‘Vigilante’ Episode 4 Recap & Ending Explained: Why Did Yeon Jaehak Kill Himself?


There are quite a few moments of brilliance in Vigilante that make us ignore the lack of a discussion that we so desperately wanted from it. If nothing else, a battle of wits would be a welcome sight at some point in the story. Until then, this is the recap of Vigilante episode 4.

Spoiler Alert

Who is the copycat?

Jiyong is mad at his supposed fan, and the moment they get out of the van, he is ready for rain. The copycat is equally matched, though extremely unhinged, and he says that he has no principles like Jiyong and would simply like to be able to dole out his brand of justice. Of course, Jiyong does not have it, and he will not let his mission and ideals be tainted. Jiyong doesn’t kill the copycat, but he wants him to stop. Additionally, Jiyong refuses to see the person behind the mask because all he wants is for the copycat to stop. He has no intention of complicating things by discovering unnecessary details. However, Jiyong may have underestimated his fans. The copycat is unperturbed, and he texts Jiyong that he will help him get an alibi for the injuries on his face. It was at this moment that Jiyong realized that he had not seized the power when he should have because, right now, it is the copycat with the upper hand.

The audience is not kept in any suspense and is told right away that the copycat is Jo Gangok, the Vice Chairman of DK Group, who walks into his office proudly sporting his injuries the next day. He wants to meet Miryeo because she has camera footage of Vigilante from the hospital. Miryeo is adamant that she will not hand over her video, but Gangok has his own ways of manipulating it. Additionally, it would serve the audience well to never forget that this man may be half-crazy. He tells Miryeo that they both like Vigilante and they should protect him. The best way to do that would be to hand over the video to him. Miryeo gives in for the moment, but it has to be because there is nothing substantial in the video. She knows how to pick her battles, and until she knows better, there is no point in fighting with Gangok.

Why Did Yeon Jaehak Kill Himself?

Miryeo is never one to stop investigating, and she finds an article by Moon Daeseok about Kim Samdoo and the corruption of Sewool. When she goes to meet him, Daeseok tells her that Sewool is known for controlling many illicit activities, and because they are so powerful, there have never been any consequences. Kim Samdoo was even arrested but released almost immediately due to the lack of proof against him and his own influence.

Moon Daeseok has been told by Yeon Jaehak that he has some incriminating evidence against Kim Samdoo if anyone cares to listen. Therefore, Miryeo and Daeseok go to meet him, only to find him hanging from the ceiling. The reporters are convinced that it is not suicide, and they also have proof in the form of his text messages, but the police are not ready to listen. Knowing it is a dead end, Miryeo wants to find the evidence by herself, and Daeseok tells her that they may find it at the place where they were originally supposed to meet Jaehak. The dead man had changed their meeting place at the last minute, and it could be because he suspected he was in danger or he hid the evidence for them to find.

Elsewhere, Kim Samdoo is proving himself to be a ruthless mafia don as he feeds the people who cross him to the pigs. He hears about Miryeo investigating him, and this could be the next trouble for the reporter and Vigilante. Meanwhile, Jo Heon gives Jang Soonil a stern talking-down for interfering in the investigation. This man is less of an officer and more of a thug with strength that reminds one of the Hulk. If this was a superhero drama, he would have been the hero or a formidable villain instead of such a gray character.

What is Jo Heon’s plan?

When Jo Heon came to visit the police academy, he probably knew the moment he saw Jiyong that he was Vigilante. When Jiyong had walked past him in the hospital, there was probably no mask on his face, and he was counting on his nonchalance to escape detection. But Jo Heon knew it instantly. He was denied his request to see photographs of the candidates helping Professor Lee Junyeop with his research, but that was just a formality for Jo Heon.

Meanwhile, Gangok comes through for Jiyong when he stages a fake scenario of him helping a girl in distress to explain the injuries on his face. Gangok is proving his loyalty to his idol, and he has been useful, but that is not what Jiyong is looking for. Therefore, he asks Gangok to meet him.

At the end of Vigilante episode 4, Jiyong runs into Jo Heon before he meets Gangok. Jo Heon asks him how Vigilante would write a report on himself, and Jiyong replies that he would never consider himself to be a criminal. Both of these men know that the game is up, and it is just a matter of who catches the other red-handed or in a corner. Jo Heon has no intention of catching the real Vigilante, but he wants to make him look like a fool so that others don’t follow in his footsteps. Considering the public support for Vigilante, arresting him would backfire on the police, and the legal system would be heavily criticized. This is not a win for them. Instead, if the Vigilante is shown as a delinquent whose quest for justice was simply an escape from his miserable life, the public would withdraw their support for him. For now, Jo Heon will not arrest Jiyong, nor will he try to look for evidence against him. Instead, he is working on turning the tide against him.

Final Thoughts

Frankly, Jo Heon’s strategy is admirable and the perfect solution to the rise of vigilantism in the country. Vigilante was not doing his work quietly but had tried to spread his philosophy, which had caused the unrest, and that is what Jo Heon is looking to target. Interestingly, it is not him and Jiyong but him and Miryeo that we would like to see engaged in a debate.

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Divya Malladi
Divya Malladi
Divya spends way more time on Netflix and regrets most of what she watches. Hence she has too many opinions that she tries to put to productive spin through her writings. Her New Year resolution is to know that her opinions are validated.

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