Running Man: Episode 159
It’s time to cool off from the heat as our cast battles it out to be the last couple standing. But with gold on the line, they’ll have to ask themselves the age-old question: Do you choose love or money? Or is it possible to have both? Perhaps maybe they need to focus on staying afloat instead.
EPISODE 159. Broadcast on August 18, 2013.
We begin at a classy outdoor party as our boys arrive dressed to impress. They grow excited about today’s Couple Race, and to help illustrate the concept, Maknae FD performs a not-a-magic doppelganger trick. Ha, his “twin” is an FD from Incarnation.
It’s time to meet today’s guests: actor Kim Kwang-kyu (I Hear Your Voice), who immediately responds to the lackluster welcome.
Older Running Man fans will recognize him from the show’s early days (Episodes 15 and 32). It still boggles my mind that Suk-jin is the hyung by a year. Kwang-kyu explains his presence as “young blood.” Ha.
There are a lot of names to get through today, so we barrel ahead with entertainer Fujita Sayuri aka Sayuri, whose 4D personality is apparent as soon as she walks in. Her partner Haha gawks, “She walks like this! *waddle*”
She admits that she had someone else is mind as a partner—Jong-kook. The reason cracks me up: “He’s lovable from head to toe!” HA, they’re lyrics from his former hit “Lovable.”
Then we’re introduced to returning guest and Suk-jin’s longtime friend Park Sang-myun. He says he’s the same age as Kwang-kyu, and that fact gives mat-hyung Suk-jin pause. Gah, this is where the age hierarchy thing gets hazy.
Basically, the order goes: Suk-jin (1966), Kwang-kyu (1967), and Sang-myun (1968). Suk-jin and Sang-myun call each other friends, and speak in banmal to each other. Sang-myun is an “early 68” which puts him close to the same year as Kwang-kyu. I’m getting flashbacks to the Tae-woong, Seon-kyun, and Su-geun ordeal in 1N2D.
We move on to Kwang-soo’s partner: singer John Park. Jong-kook calls out: “He’s another Kwang-soo!” Aw, and John says he really wanted to be paired with Kwang-soo.
When the cast asks why, John deadpans: “Why, is that wrong?” Omg, are you a fanboy? That’d be awesome. And then he links arms with Kwang-soo. Adorable.
Yessssss, the Monday Couple is paired together today! Ji-hyo: “You should be honored! It’s a Tuesday!” Hee.
Jong-kook’s partner is revealed to be singer-actress Kim Ye-rim. The others complain how Jong-kook lucked out today, and immediately tease him for his every move.
But that’s not all; they’re joined by real-life couple Jo Jung-chi and Jung In, who currently appear on We Got Married. They receive an initial flat response, and they get awkward-embarrassed when Ji-hyo calls out that they should hold hands.
Singer Jung In doesn’t seem too excited to be coupled with her singer-songwriter beau today. She names Kwang-soo as her first choice (he beams), which is when John stakes his claim and links arms again. Hahaha.
Does anyone else get the feeling that today’s group of guests are especially eclectic in their personalities? Jae-suk calls it “surreal,” but we’ll see how it shakes out.
Today’s theme is Jjak, 1% of Friendship, and the couples ooh and ahh over their legitimate gold bars. So they’re all ears as Jo PD explains how they’ll gain more through today’s games or steal them from the other couples. They’re responsible for their own gold, and the couple with the most bars will be declared our winners.
In the car, Jung-chi remarks that Ye-rim is the breadwinner for her company (her CEO is singer Yoon Jong-shin). Kwang-kyu says it’s the same with him, and Jung-chi says, “You all must eat a little then.”
Meanwhile, John comments on how he feels a camaraderie with Kwang-soo because he also shares a babo (“idiot”) image. Kwang-soo is left flabbergasted at that statement, and John follows up with: “But aren’t you kinda like that anyway?”
They settle for the friendlier term heodang (hard-working but with a few flaws) and tell themselves that they’re just different from everyone else. John’s monotonous delivery is pretty hilarious, and he adds: “If we don’t win, we just won’t contact each other [afterwards].”
Sayuri says that she’d like to get married soon, and doesn’t hesitate to mention Jong-kook’s name. So Haha fills her in on Jong-kook’s usual type: modest and lady-like.
Everyone piles into a cabin when they arrive, and I love how Gary jokes: “We don’t have our own room?” Then Sayuri comments that Sang-myun’s rubber duckie shirt makes him look like a duck restaurant owner.
Somehow they fit everyone in, and they’re so caught up in their conversation (about how John looks like the handsome babo) that they have no idea that the staff is at work setting up mats outside.
Haha tries to play matchmaker for his friend with Jong-kook. Sayuri even appeals to his health fanatic side: “Do you want to eat chicken breast together? Shall we drink protein [shakes] together?” HA, what a perfect pick-up line for Spartakooks.
They’re suddenly interrupted by the sound of music to signal their first game. It’s basically survival of the fittest as the couples try to push each other out of the room whenever the music cuts out.
