EPISODE 422. Broadcast on January 13, 2013.
javabeans: It’s out of the snow, and into… the snow festival. On their way to basecamp, Su-geun guesses that they’ll be sleeping in an igloo tonight, and they wonder whether that qualifies as indoors or outdoors. Hm. Would you prefer to sleep in the ice house, or out in the snow? It’s sort of potayto-potahto.
girlfriday: It IS an impressive ice sculpture. Just… not as cool when you consider that it might be your home for the night. The igloo is definitely the focal point, and it’s surrounded by other giant sculptures like polar bears, penguins.
javabeans: It looks like the crystal cave in Superman. Dude. I’m not sleeping there. There’s a huge ice slab inside, which looks like this raised platform, or maybe also a morgue.
girlfriday: I know! I think it’s actually supposed to be a fancy-looking bed, but all carved out of ice. Eeeee. The boys immediately start playing around like little kids, dragging Jong-min around on the ice slab, and Tae-woong snaps the beak off the penguin. He looks so guilty.
javabeans: There’s even a huge face carved in snow of Bird PD. For real. It’s creepy.
girlfriday: Hahaha. I want the behind-the-scenes footage of the ice sculpture people going, Igloo, check, winter animals, check. Wait, they want us to make a what?
javabeans: Shi-kyung gets down to bizness, asking about dinner. Bird PD hypes it up as one of the things Korean people most love, and they all start exclaiming that it’s premium Korean beef for sure, something this locale is known for. Only to find that it’s… drum roll… ramyun. A long beat as seven faces fall and mental dialogues curse Bird, and then they ask hopefully, “With beef on the side? Or ramyun made with beef?”
girlfriday: Aw, sadness. They’re getting regular ramyun with no beef, and get this: They might not even win all the ingredients for plain ramyun. What, now? He tells them they have to win each part separately. Like the noodles, then the soup packets??
javabeans: Yikes. There are not a lot of ways to make ramyun more pitiful.
girlfriday: There are a few additional ingredients they can win, like rice, kimchi, eggs and cheese, and some seafood.
javabeans: Imagine if they win the noodles and no soup packets. You get carby tasting water-noodles.
girlfriday: Seriously, what good is all the other stuff without any flavor packets?
javabeans: Is it weird how the thought of pitiful dinner makes me even hungrier than shots of the full spread? Maybe it’s sympathy hunger pangs, like men get with pregnant wives. They ask what “basic” ingredient they’ll get — the thing they are given automatically, without needing to win it in a game — and Bird chirps, “Water!” He’s serious.
girlfriday: Hee, Seung-woo fake-launches a snowball at him in response. The game will be a round of that picture-naming quiz (famous people, household items) for each set of ingredients. I’m just worried they’ll end up with some frankensteined water-noodle-garlic combo. With cheese on top.
javabeans: And yet, I kinda want to see that. The first quiz round starts with photos of famous people. They get a few easily, but then Su-geun trips on a hard-to-see side profile shot. Are you cracking up that he gets a photo of General MacArthur and guesses, “Hitler?”
javabeans: That’s okay, it’s only onions and garlic. The next round gets serious, ‘cause you can’t have ramyun without eggs. This one is about Korean stars from the past, and the guys start rattling off names like one-hit wonders and older actors (and pointing out that some are bound to come up because the PDs reacted funny to hearing the guess). Pan over to Joo-won, looking clueless, with the caption: “Who are all these people?” Haha.
girlfriday: And then he gets the actor whose name the guys have been shouting, but has no idea who she is and they lose right away. You can’t really fault him for being a baby.
javabeans: It’s a decades-old photo of the actress (Hwang Shin-hye) so even I, who have the caption telling me her name, can hardly place her. And, you know, she also has a different face now.
girlfriday: Yeah a contemporary picture, and he might have a chance in hell. But I can’t recognize these people from their ‘70s photos either.
javabeans: The guys start to complain about the unfair parameters of this quiz and offer to re-do with half the prize. I love how Seung-woo makes it sound like they’re being SO sacrificing to give up the cheese, when you know they’re just trying to win the eggs.
girlfriday: So they do a round without Joo-won for a measly three eggs. Dude, Lee Soon-jae looks so different. I mean, when they name him, I can see it, but damn. They note that he looks just like Tae-woong, and it’s true — they could be father and son.
