Running Man: Episode 81
How much does Gary really know? You didn’t think that the Running Man staff would send one of their own to Europe just for FUN did you? Because that would just be silly and too nice of them. In this week’s episode, the cast must track down clues to find Gary’s missing bag and poor Gary’s physical limitation is tested just by staying awake.
Note: Apologies about last week, all! When real life gets in the way of variety life, it makes for such a downer.
EPISODE 81. Broadcast on February 12, 2012.
We start off today as the cast awaits Gary’s arrival at Incheon Airport. He’s been gone off for a week on his well-deserved Europe trip, and the rest of the cast take a trip down memory lane, commenting about the recent Sherlock Holmes episode. And of course, Jong-kook shows off his name tag with pride.
The staff show highlights of Gary’s trip and it looks like he went all over Europe in a short period of time – from Germany, to England, and finally to France. I love how they show a brain diagram that pieces out his thoughts: the Monday Couple, freedom, the Lol Lols… and the tiny dot that represents his worry for jet lag.
He eats and hits up all the landmarks from each country, and even runs into a few fans overseas. Highlights include the famous Abbey Road and King’s Cross Station, and Gary complains at receiving a mission card at Trafalgar Square (and his brain diagram has transformed into mission worries and stress. HA)
Poor Gary – the foggy weather in Paris prevents him from snapping a proper souvenir shot. So he drowns his sorrows concocting a breakup story about a nearby couple. Too bad Ji-hyo couldn’t join you at Eiffel Tower, buddy.
Our world traveler Gary wrote personalized postcards for his fellow Running Man cast members. Jae-suk reads his first, which is this sweet heartfelt letter thanking him for always supporting him. Then there’s an added note about Jae-suk’s ‘love’ for green, which oddly enough he’s sporting today. Jae-suk, do you coordinate your outfits so that Monday = Green?
What’s Running Man without a love note to his Monday Girlfriend? Gary writes how the Seine River glitters like her eyes (Jae-suk: “Let’s see your eyes so we can see the Seine!”), and how he can’t grab her heart just like the top of the Eiffel Tower.
The most hilarious part is that as they distribute the notes, the writing gets progressively shorter and the font gets a whole lot larger. The kicker? Kwang-soo gets an autograph. HAHAHAHA.
Today’s race is entitled, “Gary Knows.” The staff drags in identical bags that contain an essential item for today’s mission.
Just then, Gary appears, waving, and he spots his Lol Lols who have come out to greet him. Hm, they’re curiously wearing the same outfit as Gary, even down to the backpack. As soon as Gary turns to greet his castmates, a drove of Lol Lols turn up out of nowhere, enveloping Gary.
They make off with his backpack, disappearing as quickly as they appear, and the cast is left stunned. The captions read that the Lol Lols’ motive was to exact their revenge on Gary – why should he have gone to Europe alone when they did all the work to make sure that he won?
It seems that the Lol Lols have made off with a valuable European treasure which was inside Gary’s backpack and it’s their job to retrieve it. To make things worse, Gary’s been dragged away separately.
Each of our members has a series of fill-in-the-blank statements that all relate to Gary’s trip to Europe. Finding the answers will reveal a clue to the bag’s location. Looking at the long list, Ji-hyo thinks aloud, “He did so many things in Europe.”
They’re given four tools to utilize: a card of which one answer is pre-filled for them, a key, a portable video player, and a GPS marking hints scattered throughout the area that will help them figure out the answers.
The best chance of finding the clues they need should come from the man himself, right? Which is exactly what Jong-kook has in mind when he finds Gary and starts to hound him with questions. The statements are either oddly broad or annoyingly specific such as, “Gary ate [blank] in Germany.”
Though the cast is clueless, the staff takes us back to flashes of Gary’s memories – and we see that among the various types of sausages, one stood out: Schweinhaxe, a roasted ham hock. As he digs in happily, Myuk PD continues to repeat the word aloud, but Gary pays no attention. Surely he’ll remember, right?
In response, Gary jokes that he had plenty of romance and that he ate so many different things while he was there. Uh oh, I’m thinking he doesn’t have a clue. The Easy Brothers spot him here too, but with a combination of jet lag and confusion, I seriously doubt you’ll get anything out of this man.