Commence dance-off! Sayuri is so shameless in the entertaining way, so I can see how she thrives in variety. Although by far my favorite is our newly-instated Babo Brothers as John sidles up to Kwang-soo, making him that much more uncomfortable.
The whistle blows and madness ensues. It looks like Kwang-soo is in danger, but then Jae-suk is pushed out the door. He swings around like Spiderman, but it isn’t long before the others free his grip. Defenseless, Kwang-kyu joins him.
Thus Jae-suk is subjected to act as MC as the rest climb into the next party room, complete with disco ball. Kwang-kyu says that he’d really like Jong-kook to be eliminated, but wants his partner Ye-rim to stay because “she’s pretty.”
They break it down on the dance floor. Did… Sang-myun just bust a breakdance move? HA. Just when they grow comfortable to the music, the whistle blows. It doesn’t look good for the Babo Brothers because everyone turns to them for elimination.
John falls out easily enough, but Kwang-soo holds onto Sang-myun for dear life. But then Sang-myun falls backwards which leads to a butt-to-face fall. Owww.
We skip ahead after the Jung-Jung couple is eliminated, and now this game has turned into a mini talk show. Jae-suk enjoys his power as MC over the remaining couples, making them do calisthenics just because he can. Suffice it to say, they’re not happy about it.
Two couples must go this round, and Suk-jin and Sang-myun come tumbling out. Then Gary and Haha fall out, and Sayuri takes on Jong-kook on her own. An excuse for skinship, perhaps?
Jong-kook steps out so the ladies can duke it out, and poor Ye-rim doesn’t even stand a chance against the Ace and Sayuri.
It’s the final round between Sayuri and Haha versus the Monday Couple as they all dance to a Turbo song. HA, and Jong-kook is singing it himself outside. Daebak.
The music cuts out again, and I find it hilarious that Haha and Gary can’t overpower each other. But then, Ji-hyo grabs Haha’s leg, and after some more struggle, he falls out.
It’s raining pretty heavily now, and the Monday Couple push Sayuri out for the win. The Monday Couple pick up two more gold bars, and the Haha-Sayuri couple pick up one.
Jae-suk sighs at the sight of Jung-chi and Jung In bickering in the car like any normal couple. But soon the spotlight shines on Kwang-kyu, who’s unmarried, and Jung-chi jokes to his sunbae that it’s happier when you’re taken.
The cast exchanges a few jokes before their second game, like how Sang-myun squints his eyes because Kwang-kyu’s receding hairline reflects the light. Jae-suk adds that they were electrocuted by lightning earlier.
Jae-suk stops to check if John has any trouble with the jokes (John is Korean-American and spent most of his life in the States). John nods that he understands: “I’m not that dumb.”
It’s an all-kill water quiz where the last couple standing wins. Jae-suk and Kwang-kyu are pitted against Suk-jin and Sang-myun in the first round, who seem confident about their first question.
But then they grow nervous when the other teams volunteer to shoot the water guns at them should they answer incorrectly. They do, and the others let them have it. HA.
At one point, Haha even shoots water at Kwang-kyu’s bald head. Round and round they go, calling out wrong answers left and right. Eventually, Jae-suk answers correctly.
Later, Haha and Sayuri face the Babo Brothers. Kwang-soo gets red in the face at the question: “In Europe, if you let a woman touch your… [it once meant you gave her your consent for love]?” Kwang-soo gets hit with a jet of water to get his mind out of the gutter. Hee.
I love how Jo PD stops to burst in laughter just thinking about the moment again. He eventually finishes the question, and both teams call out random body parts: “Armpit!” “Nostril!” John gets it right (“Mustache”).
The following question asks for a proverb that encapsulates when you miss someone you can’t sleep. Gary gets it right, but the others point out that he mumbled out his answer. They ask him to repeat it, and he gets it wrong.
The Babo Brothers are on a roll now, and Jung-chi sighs how sad it would be if they lost in this final round after all of that effort.
Ooh, this is an interesting question: “If female students hate being serenaded to Lim Jae-bum’s ‘Confession’ in noraebang, then what do male students hate to hear?” Kwang-soo: “Pippi Longstocking’s ‘I like Strawberries’!”
For a minute there, I thought that Kwang-soo meant the iconic cartoon character. Turns out he’s referring to a band.
Jung-chi is HILARIOUS. He names a few girl group songs and starts dancing to them right then and there. His SISTAR19’s “Gone Not Around Any Longer” dance cracks me up. The answer is IU’s “Good Day,” and now I’m stuck imagining a plethora of girls trying to hit those insane high notes
Surprisingly, Kwang-soo gets the next question right, and the Babo Brothers celebrate: “We’re the smartest [out of all of you] you idiots!”
After they collect their gold, Jong-kook mentions that their gold went missing. Ruh-oh. To make matters worse, Jo PD says that he asked the staff, but none of them has seen it.