javabeans: Tae-hyun loses the kimchi, and it’s a sad sad moment all around. They ask for a deal and get denied, but kimchi is just too big a deal to not fight for. So they offer to give Tae-hyun a punishment for a second chance. Su-geun: “Tae-hyun will go into the water shirtless!” Tae-hyun: DEATHGLARE.
girlfriday: WHAT? Dude, that’s just mean.
javabeans: Thankfully (?), the only water available here is frozen solid at the moment.
girlfriday: So then Tae-hyun offers to take off his shirt (or the twenty layers he’s wearing on top) and lie down on the igloo ice slab for five seconds, and Bird happily agrees. Heh.
javabeans: Omg, it’s like the cheesiest pin-up calendar ever. Tae-hyun lies down on his stomach with his chin in his hands, all smiling coyly. It’s worse/better because the igloo already looks like a really cheap movie set (who knew the real thing could look so faked?) and this just puts it over the top.
girlfriday: So cute. He actually rolls around on the thing (Brrrrrrr) and Shi-kyung acts as a human door. So they get their second chance at kimchi. But THEN! Joo-won screws it up on the second question. Lordy, they’re never getting this kimchi.
javabeans: The moment Joo-won gets his question wrong, Tae-hyun starts stripping him. Hee. This time he has to go for ten seconds.
girlfriday: Strip! Strip! This quiz won’t be over till they’re all topless and lying on that thing. Joo-won finally gets all his layers off, and does a flying pose to Gaksital music. Wheeee!
javabeans: He looks like he’s being Superman with his limbs in the air. I bet he’s just minimizing surface area, but the caption points out: “You look cool… pointlessly.” Haha. Su-geun jokes that if Jong-min loses the next time he’ll take off his bottoms. Jong-min: “I’ll show you everything!”
girlfriday: Let’s not and say we did.
javabeans: Caption: “No, thank you.” They lose the kimchi, and next is seafood.
girlfriday: Man, all that nekkidness, and still no kimchi.
javabeans: Dude this quiz is impossible. Even I don’t know what Phoebe Cates looks like.
girlfriday: They give up the crab and try for a few mussels… and unsurprisingly, Tae-woong does not know who New Kids On the Block are. Ha.
javabeans: My respect for him just went up a few notches. (Although… he did guess Duran Duran. HAHA. All those American pop idols look the same?) This is going to be a really sad dinner. And a sad night.
girlfriday: So then all of a sudden, Bird PD gets up to say he’s going to the bathroom, and the boys immediately start complaining. When he comes back, Shi-kyung’s in lawyer mode, all “This isn’t right!” Su-geun: “If you’re the head PD, you should go in your pants!” HAHAHAHA.
javabeans: I love Lawyer Shi-kyung. Especially since they pointed out earlier that Shi-kyung and Bird have this… interesting dynamic. Like where Bird has prepared retorts to all Shi-kyung comments. And now Shi-kyung demands some sort of compensation for their damages (of being left to the cold while Bird moseyed along to the bathroom takin’ his sweet time).
girlfriday: It’s finally time to play for noodles, which they have to win, otherwise it’s three eggs and one mussel for dinner. Thankfully it’s cartoon characters, and they get through the round.
javabeans: There was a big long build-up when I feared for dinner, though. Seung-woo even asked for a moment to prepare himself, and held a block of ramyun in his hand as motivation while he answered.
girlfriday: I loved Su-geun’s mental picture: “Hyung, think! You cook this! And then you eat it!”
javabeans: Hee, the next round is movies and the ramyun powder packets are on the line. Seung-woo grumps, “I only watch the movies I’m in!” I love how freaked out Joo-won looks throughout this entire quiz portion, since we know this is his weakness and he’s dying at the thought of losing them dinner. After every question he gets right he looks like he’s about to pee his pants in relief. (After looking like he’s going to pee his pants in anxiety.)
girlfriday: I’m pretty sure we’d forgive him if he stripped after each wrong answer.
javabeans: They win the soup powder handily, which is a huge relief. So next is rice.