Meanwhile, Ace Ji-hyo is hunting down clues on her own in another building. Using her sharp deduction skills, she notes that the needed hints must be hidden within the video tapes, since they were given a video player. She discovers box containing one of these right away, but is dumbfounded as soon as she pops it in – it’s an old clip of Kwangvatar and she thinks, “Gary ate an Avatar in Germany?”
The Easy Brothers have uncovered a tape like this too and we’re informed that the old Running Man clips are actually bogus clues randomly dispersed throughout the area. The select real hints contain portions of Gary’s European adventures. There are tens, or maybe close to a hundred of these red dots all throughout this map. I foresee lots of dud discoveries ahead.
Back to Gary, where he’s being barraged by question after question and they’re slowly wearing him down physically and mentally. The jet lag finally hits, and Gary groans, “I haven’t even called my Mom yet!”
With Haha’s arrival, Gary’s got nearly half the cast trying to squeeze any information from his brain. So he resolves to one answer each and probes his brain to recall his earlier travels.
Back in London, Gary hopped onto the Eurostar at St. Pancras station to board the train to Paris. The departure time was strange at 2:01 pm. So Gary pulls Jae-suk in close and whispers it was 1:30pm. Oh boy, do you remember anything correctly?
As a Harry Potter fanatic, I’m sorely disappointed. Some random teeny corner of King’s Cross is labeled Platform 9 ¾? Then there’s a portion of a cart hanging out? How cheesy. Gary thinks so too as they make him take another photo, complete with Harry Potteresque glasses. Then cue more tacky CGI effects.
Now I’m pretty sure Gary hasn’t retained any information at all, resorting to giving out generalized answers. He tells Haha that the answer is “a subway station” and mixes up TGV, a hi-speed train, as TVG. Are these guys ever going to figure anything out?
Never fear – there’s always Spartakooks who is busy scouring the building for clues. This time, however, he tracks down another fake clue, and it’s a clip of him and Shin Bong-sun. These two were linked as a loveline several times during Running Man, but alas it’s one-sided (by Bong-sun). Hehehe.
But Jae-suk discovers a real clue attached to a pillar and jots down the answer “King’s Cross.” The real clues are hidden in the most unlikely of places as Jong-kook discovers one for himself: Gary’s Eurostar ticket. And Ji-hyo finds another one: a newspaper.
Speaking of, Gary wanders into the museum Ji-hyo is searching for clues in. He curls in a bed to take a nap, mission be damned, but the Ace won’t have it and starts drilling him too. At this point, he’s simply so exhausted that he’s just giving his answers away. Well, as much as he can remember anyway.
Ji-hyo inquires after where Gary had to find a “Gerald” and we’re taken back into Gary’s memories in England. By then he’d gotten cranky, citing that he can’t keep anything straight because they keep moving to a different country every 12 hours. Oof, I totally sympathize – that can get super confusing.
Gary bumbles about Trafalgar Square trying to find a ‘Gerald,’ asking random Britons, to no avail (According to Myuk PD, it should be easy because the name is common). Frustrated, he points out that this task is analogous to trying to find a Min-seok in Korea – just because it’s common doesn’t mean that it’s any easier to find them. Touché.
Anyhow, this time he remembers correctly – sort of, because he offers a way to remember ‘Trafalgar’. There’s no ‘f’ in Korean, so ‘fal’ gets translated to ‘pal’ which is equivalent to ‘8’ so Gary explains, “So like Tra 1, 2, 3… think of Tra 8.” HA.
It’s not long after Ji-hyo heads out that Gary curls back into his bed and drifts off to sleep.
There’s only five hints remaining so get moving people! Jae-suk and Kwang-soo who look like they’ve teamed up both stumble upon their own clues. Suk-jin is upset to see his buddy being taken away from him and tells Kwang-soo to decide whether he’ll be an Easy Brother or a Lee-Yoo Brother.
They decide to link all the names together, birthing the ‘Lee-Yoo-Ji’ Brothers, but personally I like the Jailhouse Trio for these three. The new name must be awkward for them too because they can’t quite get their cheer down and end up whacking each other by accident. Then the real reason behind Suk-jin’s antics comes out: “I’m jealous that you two are running around together!”
