Running Man: Episode 157
A crime has taken place in varietyland and four suspects face trial at the Running Man Courthouse. It’s a twist on the classic whodunit game as both sides argue that the other is in the wrong with pseudo legal terms flying around in all directions. Someone in this courtroom is a liar, and it’s your job to listen to their voices to figure out who it is.
EPISODE 157. Broadcast on August 4, 2013.
Case 157. Tension runs high in the courtroom as accusations fly left and right, each side pointing the finger of blame on the other. But we need to roll back the clock in order to learn how we got here…
12 Hours Ago. We open at a dressing room where the Betrayal Trio and Gary relax before the opening. Soon, they’re joined by today’s guests: actors Jung Woong-in (I Hear Your Voice), Kim Hee-won (Monstar), and Ahn Gil-kang (The Great Seer).
There’s a good chance these faces may be familiar to you since they’ve all played scary gangster movie roles before. They converse about the show’s concept, to which they’re told it’s mostly unpredictable…
…when the lights suddenly go out. Ruh-roh.
All we hear is the sound of a few smacks. Then Suk-jin cries: “Someone hit me! Who was it?”
Then the lights flicker back on, and Suk-jin demands to know who hit him. He asks Gil-kang, who’s sitting on the opposite couch, only to get the response: “How could I reach from over here?”
No one claims responsibility for the action, but they all know that something is definitely off. And then Jo PD says, “You’re under arrest.”
At that moment, four suspects are dragged away: Woong-in, Kwang-soo, Hee-won, and Gil-kang. Suk-jin cries that he’ll make sure that they all see justice in court.
We cut away to the courtroom where public defender Jae-suk waits patiently. The prosecution is led by none other than Jong-kook & Co. As expected, they bicker as soon as they see each other.
HA—the captions warn us that the legal terms used in this role-play court may reeeeaaaallllyyy differ from actual jargon. Prosecutor Gary shushes his client to be wary of his words and Haha fist-pumps him back, all, Dude, you totally sounded legit!
The defendants are brought in, all utterly dumbfounded. Gil-kang raises his voice when he’s accused yet again (“Have you got any evidence?!”), and it turns into a shout-fest until everyone is silenced by the judge’s entrance.
Haha: “Isn’t that Beethoven?” LOL. I admit it—Maknae FD’s blond wig is pretty hilarious.
Judge FD opens Case 157: The Case of a Head Smack in a Dark Room. As he summarizes the case, the victim, Suk-jin, sheds tears.
The Prosecution is given the floor, and they’re off to a rough start. Prosecutor Kookie stumbles over his words and even his wardrobe is criticized. Jae-suk: “Wear some pants!” Ha, the shorts do make the robes look funny.
What’s funnier is that they’re all wearing shorts (hey, it’s summer!). Jae-suk: “Are you part of a chorus?” Puhahaha.
Before we end up knee-deep in courtroom drama, today’s theme is a parody of the recently-wrapped I Hear Your Voice. I never found the courtroom aspect of the drama remarkably thrilling, but I suppose it’s easier than trying to bring Su-ha’s supernatural ability to read people’s minds to life.
Anyway, back to the case. Prosecutor Kookie reads on (zzz) until the sound of a phone ringing momentarily interrupts him. He accuses all four defendants as joint offenders with a physical assault charge. Woong-in cracks a smile at this: “You’ve seen a lot of dramas.” Heh.
Jae-suk rises to defend the idea that none of his clients are at fault. Plus, everyone was equally surprised by the sudden darkness. Kwang-soo pipes up saying that you can see the innocence in everyone’s eyes.
Averting his eyes, Gary says: “I can’t look at Defendant No. 3.” It’s Gil-kang. Ha.
Prosecutor Gary starts off with Woong-in, who owns up to playing a murderer, Min Joon-gook, in the drama. The prosecution hangs on the word “murderer” as if he’s one right now, to which Woong-in protests: “I didn’t hit [Suk-jin]!”
He’s given loaded questions, like to repeat his lines in verbatim, just so that they can reel from shock. But Woong-in does them one better and levels at Suk-jin: “I’ll kill you if you lie.”
On to Hee-won, who allegedly “looks like a psychopath.” It’s a reference to his role from The Man From Nowhere where he played an evil drug lord, and the Prosecution uses the same tactic on him. When Lawyer Jae-suk rises to object, he gets shut down.
Now I’m just thinking this interrogation is just an opportunity for these actors to reenact some of their most famous lines. Hee-won complies by screaming at Gary, and it’s hilarious.
It’s Prosecutor Mung‘s (aka Ji-hyo) turn, and it’s adorable how all of the suspects turn into fanboys. Hee-won: “It’d have been nice to have her question me.” Hehe.
She shines the spotlight on Gil-kang, a former co-star from Gye Baek, telling the court on what a lethal fighter he was then. She stumbles over a legal term and belatedly realizes her mistake.
The actual term is won-go or plaintiff, which sounds just like saying “One Go!” in the card game Go-Stop. So Haha turns it to a comedic moment, and cries out, “Two Go!”