girlfriday: They lose that, so it really is just plain ramyun for dinner. They start to cook it, and suddenly Bird PD comes to check the pot suspiciously, after Seung-woo asks for a pair of scissors. He’s like waitaminute… why would you need scissors? He takes a look inside and huffs, “Why would I give anything to criminals?”
javabeans: They stole a whole head of kimchi! Maybe he figures the situation is just that pathetic because he doesn’t confiscate it. But I just wanna know how they managed to steal kimchi (the whole head of cabbage) from unsuspecting PD eyes, and what kind of messy furtive handling that required.
girlfriday: Yeah and whose pockets are lined with chili powder.
javabeans: Speaking of lined pockets, while sitting inside the igloo the boys make a discovery: There’s a packet of ramyun literally frozen into the ice wall. Cut to black, and the sound of scraping. Scrape, scrape, scrape.
girlfriday: Ha, do you suppose the ice sculpture people did it to leave the boys a midnight snack?
javabeans: They break out the ramyun and ask hopefully if that’s their morning mission, like maybe they just secured rights to leave early. Caption: “Dream on.”
girlfriday: They get told that the igloo is indeed the losers’ bed for the night, and Bird PD has the gall to call it indoors. Ha.
javabeans: Everyone wears these hilarious You’ve gotta be kidding me expressions, particularly when he calls it “A slightly cold indoor stay.” Yes, a slightly cold -20 degrees.
girlfriday: Tae-hyun starts scraping at the ice bed with his tiny spoon, “You guys play the games; I’ll make this disappear by then!” Then they get taken to the winners’ tent, lined with furry rugs, electric blankets, and even matching fuzzy pajamas. Suddenly compared to the igloo, it looks like paradise.
javabeans: They gather to do the intro to sleepytime games, and Su-geun keeps messing up because he’s frozen and his brain is mixing up all his words. The boys are given a few seconds to address the camera (sending messages home), and Seung-woo calls out to his wife in this super pathetic voice that’s already hoarse from a day of emceeing. He holds up a note: “I’m dying.” Tae-hyun says accusingly to his family, “Are you happy, since you’re nice and warm?”
girlfriday: Haha, Tae-woong cries to his unborn child, “I haven’t even seen your face, and I’m going.” The game will be a 3:3 team competition, with one MC. To win MC rights, they’ll each take a turn down the ice slide on a plastic bag (ow my bum) and the one who lands the furthest down the slide wins. Dude, it’s pretty fast. It’s like plastic baggy luge.
javabeans: I wonder if there’s any technique involved, or just the ole slide-and-pray. Joo-won uses the same principle he used on the ice slab, lifting all his limbs into the air, and slides the farthest.
girlfriday: Su-geun gets this whole build-up when it’s his turn… and then he pulls the baggy out from under his own ass a third of the way down, and just comes to a screeching halt. HA.
javabeans: Ow ow ow, my ass! Joo-won’s doing a little skippy dance, he’s so happy to win. But now he has to be MC–and he’s always the shyest of the bunch.
girlfriday: He splits up the teams for the first game: Human Bowling. Er, is that what I think it is? Human-as-bowling-ball?
javabeans: Or as pins? Don’t you love the moment after the announcement where everyone’s just trying to picture it? Ah, but your guess is closer.
girlfriday: Cut to: Regular bowling pins, and Seung-woo and Shi-kyung winding up… a helmeted Tae-hyun lying head-first on a toboggan.
javabeans: That’s hilarious, the way he’s lying on his belly and his teammates just shoooooove him down the pathway. He only knocks down one pin (and that’s by stretching out his neck at the last minute). The other team, however, doesn’t even manage that! They opt to pull the toboggan and release, and it doesn’t even reach the pins. Sad story.
girlfriday: They get to go another round, and this time Tae-hyun goes totally off-course and sideways into a snow bank.
javabeans: If you watch it slowly, you’ll see that Shi-kyung actually sends Tae-hyun off with this perfect bowling form. Leg stuck out and everything. It is cracking me up.
girlfriday: It’s pretty hilarious, especially because from a straight-on angle, it looks like Tae-hyun is headed right for the pins, until he makes this sudden left turn. Jong-min’s team doesn’t have as much strength, but they aim correctly, and he knocks down enough to win.
javabeans: Bird announces Game 2: Snowy-Field Barefoot Relay Race. With “light fighting” allowed between racers.
