Who do you call upon when you need to be rescued? Our cast teams up to face the Angel Eyes in Rescue Workers Bootcamp, where they’ll need brains and brawns to overcome all the obstacles the pros face every day. So inasmuch as today will test their stamina and endurance, the episode doesn’t skimp on the laughs. And pain. Lots of pain.
EPISODE 190. Broadcast on March 23, 2014.
On this fine early spring morning, Team Running Man wait expectantly for today’s competitors… who are not the idols they were expecting: “Is the gray-haired man a director?” “They’re not idols!”
No, this is Team Angel Eyes aka the cast of the upcoming drama (from left to right): Gong Hyung-jin, Seungri, Gu Hye-sun, Lee Sang-yoon, Kwon Hae-hyo, Kang Haneul, and Kim Ji-suk. Phew, lots of names today.
Haha says he and Seungri crossed paths (’cause they live in the same apartment complex) but ignored each other this morning. Some greetings are more pleasant than others, and Team Running Man is confident to take on their competition—why we’ve seen their virtually unbeatable teamwork before.
Goddess for Fire, Jungyi viewers will remember that Kwang-soo and Sang-yoon were former co-stars, and I suppose Kwang-soo played a prince in that drama. Jae-suk jokes, “That dumb prince?”
It’s an extension of the opening’s running joke of Young-gu (a classic village idiot character) to describe their guests’ entrance, and that Kwang-soo’s persona falls under that lineage.
Today is Hae-hyo’s first variety appearance since the 90’s, and there’s this tiny pettiness in him that makes him instantly hilarious. But it’s the mention of Ji-suk alleged heodang image he left behind years ago (for that suave actor image now) which piques my curiosity.
I love how Jae-suk is all, Yeah, we’ll see that again today. We embrace the heodangness on this show, good sir!
Today’s prize is pretty fierce: money envelopes given by both SBS drama and variety directors. Suk-jin: “I think the drama envelope has more [cash].” Haha defends that sometimes they go on trips in variety and Kwang-soo pipes in that they even went to Australia. Suk-jin grits out that was for work. Ha.
Then Jae-suk brings them down to Earth to say that the only way any of them can go on a true vacay is if this show is cut from broadcast. Eep, don’t sayyyy things like that!
Our teams will face off in a series of games in order to become the best rescue workers. Makes sense when the heroine plays one, I suppose. The winners in each round will obtain cards that will be useful for the final mission… y’all know the drill by now.
Man, I love it when our cast is one collective unit, and Team Running Man sizes up their competitors. They laugh over how a third of their challengers are similar to Kwang-soo’s abilities and worry over their black hole, Suk-jin.
Team Running Man doesn’t believe the staff for a second when they’re told that Ji-suk performs rather well. Jong-kook: “You saw what happened on X-man!” Cue clips of heodangness. Love it.
Here at the 63 building, the teams will test their teamwork in a loyalty relay race—really it’s just a nicer way to call a 60 story tower running. Everyone’s jaws drop at the realization, but they get to work strategizing right away. I love Haha’s argument: “Shouldn’t Jong-kook climb at least 20 floors?” Kwang-soo: “He could climb the entire thing by himself.”
Hyung-jin worries that mat hyung Hae-hyo might go home early due to exhaustion just from the first task. Hae-hyo seems confident that he’s at least faster than Haha… who totally hears the remark. Just remember, the cast has been together for nearly four years now!
You can practically see the fiery competitive spirit in Haneul’s eyes, so the Running Man cast shows off a bit of their skills. Aw, poor Kwang-soo is held back before he can pull off his dance moves.
We quickly check in with everyone before the start. It’s great to see Suk-jin and Haneul smiling at the start, and Ji-suk vows that he won’t show his former embarrassing variety persona. Variety gods, hear my plea! Let us see the return of Heodang Ji-suk!
For some reason Kwang-soo decides to show us a few different stair-hopping tactics. Now I’m thinking he’s going to wear himself out even before the race starts. Whoa, Jong-kook really is going to tackle nearly twenty flights of stairs.
And they’re off! Young blood Haneul frees himself from Suk-jin’s clutches and flies up the stairs. Ji-hyo is on his tail by Floor 9, however, and somewhere off-screen we hear her yell: “Move!” Hahaha.
The stairs are steeper than any of them could have anticipated, but at one point Haha overtakes Seungri. Dang, the cast really is in good shape.
Kwang-soo hears footsteps approaching, and is surprised to see Ji-suk instead of Jae-suk. He’s further surprised to be told that the baton already past him, only to learn that Ji-suk was pulling his leg.
Those test runs come back to haunt Kwang-soo as he climbs with an endless hacking cough. Then we get to see Ji-suk’s first heodang moment when the baton slips out of his hand at the exchange. Muhahaha, moar please!
Gary taunts Hyung-jin as they climb up together, that is until he sees Sang-yoon and has to step it up. Now it’s time to see just how great Jong-kook’s stamina is, and damn he catches up by Floor 52 and slips ahead.
