Running Man: Episode 149
You’ll have to make sure to watch your tail in this Gumiho race where one wrong move might mean that you’re bewitched by one of our six gumihos today. Acquiring a tail, let alone nine, is no easy feat especially with a no-nonsense mat-sunbae around ready with a killer elbow and a fiery tongue.
EPISODE 149. Broadcast on June 9, 2013.
We open at an amusement park where the boys curiously note the roman numeral panels behind them. They figure it’s a couple race which has Jae-suk wonder: “[Noh] Sa-yeon?” Ha, is she due for another reappearance already?
We get straight to today’s theme, entitled My Love Gumiho. That gets the boys bustling with excitement at the prospect of all the beautiful leading ladies who have played a gumiho role to appear today. There are six ladies to complement our six men, and the boys figure that the Monday Couple will be paired off together, as per usual. Gary: “Today’s Tuesday…” Heh.
Time to introduce our ladies, and the first curtain goes up in flames to reveal Kwon Ri-sae (Ladies Code). Aw, I recognize her from her days on music audition program Birth of a Great Star as a contestant and always found her winning smile and overall sweetness as charming.
Anyway, it’s time to meet our other ladies, and the second panel ignites… and to everyone’s surprise, the third, fourth, and fifth panels are engulfed in flames. The other ladies scramble back into the castle, and Suk-jin recognizes one of them: “I saw Kim Sook!”
Aww, Ji-hyo looks especially pretty today in her white dress. Then we meet returning guest Kim Sook, who relays to the boys that while the others ran away from the flames, the woman behind the last panel barely bat an eyelash.
Some of the cast members reel in shock to see their next guest comedienne Song Eun-yi in a dress. Their reaction is like seeing that friend who was “always one of the guys” get dolled up, and she hilariously admits to feeling just as awkward in it: “They [the staff] told me to wear it!” Are those six-inch heels, I see?
Actress and radio DJ Park So-hyun gets a warmer welcome (“She’s pretty! She’s pretty!”) even though both women are in their forties. But it’s our last guest whom we’ve been dying to meet.
Everyone’s jaws drop—it’s Kim Sumi (Incarnation of Money). There’s good reason for this reaction because she’s the fierce no-nonsense tell-it-like-it-is type sunbae. Uh, are we going to have to censor a few things today?
Now we finally learn about those mysterious roman numerals we saw at the start. A traditional gumiho in folklore has nine tails (‘gu’ indicates nine) and the number of our gumihos’ tails corresponds to decade (e.g. twenty-something Ri-sae has two). The team pairing who reach nine tails first, wins.
This gives a clear advantage to Sumi’s team who has six, but that also means potentially living in fear all day. Ah, dilemma.
The boys are given a chance to impress the ladies, and they take offense when the women are all, Nah, slim pickings anyway. However, Eun-yi already has someone in mind—Jong-kook, who topples over in shock.
Ji-hyo doubles over in laughter when the boys heap praise and compliments to appease her (“You’re such a pretty girl!” “I’m sorry if I did wrong by you!”). Are you all that afraid of Sumi? Well okay, maybe you should be.
Sumi starts off the choosing, and after she checks the boys’ biceps (Kwang-soo hilariously goes limp) she chooses Jae-suk. The others wholeheartedly congratulates them, and Kwang-soo reminds his hyung to look happier about the situation: “Smile wider!” He does.
At least Jae-suk is good-natured about it, and brags that their advantage is like starting off married life with six houses. So-hyun chooses Gary (“We’ve got four houses!”), and the others immediately step back so that Eun-yi can be paired with Jong-kook as anticipation music plays in the background.
Surprisingly, Eun-yi chooses Haha instead. Then Kim Sook circles Jong-kook a few times before taking him arm. At Jong-kook’s reluctance, Sumi looks completely relaxed as she dishes out: “Just put up with it for a few hours.” Hahaha.
Then Ji-hyo selects Suk-jin as her partner (“You should consider it an honor!”), so that the kiddos can have their own potential loveline today. Aw, what a nice noona. It’s so cute to watch how excited Kwang-soo gets.
The hyungs warn Ri-sae that Kwang-soo will likely ask for her digits later, to which she answers: “I don’t have a phone…” It’s a no-go for that, then.