girlfriday: Whaaaa? Eek, it’s just squeals left and right as they test out the snow in their bare feet. At least it’s a short course, though with the pushing and shoving, some of them have a longer journey.
javabeans: The other team wins the race, so now we’re tied all around going into Game 3: Human curling. Haha. You have to slide in between two lines for points, with your butt being the point that has to cross.
girlfriday: I wonder if it’s even possible to aim like that. It’s not like there are brakes on a plastic bag. LOL, did Jong-min give himself a plastic-bag-wedgie on his way down?
javabeans: I’ll be impressed if anyone even makes it properly down, since they’re all falling out of the slide too early. On the other hand, Tae-hyun makes sure he doesn’t slow down at all, and waaaay overshoots.
girlfriday: Su-geun tries his damnedest and gets his feet inside the lines, but his butt doesn’t make it. So it’s down to Shi-kyung vs. Tae-woong. Crazy — they both make it inside the lines, so then they have to do a rematch to declare a winner. Shi-kyung goes first, and this time he stops juuuuust short of the line. So it all comes down to Tae-woong.
javabeans: He looks like a turtle when he wins, arms and legs all up in the air, it’s so cute. The team dogpiles him (Su-geun and Jong-min) and I’m pretty sure Su-geun is crying into that hug, he’s so happy not to be stuck in the igloo. Is that why they named themselves the Igloo Team, to thwart fate?
girlfriday: It’s a risky proposition, ‘cause you figure it could end up a self-fulfilling prophecy too. But today Tae-woong is the big hero, and the losing team trudges into the igloo like it’s a death march.
javabeans: The winners are so happy that their comments (like how the igloo’s not so bad, really) aren’t much appreciated, and Shi-kyung just tells Jong-min to go already.
girlfriday: Keh, I love how grumpy he is.
javabeans: At least Jong-min is trying to be optimistic, though he fails. It’s better than Su-geun joking that he’ll come by in the morning to “ddeng” them–”ddeng” being what you do to unfreeze your playmates in ice tag.
girlfriday: He gets ousted by Shi-kyung too. Heh. The winners cozy up in their PJs and heated beds.
javabeans: It’s so funny looking, they’re cold enough that they pull on the PJs over their parkas and outerwear.
girlfriday: The losers pile onto the ice slab, and Seung-woo tries to say cheerily that they’ll never sleep in an igloo again, and Tae-hyun and Shi-kyung grump that this is no igloo — it’s an igloo-shaped ice box.
javabeans: Isn’t that what an igloo is? Aside from the ice bed, that is.
girlfriday: I’m pretty sure there’s actually a science to the igloo — it’s supposed to be warm inside, no?
javabeans: Bird prompts, “Isn’t it actually warmer than you thought?” Shi-kyung evicts him too. LOL. Somehow they make it through the night, and Shi-kyung gets up just as grumpy as he was when he went to sleep. He sees the production team busily preparing the morning mission outside, and says with this disgruntled look on his face that he should go outside early and ruin their plans.
girlfriday: Hee, I love that the captions fight back, all Neener, we’re ready for you!
javabeans: He goes out with this determined look on his face, then stops in his tracks at the sight of beef on the grill. Pause. Turn around. “They’re cooking meat!” The wake-up song comes on and Shi-kyung steps out, doing this really cute dance as Tae-hyun sings along to the song, “Look outside, it’s beef.”
girlfriday: They all jump out of bed — nothing like grilled beef as your wake-up call — and ask the PD how to win breakfast. It’s pretty simple, since there are five chairs behind them, and they ask if there isn’t some twist. Nope, just musical chairs, for beef. I’m enjoying the dancing more than the chair-fighting.
javabeans: Maybe the producers do too, since they keep the last round going for ages, which tires out Tae-hyun and gets him ousted. Hee. So the three young boys will get a full course breakfast, and the four older hyungs—Tae-woong, Seung-woo, Su-geun, Tae-hyun—get to sit around one dish of kimchi.
girlfriday: After breakfast they get loaded onto the bus, and they complain that there’s more left to the trip. But off they go, to the train station. When they arrive, Bird tells them that it’s another bokbulbok, and there are two trains, one headed to Seoul, and the other to Kangneung. So four of them will get to go straight home, while three of them will have to take the long way around. The really long way.
