EPISODE 77. Broadcast on January 15, 2012.
All that running from last week’s episode must have worn everyone out as they blissfully dream the night away. Dawn breaks, and a melodious morning song streams into their windows, beckoning them awake.
But this isn’t just an ordinary wake-up call – someone’s singing live: singer IU, giggling and dancing to awaken the cast. I’m just impressed this girl can carry a tune at sunrise, let alone with such energy.
What I’m more amused by is the cast’s reactions from Mung Ji-hyo‘s disheveled appearance to Jae-suk and Haha madly brushing their teeth from the window. The real kicker is Sung-soo, who rushes outside with a basket in hand to give to IU.
Everyone eventually trickles outside and Jong-kook’s entrance is by far the best – breaking into dance in front of IU like an eager fanboy. Then you’ve got the other ten uncle fans point towards themselves when she sings “Oppa” in her song “Good Day.”
When she wraps up, the boys immediately breathe down the staff’s throats for making IU strain hers so early in the morning in the cold (Fun fact: She’s the 2012 Yeosu goodwill ambassador).
Today’s teams of four have already been determined by the order of their arrival. There’s a mix of ecstasy and disappointment on the boys’ faces, mostly on Jin-hee’s end. Ha – and he looks so scrubby that the others call him the pension’s owner.
By the by, whatever happened to our slick killers from yesterday? ‘Cause in sweats and parkas, they look a lot like the lazy oppa next door.
The boys persist that IU should choose her own team, but not surprisingly, Mr. PD doesn’t budge. Thus, the teams are as follows: Yellow (IU, Chun-hee, Kwang-soo, & Sung-soo), Red (Ji-hyo, Sang-wook, Haha, & Jae-suk), and Blue (Gary, Suk-jin, Jin-hee, & Jong-kook).
Today’s mission is a Bingo Race: each team must create a bingo through completing various food missions. The first team who fulfills a bingo in the final mission will earn a well-deserved prize. And they’re off!
In their cars, each team strategizes where to head off first. I absolutely adore Sang-wook’s hearty laugh. I also love that he’s technologically inept and that when he can’t figure out the navigation system, it takes all of Ji-hyo’s willpower NOT to bark at him (It also helps that he’s older, so he gets to pull rank. Well, sort of.).
The Yellow Team arrives at their first location. Here they’ll have to get their clams to open over the flame within 2 minutes. They can’t eat ’em if they don’t succeed. RM staff, you meanies – Don’t you know that you’re not supposed to play with your food?
Chun-hee sounds like the expert in this bunch, instructing the others about how to fan it just so. But even with the master coaching them, the clams refuse to part open.
The Blue Team is served a sushi buffet and they’ve got a speed quiz before they can dig in. Jin-hee answers incorrectly and they’re forced to simply stare at the delicious array before them. The staff keep pouring out questions and the team keep shelling out wrong answers. Boy, are they ever going to eat?
The Red Team’s mission is to replicate the same table setting like the one next door. With so many side dishes, this is going to be difficult. Sang-wook is such a go-getter declaring that they’re finished even though he isn’t certain where everything is placed.
Another peek will earn them an extra item to place and he says, “Well that’s better!” His teammates glare.
HAHAHAHAHA!! I feel so bad for the Yellow Team frantically blowing their flames, almost willing their clams to open wide with their minds. One thing they’ve definitely got going for them is teamwork as they help each other out as soon as theirs opens. After what seems like endless rounds of fanning, the last clam pops open with a mere 3 seconds left on the timer.
All the teams finish their first mission and dig in to their hearts’ content. Man, I should have eaten dinner before this – this HD camera makes the food look so enticing that I’m seriously salivating right now.
For their next stop, the Red and Yellow Teams choose a crab restaurant. The mission here is to flip crab shells on a tray. Hee – I love how Sang-wook acts with such bravado about this task and then masks his failure with his trademark rich chuckle.
Then when he suggests a new method, Ji-hyo shouts at him to stick to how they’ve been doing it. He fails. Again. Kwang-soo: “Man, this hyung isn’t good at anything either.” Speak for yourself, buddy.
The PD steps in to inform them that the Blue Team already completed two missions, so the staff tweaks the rules to speed things along. Haroro fails and to punish him, Jae-suk leaves him out of the team cheer. Aww.
Jae-suk and Ji-hyo pass with ease and it’s the two black holes I’m worried about. Ji-hyo instructs Sang-wook to stare at the crab’s eyes (ew) and not to slip up just to boost the show’s entertainment value.
Sang-wook: “But I’ve never tried to be funny!” Hahaha – you’re killing me with the one liners today.
He flips, and now it’s down to Haha who… fails and then calls to reverse time like the Time Controller he is. They succeed after another round and the Yellow Team also passes quickly thereafter. While they munch on crab (drrooool), Sang-wook wonders how fun it would be if they tried to match a 10 x 10 bingo versus 3 x 3. More glaring.
With only one mission left, all of our teams hurry to their last bingo mission location. The Red Team must successfully answer two Yes/No trivia questions. The first, (“Is the winter solstice the coldest night of the year?”) leads to an even split in their answers, and Haha belatedly argues that he put up the wrong answer, nudging Ji-hyo to play along.
Sang-wook is the odd one out about a question concerning Odong Island as the biggest in Yeosu (he gets it right). They press him for more info and he replies, “I don’t know anything past that!”
HA!!! This question, (“Haha is the shortest among the Running Man cast.”) leads to these above answers, and it ignites Haha’s temper. He’s taller than Ji-hyo (maybe with shoe lifts?) and the boys try to preserve his pride by saying it was pretty tricky.