Then it’s Kwang-soo, who looks like a scared puppy as he acknowledges that he is a betrayal icon. But there’s more to it: “You’re Incriminating Kwang-soo!”
It’s not long before Haha interjects in a loud voice, which instigates another shouty match between the boys. At one point, he claims that Ji-hyo doesn’t smoke anymore, and Jae-suk defuses: “You made the right decision for your health.”
The Defense claims that the accused didn’t always have a scary personas. Aw, Hee-won gets all embarrassed before he says that he calls his girlfriend “our baby.” But the Prosecution is disinclined to believe the same of scary Gil-kang. As for Kwang-soo: “You may have to look into him.” Ha.
Jae-suk retaliates, saying the charges are fabricated from the victim. Ha, Prosecutor Haha actually starts to waver at that.
In any case, Judge FD calls for a recess, since they need evidence to continue the trial. The teams (Prosecution vs. Defense) will gain crucial clues when they win games and reconvene at a later time. Phew, I was afraid we’d spend all day in that stuffy room.
Their first game is Human Curling where the team who gets closest to the Truth Line wins. Jae-suk still claims his clients are “baby angels” or ah-gi cheon-sah. Jong-kook: “Sure it’s not ahk-eui cheon-sah [evil angel]?”
Woong-in has a fierce look of determination before he slides towards the line… and ends up in the water. HA. Then the cast gives Hee-won a pretty hard time about his bucket hat (“They’re for kids!” “The sun isn’t even out!”). I think it makes him look adorable.
He runs into Haha and then they both end up in the water. Puhaha.
Suk-jin stops well before the line, so the Defense sends Kwang-soo after him. Ha, his entire body except his foot ends up in the water. He tries to pull himself up, which gives us the return of Toad Kwang-soo. To everyone’s surprise, he manages to get back on the platform.
After a few more turns, Suk-jin is still in first place. Ji-hyo pushes Kwang-soo into the water (along with herself), and it’s up to Jae-suk to help his team. Sure enough, down goes the Prosecution.
Then Spartakooks comes charging down the lane, but Gil-kang stays put and wins the first round.
Hee-won gets defensive when “the three criminals” are up for the second round. But they all share a laugh soon afterwards because even Gil-kang used those words. That’s not a confession, right?
I love how even Gil-kang knows he’s slightly bending the rules, but he’s all Ssh! to the rest of the cast. Aww, and then Kwang-soo tries to help Ji-hyo after she falls in again, only to slip and fall in himself.
Jong-kook speeds down the lane once more. This time Gil-kang falls in, and Hee-won slides closer to the edge… and stops. Phew, that’s two pieces of evidence for the Defense.
Jae-suk talks to his clients in the car, who all claim that Suk-jin is making it up. The bumpy ride starts to get to them, so they teasingly ask, “What should we do [about Jae-suk]?” Gulp.
I’m sure the silence that follows doesn’t help, and the darkened interior of the car makes our three guests look even more ominous. Eeek.
Everyone receives a flashlight once they arrive at the next location. Here, they’ll complete mini-missions in the town and try to be the first ones back. Didn’t we play this game when Kim Soo-hyun was here?
They’re sent out with instructions to wear pants (without using their hands), which gives us a hilarious sight gag as the cast tries to help each other out. Breathless, Haha advises the suspects to turn themselves in already while Suk-jin comes across a grandma’s actual clothes. Ha.
Hee-won is nice enough to help Haha, who immediately abandons him, leaving the man to struggle alone. Welcome to variety!
Jae-suk and Woong-in are the first ones back, and I get a kick at how the rest of them all gape, “Oh, you’re back already?” Then Gil-kang trudges back barefoot, and poor Hee-won is still trying to pull the damned pants on.
After Maknae FD owns up to his mistake that only one person (Jae-suk), not two, will pass this round, Woong-in actually looks like he’s going to flip his lid. “I’m going to kill you if you take off your wig.”
Hee-won is red in the face and sweating by the time he makes it back. Turns out he used the same help-me-and-run tactic on Gary. Oh how quickly they learn that you need betrayal to survive in varietyland.
Gosh, I really have to wonder if our guests will be okay. Even though they’re sweatin’, they all head out anyway for their second task.
OMG, I totally jumped when Jong-kook uncovers a well and finds a staff member dressed in white pop out. They’re dead-ends, but Gary finds a real one and sllooowly walks back carefully balancing the plate on his head.
Haha keeps annoying poor Hee-won to stall him. Hee-won squeaks back like a kid being teased in a schoolyard, all, Just leave me alone! Haha’s constant pestering pays off just before the finish, which forces Hee-won to trek back up the hill again.
Eventually, Hee-won and Ji-hyo are neck and neck for the second spot (Gary passed first), but he loses the ball at the last second. Aw, he looks so genuinely upset and frustrated that he might cry.
It looks like Hee-won has hit that state of exhaustion where just about anything makes sense. He suggests that the opposing teams pair up, but when that means he could take on Jong-kook, he drops the idea. Heh.
The third task is a corn-eating race. Jong-kook and Kwang-soo bicker from first bite to last step of the finish. At one point, they swipe each other’s cobs, but neither succeeds. Oh that darned one kernel!