javabeans: That’s mean. Has this been a particularly mean trip, or is that just me?
girlfriday: Yeah I think Bird’s developing a mean streak. ‘S about time!
javabeans: He just needed to develop his inner sadist. ‘Cause you don’t start out on this show already fully formed in that department. It takes a lot of power tripping to hone that personality.
javabeans: I bet Na PD was really sweet before he took this show on too. All fluffy and generous. It harks back to that age-old question of whether monsters are made or born.
girlfriday: The losers will be eliminated via true/false quiz, and it takes about two seconds for Joo-won to be the first on the losing train.
javabeans: Under pressure, Tae-woong answers his question with a “Yer out!” instead of true or false, and sends Tae-hyun literally rolling on the ground in laughter.
girlfriday: The boys argue he outed himself, but Bird gives him another chance, so he’s safe. That was a close one. Tae-hyun is the next to win a seat on the losing train, and he just has this LOOK on his face like, Yep, that’s just my fate.
javabeans: Su-geun’s all confident that he’s figured out some pattern or cosmic mojo in the air, and says firmly that he will answer True no matter what the question is. Then he hears, “Rabbits can walk” and blurts, “False!”
girlfriday: Hee, is it just me, or is this quiz really entertaining?
javabeans: It’s totally the reactions that make it, not the questions.
girlfriday: And because they’re being super competitive and nitpicky, with train tickets on the line. Seung-woo wins the last ticket on the losing train, which completes the game.
javabeans: Tae-hyun: “Anyone wanna sell me their ticket to Seoul?” To Jong-min: “Why don’t you take a look around Kangneung before you go home?” Jong-min: “I’ve seen it a lot.”
girlfriday: And then there’s this interesting sequence where Tae-hyun and Joo-won just stand there, but the captions give them this conversation like they’re plotting something nefarious. Joo-won: “Hyung, do you really want to go home that badly? Okay, then I’ll help you. I’m strong…”
javabeans: It becomes clear what they’re up to when the train comes and the Seoul-bound foursome start getting on. When Jong-min gives the others his goodbye hug, Tae-hyun whirls him around trying to steal his spot, and Joo-won swoops in to play blocker. Hee.
girlfriday: HAHAHAHA. Is this for real? Omg, Tae-hyun really gets on the train. Jong-min: “Wait! You’re really going?! Cha Tae-hyun!!”
javabeans: He’s confused and laughing at first, but it just goes on and on and Joo-won really has this death grip around him, with Seung-woo helping. The winners aren’t helping, with Shi-kyung pointing out that at least Jong-min got a good night’s sleep.
girlfriday: I actually think it would’ve ended as a joke if Joo-won hadn’t held on, but he just kept going, and Tae-hyun saw his chance.
javabeans: It works because Tae-hyun’s had this total miserable trip, losing everything at every step, so nobody feels bad about giving him the slot. And Jong-min was the weakest on the winner’s side—could you imagine trying to wrestle Shi-kyung or Tae-woong away?
girlfriday: And there’s a dramatic finish too, with the train pulling away, and Jong-min screaming, “I’ll get my revenge!!!”
javabeans: I feel a little bad for Jong-min, but it’s also funny enough that I don’t feel TOO bad. And Jong-min is so good-natured that all it takes is a promise by Seung-woo to buy him noodles for Jong-min to cheer up and be back to smiles. Tae-hyun calls from the train, half-giggly and half-remorseful, saying, “I’m sorry! I’m only human, it seems!” Aw, but he adds that he has to go home now to see his kids for 2 hours (before resuming drama shoots), so it does actually mitigate everything.
girlfriday: Awwwwwww. How can you be mad at that? And then he promises into the camera that he’ll repay Jong-min and suffer a punishment in his place next time.
javabeans: I do think Jong-min takes this better than anybody else would. He’s an interesting character, in that he’s so sweet and good-natured that you can’t hate him, but you can also see why he sorta becomes the butt of jokes most easily of the bunch. And even when he’s well-meaning he can be inadvertently annoying, or insulting. At least now that they’ve all wronged him maybe that’ll tilt the balance in his favor for a while.
girlfriday: Or he’ll blow all his good-favor points with another betrayal. But that’s variety for ya.