Jae-suk adds that this kind of ambiguous question would be too difficult to get right on a college entrance examination. I read somewhere that pop culture questions have been included in recent years, so there’s hope for you yet, Haha!
Once everyone gets their bingo, a new card of numbers appears. Their final mission is to tear off each other’s tags (this time, there are numbers instead of their names) to create a bingo. There are some extra numbers planted around the area – so get a huntin’!
Everyone’s got their eyes on grabbing the hidden numbers but the Yellow Team has the biggest disadvantage – they’ve got two weaklings: Kwang-soo and Chun-hee. Or as Jin-hee puts it, “Everyone’s coming after you guys!” But these guys seemingly have the easiest game plan as they only need to grab Jae-suk and Gary while searching for one extra digit.
Chun-hee asks Kwang-soo where the staff tends to hide their clues. Poor Kwang-soo tells him that he doesn’t have a lot of experience in finding things since he’s usually eliminated first. Aww.
They inspect a suspicious helicopter for clues, and Chun-hee gets the not-so-brilliant idea that it might be under the helicopter and then they try to LIFT it. *facepalm* These two.
The Blue Team sails into the final mission location and their epic introduction is hilarious – you’ve got two strongmen, Jong-kook and Jin-hee, and then they abruptly cut to Gary and Suk-jin, who’s yawning.
The island is fairly hilly and when Jae-suk stares at a steep incline, determined to climb it to find more clues, his VJ asks hesitantl, “Are you going to up?” Jae-suk: “Of course I am!” and his poor VJ huffs while trudging behind him.
But Jae-suk is convinced that something will turn up past the bend. And something does… more hills.
His VJ suddenly gets spooked by something in the distance which also scares Jae-suk. There’s nothing there when they zoom in to check, which earns a scolding by Jae-suk. His VJ defends that he thought he saw a wild pig. Heehee.
Jae-suk returns just in time to interrupt another one of Haha’s love declarations, to IU this time, and chides him for doing not doing his part for the mission. Haha grabs his extra bingo cheat sheet and rips it apart, reminding us of Jae-suk the Space Controller. Jae-suk gets worked up and Haha asks in reply if he should turn back time.
They spot Sang-wook, the self-declared seeker extraordinare, in the far distance and shout to say hello. He interprets this as calling him over and in no time, he runs over to meet them, showing off the number he tracked down for his team.
The Blue Team soon join them, noticing that Jae-suk and Haha look mighty suspicious guarding Sang-wook so closely – they must be holding onto a clue.
They taunt each other, although I don’t see why they do since these guys are a pretty weak barricade. Like how Jae-suk starts dancing to “Gee” to insult Jin-hee (his surname is Ji = Gee), and Suk-jin encourages him to dish it back by calling him ‘Grasshopper.’
Jin-hee: “How can I call the “Nation’s Grasshopper” a “Grasshopper”?” which effectively works as a back-handed insult but still saves face for Jae-suk, who is often known as the nation’s MC.
I know that Kwang-soo isn’t necessarily the best Running Man, but I get this feeling that he’d be a really great oppa and just super fun. Ooh, and then he finally sees it: a clue hidden in the cracks. Did you really think they were going to be able to find that, RM staff?! And then Chun-hee finds another one squeezed in between the gap of a rock wall.
Now there’s only one number left to find, and the Yellow Team has the biggest advantage on the final bingo board. That’s great and all, but when are you going to start ripping off some tags, people!
As if the cast heard my cry, Jae-suk rallies his team down to corner Kwang-soo and IU. Kwang-soo does his best to protect IU, who nearly grabs Jae-suk’s tag before they’re joined by the rest of their teammates.
The Blue Team, however, observes this scene unfold from far off. Jin-hee suggests that they intervene once the weaker teams finish each other off, and his teammates call him Ji Zhuge Liang (a reference to Zhuge Liang, a famous military strategist during the Three Kingdoms period in China). They turn to leave, but Gary warns that they might create an alliance…
…Which is exactly what these two teams are busy doing. Haha instructs Kwang-soo and Chun-hee to goad Jong-kook into chasing them, though it does little to bubble Jong-kook’s anger.
But then Chun-hee grabs Haha’s tag which topples the new alliance and results in a domino effect. Everyone starts grabbing each other’s tags (to the Blue Team’s amusement) and various scuffles breaks out between them. By the end of it, Haha successfully rips off Kwang-soo’s tag and Sung-soo eliminates Ji-hyo.
The Red Team is pleased to pick up Kwang-soo’s discovered clue. Now they have to eliminate the Blue Team members who are on the move. In an ideal situation, they’ll take out Gary, but if it comes down to the wire then they’ll have to attack Jin-hee.
Speaking of whom, he’s busy climbing up the hill, concealing himself in the thickets. He’s so engrossed in spy mode that he doesn’t notice that he’s torn his jacket, revealing the stuffing. At least it makes for some laughs as he runs across the hills, feathers floating into the air behind him.
Jin-hee attacks the Red Team and is soon joined by Gary. It doesn’t take them long to realize they’ve been lured into a dangerous situation and retreat for a brief break. Everyone gathers around for a final tussle – Sung-soo dives for Jong-kook to save IU, and Jae-suk reaches for Gary’s back…
And Jae-suk cleanly rips the tag off, earning the coveted bingo for his team! The Red Team win a helicopter ride off of the island, and they lift off, zooming into the sunset.