In the bus, the cast draws up nicknames for today’s couples. When they get to the maknae pair, Eun-yi pipes: “The stalker [and the idol girl]!”
Then Sumi whispers something into her partner’s ear, who shares with the class. Turns out that although she thinks Kwang-soo seems like a nice enough fellow, she has no idea what he does for a living. So Suk-jin tells her the half-truth: “He started off as a model, but now he’s a comedian.”
The couples arrive at a different amusement park to receive their gumiho tails. Then the hyungs tease Kwang-soo for his bashfulness in Ri-sae’s presence (“He always tries to impress the girls.” “Don’t think you actually have a shot!”).
Each of the couples will participate in an amusement park ride karaoke where they’ll need to surpass a score of 90 to move on. So they get going, and when Mr. PD reminds the couples that they need to be holding hands, Ri-sae takes the initiative to take Kwang-soo’s hand. Aw, I like her.
I’m pretty sure that So-hyun’s forgetfulness is a real thing, as she honestly admits that she only knows the recent hits. Then Gary jokes: “Are you going to forget me, too?”
Oh man, that Giant Loop ride looks like a cross between a never-ending rollercoaster loop and the Viking ride. Then the microphones are attached at strategic points along the loop, including one on the very top. So they’ll have to sing through their frightened screams, ha. Haha yells: “We’re screwwed!”
It works out just as you might expect, as they squeak in a word or two every time they pass by a mic. Yunno, not counting the times they miss their chance and shoot right past it. Hahaha.
It’s basically the same situation over at the Viking Ride, and all you hear is a few words as the boat swings back and forth. Ji-hyo and Suk-jin do a fair job to keep singing until Suk-jin gives into his fear, and the two start bickering on the ride.
Turns out that this is Sumi’s first time at an amusement park, and that spinning cup ride looks like an upgraded kiddo version to the one at Disneyland with that tilt. She yells through the song like a champ, but it’s too bad those efforts are moot as they receive a score of zero.
Count on Jong-kook and Kim Sook to bring everything they’ve got to the table. They make a pretty good team with their strong voices, and strategically holler into the mics at the right time. Whoa, and it works—they get a 95, and pick up a gumiho tail.
As for the other two available tails Haha and Eun-yi manage to conquer the Giant Loop, and Sumi and Jae-suk grab the other one, bringing their count to five and seven, respectively.
Gary mentions So-hyun’s forgetfulness in the bus—she’d stop singing because she forgot the lyrics halfway into the swing. “We got a 29…” Ha, what a random number.
They play a game to test the couple’s telepathy, and the maknae couple both name the same food. Jae-suk moves onto supposedly synchronous the Jong-kook and Kim Sook couple with snack food choices. Health fanatic Jong-kook truthfully answers: “I don’t eat any.” Not so telepathic, after all.
When the cast hears that Ri-sae is a former Miss Korea Japan entrant (She’s fourth-generation Korean-Japanese), Sumi busts out the little Japanese that she knows… and Ri-sae can barely understand her. Puhahaha, it can be hard to understand the sunbae sometimes in Korean too.
Their next game is a piggybacking race where they’ll pick up a bowl and flip it over the boys’ head on the other end. But there’s no telling whether it contains water or not until it’s too late. A bokbulbok game it is, then.
The couples start running at the whistle, and despite getting a little wet, Gary and So-hyun pass first. I love how surprised he gets when Mr. PD instructs him to act as MC for the rest of the game. He has this priceless What, me?! face.
What starts off as a game of chance quickly turns into a dirty game. Like how Kwang-soo pours his own water into Jong-kook’s bowl or throwing bowls to stop another couple.
Jong-kook isn’t in his usual tip-top form (though methinks it’s due to his recovering leg), lagging behind the others. He doesn’t blame Kim Sook at all, and Jae-suk jokes that there has only been Spartakooks has ever had a hard time: “You… and [Shin] Bong-sun.”
After the third round, Mr. PD announces that the last team will lose one of their precious tails. MC Gary interviews the remaining couples before they begin, and Kim Sook is still hung up on how Kookie isn’t running on all cylinders.
Sure enough, they end up dead last, and she jokingly vows revenge on her teammate: “I’ll get married to you!” Their tail is handed to Gary and So-hyun, who earn an additional tail along with the second and third place winners.
