case has long passed its statute of limitations and cannot be used to fight against Song Woo-Byeok and Oh Tae-Soo. What Kang-Ho truly wants revenge for is the ruined life his mother suffered because of them.

He understands that destroying Song Woo-Byeok and Oh Tae-Soo is an extremely dangerous task, which is why he cut ties with his mother Jin Young-Soon. However, he promised to return to her side once everything is over and enjoy hot green bean pancakes together. Jin Young-Soon doesn’t want Kang-Ho to seek revenge anymore; she even burned all of his documents.

She finally understands how hard, lonely, and scared Kang-Ho was in the past. Jin Young-Soon wants him to live a good life without any thoughts of revenge – that would be the best kind of revenge.

The Good Bad Mother Episode 9 Review and Analysis

The Good Bad Mother Recap and Review Episode 9

Episode of “The Good Bad Mother ” returns to Jung Jong-Gu’s case, which may be a bit confusing as it was introduced in previous episodes. However, this case is basically a deliberate move by Kang-Ho to get close to Song Woo-Byeok. Kang-Ho uses cruel means and takes advantage of Jung Jong-Gu’s trust, ultimately leading to his downfall.

Kang-Ho’s goal is to make Song Woo-Byeok like him because Song Woo-Byeok’s grandson is the real culprit behind the case. If Kang-Ho helps clear his name, he can gain access to Song Woo-Byeok. This explains why Song Woo-Byeok likes Kang-Ho so much and even adopts him as his son. The irony of this case lies in how Kang-Ho used similar tactics as Oh Tae-Soo did – stepping on others’ corpses for personal gain.

In this episode of ” The Good Bad Mother ” through Jin Young-Soon reading Kang-Ho’s diary, we learn about the psychological trauma that has been affecting him all along. It is important to note that Kang-Ho also harbors resentment towards society for its unfairness – something he expressed when he first entered law school with hopes of achieving justice and fairness.

It was surprising that besides Jin Young-soon’s request, there was another reason why Kang-ho went into law school: “Why did your father die so unfairly? Give me a reason.” Therefore, this scene not only shows us that Kang-ho does not resent his mother but also reveals how she forced him into becoming a prosecutor due to her own anger towards societal injustice.

In other words, despite everything, Kang-ho loves his mother deeply but wants to understand what led her down such an extreme path. When he says “I want to figure out why I had no choice but to come to law school.” he is not blaming his mother for forcing him but rather trying to understand the societal injustices that led him down this path.

In ” The Good Bad Mother ” the screenwriter portrays Kang-Ho’s personal experience of what is unfair in a gradual manner. While studying law, Kang-Ho witnesses the phenomenon of unfairness where classmates who skip class and do not submit reports can still be ranked first in their department and receive scholarships. No matter how much he protests, it is ineffective. In the scene at the police station, Jin Young-Soon apologizes to students out of fear that Kang-Ho will be sued. This deeply hurts Kang-Ho as he wonders why his mother is so cowardly.

In this scene, Jin Young-Soon’s plea to her classmates represents self-degradation and humility. From Kang-Ho’s perspective, he finally understands why his father was wrongfully accused and died because such a position has already created an inferiority complex within oneself. Jin Young-Soon has already formed an acceptance of the game rules of inequality within herself. However, later on, Kang-Ho realizes why his mother acted so submissively – if she did not act this way, she would have been unable to turn things around for herself.

Mom, are you saying I should beg him for mercy? Do you want me to become a ruthless coward who stops at nothing? Is that what you want?” This marks an important turning point in Kang-Ho’s relationship with Jin Young-Soon.

I remember when Kang-Ho told Jin Young-Soon that he wanted to become Song Woo-Byeok’s adopted son; he said coldly: “Isn’t this what you wanted?” Therefore, Kang Ho became so callous and indifferent not because he resented Jin Young-soon’s stubbornness but rather due to experiencing firsthand how some privileged classmates could easily succeed without effort while others struggled despite working hard.

In this episode of ” The Good Bad Mother ” we see that although Kang Ho may not fully understand Jin Young-Soon’s thoughts, he does understand that the unequal conditions forced upon her are due to “social status.” If Jin Young-Soon and Choi Hae-Sik were from high-ranking political or business families, they would not have been reduced to kneeling. Therefore, Kang-Ho understands that inequality in this game is caused by having no power or influence. Only when Kang-Ho becomes a prosecutor with authority can he seize his own “equality.” This is why the police tell him: “When you become a judge or prosecutor, come back and arrest me for dereliction of duty.”

Therefore, Kang-Ho did everything he could to get close to Song Woo-Byeok and Oh Tae-Soo. He not only wanted revenge but also wanted to be near them to gain a “ticket” for power. This goes back to when Kang-Ho finally understood what Jin Young-Soon had told him: “Once you become a judge or prosecutor through education, no one can look down on or bully you. That is true power.” Therefore, Kang-Ho didn’t resent Jin Young-Soon but instead understood her good intentions and advice. This also explains how Kang-Ho’s revenge plan began in that moment and how he expressed his love and concern for his mother in his diary.

