“Punch” – First Impressions

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Punch” is an explosive entry I wasn’t expecting for the winter holidays. The story follows Park Jung Hwan (Kim Rae Won), the chief prosecutor of the anti-corruption investigation team. His success came from dirty compromises he made for his work. His utmost devotion for his career has cost him his marriage with Shin Ha Gyung (Kim Ah Joong), who is also a prosecutor and the legal guardianship of his daughter, Ye Rin. One day, he learns that he has a malignant tumor and has barely six months left ahead of him. In order to set things right, he chooses the good side of justice and points the gun towards the source of his demise, the corrupt Public Prosecutor General Lee Tae Joon (Cho Jae Hyun).

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1) Speed

Believe it! The show starts with a bus chase right off the bat. After Shin Ha Gyung took her daughter, Ye Rin, towards the school bus. The driver lost control of his vehicle with the brakes being altered for the accelerator. The bus speeds all the way across the streets and crashes at the end leaving many injured students as a result. Shin Ha Hyung, who is prosecutor, is investigating the corruption ring from the leading office responsible for the incident.

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2) Corruption

The bus incident is related to Lee Tae Sub, a weathy chaebol, financing his younger brother Tae Joon, who is doing a campaign for the Prosecutor General position. In order to save some funds, he had to replace mechanical parts for defective ones and sell out his share of bus manufacturing companies. Meanwhile, Park Jung Hwan is collaborating with the US legal office of Illinois for framing the son of Jung Gook Hyun, Tae Joon’s competitor.

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3) Family

Park Jung Hwan divorced Shin Ha Gyung because the two aren’t sharing the same approach for upholding the law. Jung Hwan is enforcing it for personal gain even if it means getting his hands dirty. Shin Ha Gyung believes the law should apply to everyone as stated in the oath to live and serve society.

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4) Nomination

After ousting Jung Gook Hyun from the candidacy with a blackmail, Tae Joon is about to secure his new position. Unfortunately, Shin Ha Gyung is posing as a witness for the nomination committee in order to revoke Tae Joon’s candidature due to corruption starting with the bus incident. She isn’t afraid exposing her husband’s involvement in the case willing to punish him of his ways.

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5) Time Bomb

Jung Hwan decides to threaten his ex-wife by using his daughter Ye Rin as a leverage for a lawsuit. He wants to sue Ha Gyung for parental negligence if she decides to pose as a witness against his boss, Tae Joon. After learning Jung Hwan has been diagnosed with a malignant tumor from her sister-in-law, Ha Gyung decides to wield for Jung Hwan’s sake letting Tae Joon getting his new position.

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The setting reminds me of the drama “A New Leaf“. The difference lies with “Punch” taking a darker and a mature approach on its presentation about one of the biggest problems in public affairs and law enforcement operations: corruption. We have two very strong characters in the show: Park Hung Hwan and Shin Ha Gyung. The premiere really focused on building Kim Rae Won and Kim Ah Joong’s respective characters and my only concern is Cho Jae Hyun portraying the daredevil of the show, Tae Joon, who the audience has yet seen his evil layers of his personality because Jung Hwan did all the questionable work for him. I just love how fast-paced this show is and I sincerely hope it remains that way for the entire run.


It’s easy to be taken aback by how brutally bitter the two divorcees are to each other, I honestly wasn’t surprised. This is unfortunately a common way for these situations pan out. For me, this is a good change from the type of conflict that is more common is other dramas. However, based on the summary given for the show, it seems like the tides are going to change. Even though Park Jung Hwan is putting all this energy into ruining his ex-wife, it looks like there may be some reconciliation on the horizon if he’s going to switch sides and fight against Lee Tae Joon.

[tv]Don’t miss Punch on SoompiTV![/tv]

What do you think about the show so far? Let us know in the comments below!