Haha calls for an alliance to work together, and we get a preview of the Marvel superheroes we’ll meet next week. Ack, it already looks awesome, but let’s stick with the current episode.
Back on the bus, Jae-suk expresses his anxiety about having so many tails: “What if they’re taken away later?” He and Sumi only need one more tail to win, and Sumi assures him that she can take everyone on with her elbow that’s all bone. Eek, I wouldn’t want to be on the other end of that.
After a quick runthrough of each couples’ tail count, So-hyun’s forgetfulness strikes again, and she asks Gary how many they’ve got. Exasperated, Gary tells her: “Six! Don’t you remember, noona? We’ve gone over this three times already!”
At the restaurant, the ladies are told to order food before their partners arrive. I love how both Kim Sook and Eun-yi wonder if it’s a speed-eating contest, confident in their eating abilities. But food hardly ever comes free on Running Man and Ri-sae wonders if there’s a catch.
There is, and Mr. PD instructs the ladies to assemble a lettuce wrap for their teammate in the order the ajumma laid out their side dishes. Ha, it’s been some time since we’ve seen this game before.
The boys complain that Ji-hyo has the clear advantage, but she claims that she was too busy reading the menu. Who I’m really worried about is So-hyun, who admits that she doesn’t recall the first or last item at all. Hahaha.
There’s some hope for Eun-yi, who at least remembers the first item, and Haha keeps a close eye on the staff’s reactions as she assembles her wrap. Unfortunately, the rest is wrong and I imagine the boys will be eating a lot today.
Sumi rises from her seat, and when the others ask if she’s trying to cheat, she bares her killer elbow: “Wanna get hit?” Uh, no thanks. She hilariously keeps an eye out for the staff’s reactions though they look more like death glares at this end.
In the other room, So-hyun persistently asks that they help each other out since she can’t recall the first time for the life of her. So the three teams strike a deal to share whatever information they have with each other.
Now things start to speed up for Jong-kook and Kim Sook, who keep picking up one correct dish after another until they hit a roadblock. It turns out to help them, and Kim Sook tops their last guess with the last bits of each dish, determined to finish off strong. It cracks me up how she dumps the rest of the rice bowl on top at the end.
They get it right, and quickly rush to hide evidence of their side dishes neatly placed in a row. Then Gary and So-hyun, along with Ji-hyo and Suk-jin finish off right afterwards, and the three teams gain another tail.
Before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s do a final gumiho count: Ri-sae (2), Sumi (8), So-hyun (7), Ji-hyo (5), Eun-yi (5), and Kim Sook (4). Then Jae-suk warns the others in the bus that Sumi has been sharpening her indestructible elbow. Hahaha.
The bus pulls into the final mission location and Mr. PD announces the rules to this gumiho nametag-rippin’ game: (1) Only gumihos may eliminate the other members (2) If they tear off a man’s nametag, then he becomes a part of her team. First team to nine tails or the last remaining gumiho, wins. Iiinnnterrresting.
Suk-jin suggests an alliance to Jae-suk and Sumi, promising them that he’ll make sure they win today. Given your track record, I’m not sure that’s the greatest sell, ha. Then Sumi makes a move towards Ji-hyo, who jumps back. Yeah, I think the mat-sunbae will do just fine with her elbow.
Sumi is however, an obvious target for some other couples, since she already has eight tails. But before they get a chance, Haha and Eun-yi engage the maknae couple. Despite Kwang-soo’s effort to protect Ri-sae, his nametag gets torn off, and she makes a run for it.
Kwang-soo goes through a dramatic transformation as he joins Haha and Eun-yi. But soon the boys bicker about who gets to be top dog in Eun-yi’s entourage, and it breaks into a catfight with hair-pulling and name-calling.
Jae-suk and Sumi run into this newly formed group, and Sumi runs off in alarm when the boys target Jae-suk. She’s so surprised when Kwang-soo turns to her that she instinctively starts kicking and elbowing him in the back, even cursing before she tears his nametag off.
In the aftermath, Sumi catches her breath to apologize for the slip. This also means that Kwang-soo must change teams again, and he claims that he’s not someone who can be easily bewitched.
Then as soon as he gets his new shirt color, he gets on his knees chanting, “I love you, Kim Sumi!” Hahaha.