In episode 9 of ” The Good Bad Mother ” I think the main point of Kang-Ho getting close to Oh Tae-Soo and Song Woo-Byeok was not just about gaining power but also about collecting evidence related to his father’s death case or finding key evidence that could destroy Oh Tae-Soo and Song Woo-Byeok because it was shown in the drama that Kang-Ho could only access the court verdict at the end. The director even filmed a scene where Kang-Ho wrote down Oh Tae-Soo as the prosecutor and Song Woo-Byeok as the defendant. In addition, there is a secret room in Kang-Ho’s residence where he probably keeps some evidence (the documents burned by Jin Young-soon at the end of this episode).

However, since Choi Hae-Sik’s case has already exceeded its statute of limitations, it cannot be overturned. Therefore, the evidence locked up in Kang-ho’s secret room should be confidential information from Woobyeok Group because this is proof of crime committed by Song Woo-byeok and Oh Tae-soo – this is what gives leverage over them. Based on past episodes of “The Good Bad Mother” and the plot of this episode, Kang-Ho’s plan is to intentionally get close to Ha-Young so that he can also get closer to Oh Tae-Soo and Song Woo-Byeok for power and money. At the same time, he can collect evidence of their crimes for revenge. Therefore, everything Kang-Ho does as a prosecutor has a purpose. To summarize:

🅰. During Kang-Ho’s student years, he tried to access information about a fire at his home but was constantly blocked. He realized that in this society, those without power will always be bullied and that having power is true strength. While studying, he had the opportunity to meet Oh Tae-Soo for the first time and learned that Oh Tae-Soo had a daughter.

🅱. When Kang-Ho became a prosecutor, he finally obtained information about his father’s case which marked the beginning of his mother’s difficult fate. Therefore, Kang-Ho wanted to find out what happened. He also realized that he needed to leave Mi-Joo in order to carry out his investigation plan so he left her (this was when Mi-Joo caught him looking at some data on his computer and then suddenly shutting it down; this day was before the appointment ceremony).

It was mentioned here that Jin Young-Soon would not attend the appointment ceremony and Kang-Ho did not even want Mi-Joo to go there either because Kang-Ho knew how dangerous Song Woo-Byeok could be as Kwak Sang-Cheol told him about it earlier. If Song Woo-Byeok found out who Kang-Ho loved, it would put both Mi-Joo and Jin Young-Soon in danger (even Kwak Sang-Cheol said that his own mother’s life was threatened by Song Woo-Byeok so they couldn’t mess with him). Therefore, Kang-Ho acted cold towards Mi-Joo and Jin Young-Soon in order to protect them.

🅲. As a prosecutor, Kang-Ho deliberately used Ha-Young to get close to Oh Tae-Soo but failed because Oh Tae-Soo despised poor people like him who smelled of poverty. Moreover, Oh Tae-Soo did not accept Kang-Ho because he intended for Ha-young to marry the son of the Doosung Group.

🅳. Since his plan to get close to Oh Tae-Soo failed, Kang-Ho went to Song Woo-Byeok for help and found evidence between Oh Tae-Soo and Song Woo-Byeok’s secretary (Secretary Hwang Soo-Hyun).

He gave this evidence to Song Woo-Byeok in exchange for his help in marrying Ha-young. However, based on previous episodes, it is likely that Kang-Ho did not actually kill Hwang Soo-Hyun because he even reminded him over the phone to keep warm when going to the beach (although there was a scene showing Hwang Soo-hyun and her child’s dead bodies in episode 9 of ” The Good Bad Mother ” I personally think that someone else might have killed them later on instead of Kang-Ho; it could be Oh Tae-Soo who did it).

The reason why Kang-Ho had no contact with his mother was that if anyone knew about Jin Young-Soon or Mi-Joo’s existence, they would be put in danger. This also explains why Kang-Ho did not come out when his mother brought food to the management office one day – he didn’t want anyone finding out about Secretary Hwang Soo-hyun’s paternity test which could put himself and those around him at risk.

🅴. Oh Tae-Soo and Ha-young intentionally drugged Kang-Ho and caused a car accident.


Through ” The Good Bad Mother ” the screenwriter detailed Kang Ho’s mindset from childhood until now. I am glad that he never resented his mother: “What I really want revenge for is my mom’s life ruined by them, as well as her sorrowful role as ‘ The Good Bad Mother ‘ before her beloved son.” His way of loving his mother is direct but lonely. For someone like him who craves maternal love, it is infinitely cruel to himself. Facing an unfair society, Kang-Ho has sacrificed his life.