Jae-suk discovers an extremely useful tool not too long afterward. It’s a decoder where a few cutout holes spell out the missing bag’s location.
The short nap must have helped jog Gary’s memory as Haha runs down the list to confirm his answers. This time, Gary shares that he found the departure time slightly odd – in most places, trains leave on the hour, but he recalls that it was a few minutes off. He tells Haha that it must have been 2:03pm. Ooh, so close Gary. So close.
Ji-hyo, I seriously love that you’re so awesome at finding clues. She locates another one hidden behind a display and though the others think that Gary simply ate sausages, the clip distinctly shows that the clue is Schweinhaxe.
In another part of the building, Jae-suk and Kwang-soo are too busy caught up in roleplay than trying to aggressively track down the clues. Kwang-soo pretends to press an imaginary computer screen, assuring Jae-suk that the staff can add in the needed CG effects, and the captions read: “Sorry there are no CG effects.”
Hehehe, and then Kwang-soo imagines that there’s a login code to turning on the video player and Jae-suk promptly reminds him that there’s no time for games.
Suk-jin discovers another decoder for himself, boosting his confidence. Somehow, he bucks up the courage to face Jong-kook man-to-man. His suggestion at an alliance fails, and Jong-kook astutely deduces the decoder hint straightaway, identifying it as an item that could aid them.
This is why you do NOT give any telltale signs that you know anything, Big Nose Hyung. That card you mentioned? Expect Jong-kook to snatch that away from you in about five minutes.
Sigh, what did I say? Less than five minutes later, the card is swiftly stolen by Jong-kook and they run off. No worries, however, because Suk-jin has already made marks on his card in case it was stolen. Sneaky!
Oh Jae-suk, tsk tsk – you are way too gullible. Jae-suk, Kwang-soo, and Ji-hyo end up in the convenience store to pester Gary for more. Ji-hyo casually asks what ‘sauerkraut’ is, an answer that Jae-suk immediately jots down.
Ji-hyo has reason to be suspicious of the boys since she can reasonably do just fine on her own. But as soon as she hears that there’s more than one decoder floating around, she bolts to share answers. I think the best part of this exchange is that Ji-hyo doesn’t even flinch when Kwang-soo takes her card away and without hesitation, grabs his hair.
Lesson: You don’t mess with the Ace.
Suk-jin saunters in with a puffed-up bravado, declaring that they need him, to which Jae-suk holds up his decoder and says, “You’ve got this too?” Um well, crap.
The cast broken down into two general teams, they combine their noggins to figure out the location of the missing bag. Jong-kook and Haha have figured out all the numbers whereas the others have filled in their letters. Now it’s a race of who solves it first!
With basically all the clues out in the open, the RM staff reveal each of the clues and the decoder reveals an address on Central Road. Ji-hyo and Suk-jin head out first while Jae-suk and Kwang-soo ponder over the confusing clue. They’re one character off, thanks to Ji-hyo’s misleading answer, and it takes a minute before they crack the code correctly.
Jong-kook and Haha arrive first, eager to track down the missing bag. They scour the place for any leads, opening any and every door until Jong-kook spots it – a suspicious room at the end of the hallway.
And there it is – a locked treasure chest just waiting to be opened. But there are two locks and there’s no way the staff would assume the members would pair up like good buddies over one prize. Their keys are able to unlock one of the attached locks, but puzzled that it doesn’t open the other.
Enter Kwang-soo who is seemingly confident that his key will work. As expected, it works for just one of the locks and he picks up that there must be a separate key they need. He rushes to tell his hyungs about the treasure chest and Jae-suk makes an offhand comment about if they need to rip off each others’ name tags.
Eureka. Kwang-soo rushes out with the words, “Gary Knows” ringing in his ears as the pieces fall into place. He heads back to the room where the chest is housed and runs into Gary as he’s stepping out.
Without a word, Kwang-soo rips the name tag off of his back, revealing another key and Kwang-soo hurries to open up the locks. He’ll need to hurry because Jae-suk has figured out he needs to track down Gary too…
And click, the second lock unlocks and Kwang-soo uncovers the missing bag inside the chest. For the first time in over a year and a half, Kwang-soo has finally won a challenge on his own, fair and square.