There’s a hilarious bit when Jong-kook tries to hold Woong-in back, and his fellow defendant comes to his rescue. Then he dramatically hands off his own cob ahead to buy some time. Is he gonna make it? Cut to: one kernel of elimination.
Suk-jin’s cob comes out clean, and it looks like Hee-won has a fighting chance. That is, until Haha swipes it and tosses it. Aww, it’s just so sad that I can’t even laugh anymore. Thankfully, he recovers it and grabs second place, to his relief.
As they rest, Suk-jin tells Hee-won that he should exercise more—why look how fit he is now! And I’m with Hee-won on this when he says, “You didn’t even run all that much!”
Hee-won does, however, agree to an arm-wrestling match against Suk-jin, who’s confident that he can win. He loses the first match (“I’m a leftie!”), so the cast pit them against each other for a re-match.
Unfortunately for him, he loses the second one too. At least you can take a breather now, right?
The others are sent out to return with sparklers. When Haha comes back with a fizzled-out sparkler, Hee-won tells him, “If it went out, then get lost!”
After Gil-kang runs in with a sparkler (and promptly passes out, ha), both Haha and Woong-in nab second and third. Woong-in prides himself in the notion that he at least beat Jong-kook, only to be told that Kookie is plain terrible at these kinds of games.
So it’s down to either Jong-kook or Kwang-soo in a tissue-blowing contest. I love how something this mundane can be turned into an dramatic showdown.
But it’s over as soon as it begins as Jong-kook’s tissue falls to the ground. Which means more evidence for the Defense.
Aw man, I wish that we had gotten to see a bit of the “Identify the Liar” game (the Prosecution won), but we roll right on ahead. I should note that the pieces of evidence are bokbulbok, so the teams could choose an item that will help or hurt in court.
Back to the courtroom where the jury will arrive at a decision based upon the collected evidence. The Defense rises and presents their first piece of evidence: past clips of when Suk-jin which exemplify his fervent greed to win.
As Jae-suk gives a long-winded argument that Suk-jin even betrayed his teammates last week when he pushed everyone else into the water. Therefore, he’s making it all up. All I’m thinking is that it’s a good thing the Defense has the nation’s MC as their lawyer to make such an articulate argument.
The Prosecution retorts that Suk-jin cherishes his own body too much to inflict self-harm. Plus, he’s a terrible liar.
Jae-suk objects: “I’ve seen him lie to [his wife] for the past ten years!” Suk-jin: “That was to keep the peace!” HA.
Oh crap, the Prosecution has some damning evidence: a photo of a secret meeting between Woong-in and Jo PD. It sure looks suspicious, and Woong-in’s defense doesn’t sound too convincing.
According to the show’s history, secret meetings can only mean one thing: that the person is a spy. Then Prosecutor Gary swears in as a witness. This… is the strangest courtroom drama ever.
His argument basically boils down to: either Woong-in or Kwang-soo was in a prime position to strike Suk-jin in those few seconds of darkness. I love how Jo PD is exempt because it just wouldn’t be right for him to hit his own cast member. Pffft.
To that, Kwang-soo rises: “[Suk-jin] could have hit himself like this!” and smacks both sides of his head. HA.
The Defense argues that it isn’t enough to say that Gary felt someone move beside him. What if the head smack was a conspiracy between Jo PD and Suk-jin? It’s Jae-suk’s impressive delivery that sells the argument.
Sure enough, there’s an undisclosed photo of Suk-jin and Jo PD engaging in a different secret meeting. Hmm.
Then to drive the point home, the Defense has a warrant to look through Suk-jin’s call log which indeed shows a text between the two parties, proving that Suk-jin showed up about an hour earlier than everyone else. Jae-suk: “[They] usually don’t contact each other.”
The Prosecution still contends the other photo with Woong-in, to which Kwang-soo says someone could have been framed. When Jong-kook points out that incriminating others is Kwang-soo’s specialty, he replies, “I didn’t take the photo…”
After Suk-jin pleads his innocence, the Prosecution makes their closing arguments and name Woong-in as the culprit. To this, Lawyer Jae-suk pleads his case with the statement: “Even if you let ten criminals go free, you must not let one man suffer injustice.”
The court resumes after the jury arrives at a decision. Judge FD reviews the entire case (zzz) before declaring the verdict: Not Guilty.
The Defense celebrates, and Prosecutor Kookie says that he’ll make an appeal: “So clear your schedules!” HA.
It’s when the Prosecution is alone do they ask if Suk-jin was in the wrong. Prosecutor Mung gapes, “So it was you! I can tell from the look on your face!”
Suk-jin whines back that it wasn’t him. So what did happen?
We jump back two hours ago when the Defense was reviewing their evidence, which included a recording of when the crime took place. What they saw surprised them, but they tossed it then (“I’ll pretend I didn’t see this!”).
Now we get to see what really happened. Everything goes dark… and Woong-in rises from his seat to hit Suk-jin before sitting back down. Ack, it was you!
That devilish smile belongs to a criminal who has gone free…