So Jong-kook takes it up with the cast, and wonders if he should take it to court then. Cue Kwang-kyu, who played a judge in I Hear Your Voice. Hahaha.
They temporarily put those worries aside for the next game. Here, they’ll construct their own boats out of cardboard boxes and race to the finish. Suk-jin points to his partner: “I’ll sink with him in the boat!”
Everyone gets to work to build their own creation. That is, everyone apart from the Babo Brothers, who look completely lost. The Monday Couple decides to go with a raft idea, which Suk-jin seems eager to borrow.
I suppose it’s not as bad as Jae-suk and Kwang-kyu, who have a sad piece of tape attached to their box. They argue over whether it will sink (Jae-suk) or not (Kwang-kyu), and a snippet shows us that that may be the least of their problems.
Jung-chi has carefully calculated his design so that it resembles an actual boat. Aw, it’s sweet to see how concerned he is for Jung In when she accidentally hits her head.
It’s a different story between Jae-suk and Kwang-kyu of course as they continue to bicker about what will keep their boat afloat. They do come together to potentially sabotage other couples’ boats, but don’t get a chance.
Ha, did Sang-myun and Suk-jin make a sidecar for a boat? I like how everyone has fairly unique designs, since it makes it all the more entertaining for us as viewers to see what will succeed or not.
Right now, my money’s on Jung-chi and Jung In. Jae-suk [on their design]: “It’s a coffin, hyung!”
It’s time to put their hard work to the test. We start out with Suk-jin and Sang-myun’s sidecar boat, and surprisingly, it floats… and then we see that they’re still on the steps. Hee.
It still manages to float somehow, and then they both yell out: “The water’s leaking in!” They get a slow start, but eventually start moving, and make it to the finish line.
As expected, everyone praises Jung-chi’s boat which floats just fine. The solid construction enables him to travel quickly down the pool (as the couple face each other, aw), and they have a mini-date as they row back to the other end of the pool.
Later on, it’s Jae-suk and Kwang-kyu’s turn with their
casket—I mean boat which starts to shake as soon as they get in. And then, Jae-suk’s oar breaks.
Their boat really does look like it’s going to capsize any second now, and Jae-suk quips: “Hyung, this really must be our coffin.”
Whoa, they fall into a rhythm right from the start, and their boat zooms down the pool. Hee, is it a survival instinct kicking in? They pass the finish line in what seems like record time and celebrate… by falling into the pool. Not a moment too soon!
Then we have the Monday Couple whose raft works out pretty well. I like these side-by-side comparisons we’re getting with different teams, which gives us a picture as to how fast they’re going. At one point, we can’t even see the Babo Brothers onscreen.
Cut to: Babo Brothers helplessly trying to row away from the wall. HA. They end up spinning aimlessly in the water until they finally row themselves to the finish, and end up in 6th place. John: “We’re not dead last!”
The top three teams all come in under a minute. The difference between the Jung-Jung couple and Monday Couple is mere hundredths of a second.
And what of Jae-suk and Kwang-kyu? 42.25 seconds. Daebak.
Slightly bitter, Gary yells, “They dragged out a refrigerator box and won with it!”
Every couple apart from Jong-kook and Ye-rim has a small pile of gold now, and Jong-kook demands that the burglar return it. Haha asks what he’ll do if it’s Kwang-kyu, but age hierarchy means nothing in front of the law.
Which is when they notice the extra gold bar in Jung In’s bag. “They said we can steal them [from each other]!” Hahaha, well she’s not wrong.
Jung-chi: “She even threw out Ye-rim’s bag in the trash.” Gotta get rid of the evidence, right? His blood boiling, Jong-kook shouts: “Then I can just steal them, can I?” Uh-oh, I don’t know if any of you want to stand a fight against Spartakooks.
The Monday Couple and Jung-chi and Jung In are joint winners, and Jo PD has another mission planned for them. Gary: “What do you expect us to do with these scammers?” Heh.
The others are forced to give up their gold, to much outcry. Then Jo PD presents the couples with a choice: Do they choose the gold or their partner? If both choose jjak, then they’ll leave with love; if both choose gold, they’ll forfeit the lot; if they choose differently, then the one who chose gold will take the lot. Oooh.
Jong-kook suggests an option that allows the others to divide the gold amongst themselves if both parties are greedy and choose gold. Jo PD grants it. They all chant: “Gold! Gold!”
The Monday Couple is up first… and Gary chooses jjak. Eee! His reason: “If Ji-hyo chooses gold, then I can get it from her.” Then Ji-hyo does the sketchbook confession from Love Actually… and chooses Gary. AHHHH!!!!
Aww, Gary looks totally surprised, and then he barks: “Why didn’t you choose the gold?” Ha, these two.
Then our Jung-Jung couple is up, and Jung-chi chooses gold. Everyone waits with anticipation for Jung In’s answer… is jjak. They win their loot of four gold bars.
But then Jo PD reveals that the best prize is if both parties chose jjak. So the Monday Couple doubles their loot, making them rich on love and gold. Monday Couple for the win!