Suspicions remain high between the couples, and though Gary and Haha agree to target Sumi’s team together, Gary can’t help but notice that Eun-yi’s hand looks like it’s ready to strike.
They walk together as Gary whispers to So-hyun that they have to remain careful. But she’s innocently gullible and Eun-yi jumps on the chance to eliminate her out of the game.
Meanwhile, Jong-kook and Kim Sook keep a close eye on the other couples. They keep to the shadows, to which Kim Sook complains about how they’re being too cautious: “You always look so aggressive on TV!!”
Haha and Suk-jin continue to strategize with their gumihos just as Sumi and her crew appear from around the corner. Kwang-soo stands in front to protect his team but when the three teams engage in a tussle, his nametag gets torn off yet again, this time by Ji-hyo.
All this team-changing prompts the others to ask if Kwang-soo is putting on a fashion show for the quick-change. Kwang-soo: “I’ll just put on another shirt over this one!” So that you can layer them? Hahaha.
It’s not long before they spot Sumi trying to sneak up on one of them. So then they head straight for Jae-suk, but in the chaos, Kwang-soo’s nametag is ripped off yet again. Man, you can make a drinking game out of this by now.
This puts Kwang-soo back with Eun-yi, and in this moment of distraction, Sumi makes a run for it. And I have to admit, she runs pretty fast for someone her age.
But she quickly runs out of breath, and when Kwang-soo approaches her, she warns: “Do you wanna get hit again?” She runs away at the first chance she gets, but Eun-yi runs up right behind her and eliminates her.
Jae-suk rejoins her, and when he asks why she didn’t use her elbow, Sumi breathes: “I used my legs first…” Ha, fair enough.
Elsewhere, Kim Sook realizes that they can easily gain another tail if they go after bodyguard-less Ri-sae. She’s been MIA for awhile now, and little do they know that she’s been hiding inside all this time.
So Jong-kook and Kim Sook roam the museum to track maknae Ri-sae down, and Kim Sook’s haunting taunts echo through the halls. They run into Eun-yi and her boys, who are no match for Spartakooks.
Kim Sook and Eun-yi face off, but they’re soon joined by another couple. Kim Sook finds herself defenseless without Jong-kook, who has a firm grip on both of Eun-yi’s boys. So she thinks fast… and tears off Kwang-soo’s nametag. Drink!
Then Eun-yi congratulates him—with five wardrobe changes, he’s now worn every color t-shirt today.
Another alliance forms between Suk-jin, Haha, and their gumihos. Ri-sae’s name comes up again, and they agree to use her to “send Kwang-soo off properly.” So you plan to help the two get back together and then eliminate her? Ha, that’s kind of brilliant.
They whisper Ri-sae’s name in the hallways in an attempt to draw her out of her hiding place. When they eventually find her, they first work to abate her fears by naming Kim Sook and her boys as their primary target. It takes some more convincing before Ri-sae get on board.
The Ri-sae bait works like a charm and Kwang-soo is immediately thrown into confusion at the sight of her. The allies hold Jong-kook off as the ladies target Kwang-soo, and rejoins Ri-sae. That’s right, everyone… drink!
Although Kwang-soo is relieved to return to his original color, he can’t help but exclaim: “Is this all going to get edited out afterwards?”
It looks like another alliance is born between Jong-kook and Kim Sook and the maknae couple. But then Kwang-soo whips around to face Kim Sook, and Ri-sae swings in to eliminate her.
That effectively eliminates both Kim Sook and Jong-kook out of the game. The other two members of the Betrayal Trio let out a hearty laugh before they declare: “Now let’s go take Kwang-soo out!”
The Betrayal Trio barely get through their chant before Haha grabs onto Suk-jin. Then Ri-sae rips off Suk-jin’s nametag to bring him onto her team.
The ladies target Ri-sae and it’s Ji-hyo who rips off her nametag. Ji-hyo can barely catch a breath before Haha and Eun-yi turn on her and the Ace is quickly eliminated. Haha and Eun-yi jump in celebration.
Everyone gathers together again for the closing, and watch as Eun-yi gets carried into the heavens to receive her prize: a golden Running ball. Whoa. The once-gumiho cries, “I’m going to become a woman today!”