But then Jong-kook’s weakness towards women kicks in when Hye-sun grabs the baton. She makes small talk while he can’t help but smile. That’s how they arrive at the 60th floor together and Jong-kook apologizes before grabbing the flag…
And then Jo PD announces their REAL mission. Oh that’s just cruel. They’re both given a trivia question to answer based upon the numerous paintings they ran past on their way up. Well, that explains the walkie-talkies given to the others.
Problem is, the Running Man cast is too busy checking up on each other than to tune into Jong-kook’s pleas. However, Hye-sun gets through to her castmates, who start searching immediately. What they don’t know is that both teams should be looking for the same painting hanging by the 14th floor stairwell.
It’s Ji-hyo who gets on her feet first for her team, having cottoned onto Jong-kook’s hint. But both Seungri and Haneul stop at the same painting to discover their answer, too.
The resulting chaos gets Ji-hyo mixed up, and she relays the hint before taking down Seungri. And Haneul. Basically, you don’t mess with the Ace.
Everyone is practically exhausted by now, but Team Running Man continues to relay the answer up the stairs. It takes a few tries, but Jong-kook gets it right. But there’s something about Hye-sun’s smile that suggests something else…
Everyone eventually staggers their way to the top… and then Team Angel Eyes is declared the winner. Aha, so while Jong-kook was away to yell for his teammates, the Angel Eyes team kept up their straightforward communication and Hye-sun was able to guess the right answer.
Team Angel Eyes discuss their teamwork in the van whereas the Running Man cast tries to figure out who’s to blame. The latter team has a chance to redeem themselves for their next mission: a trivia quiz.
The topics are based on occupations frequently seen in dramas, and the last team standing is the winner. Team Running Man gives their competitors some tips on how to take the blast of air (if and when they answer incorrectly) in order to make it entertaining.
Gary and Hae-hyo are up first… and the latter answers the pansori question correctly before Jo PD finishes speaking. Jae-suk steps up next and changes the topic to sports, and he raises his flag at the question (Where will the 2018 World Cup take place?) before knowing the answer.
The two men go round and round giving incorrect answers while mulling over the question aloud. Their teammates are the ones paying the price for it of course, as they get hit with blast after blast. Then Hae-hyo gets it right: “Russia.”
It’s 6:3 in favor of Team Angel Eyes when the ladies are up with a question about rescue workers. Both women blank at the question about what sign to give in order to be rescued.
They both get it wrong, and then Seungri gives us our first physical gag of the day by falling out of his chair. We get some pretty nonsensical (but hilarious) answers (“Hooray!” “X!” “11!”) and the correct answer is “V,” as in make a V-formation with your arms. Huh, you learn something new every day.
I love how Haha calls the staff out for laughing when he steps up. The reason is that Haha isn’t that confident in his knowledge of any occupation left on the board, and then Hyung-jin innocently cuts in, “What made you guys appear [on the show] today?” Jong-kook: “We have to come out every week!”
The question is: Which actor filmed the most movies showed in SBS New Years Specials over the past 20 years? Haha: “Jackie Chan.” Or in his words: “Ki-channie Hyung.” Either way, he’s right.
Haha has to beat five more challengers to win, and Jae-suk dates Hyung-jin by naming a 1989 movie he was in (Happiness Isn’t Based on Ranking). Haha is allowed to answer the four elements of theatre first (audience, stage, actor, play) and he names the first three correctly, to everyone’s surprise.
The question is whether he knows the fourth and final one, but gets it wrong and Hyung-jin swoops in for the kill. Now it’s up to Kookie to win it for their team and is faced with a medical question, which Jong-kook gets right.
Their biggest obstacle is Sang-yoon, who’s a Seoul University alumnus. Jong-kook sighs at the sciences topic, but his teammates remind him that this is the last hurdle and it’s smooth sailing from here. Meaning Ji-suk, Haneul, and Seungri: “Think of them as a heodang bobsled!”
It’s a biology question, and when asked about an insect sheds its exoskeleton, Sang-yoon quietly answers, “Metamorphosis.” Which is funny because it’s also a homonym for “pervert.”
They hear the rest of the question and a few wrong guesses (and blasts of air) later, Sang-yoon gets the right answer: “Complete metamorphosis.” Game over.
Team Running Man isn’t keen to give up that easily, so they suggest a Ji-suk versus Kwang-soo showdown. And while they’re making demands, Hyung-jin suggests that Jong-kook get down on his knees, something easier said than done for Spartakooks. He does it.
Oh, so Ji-suk is a certified teacher and Jong-kook warns that Kwang-soo could end up crawling home on his knees if he loses. Yikes.
And even before they hear the entire question, both Kwang-soo and Ji-suk start calling out foods: “Potato.” “Two boiled eggs.” “Three fried eggs!” “Two potatoes and three eggs.” Puhahaha.
The question calls for a musical instrument, and when Kwang-soo answers incorrectly, Ji-suk swoops in to get it right. Guess who’s going home on his knees.
After (literally) eating up the mission card, Team Running Man contemplates what their next mission might be. In the other van, Sang-yoon regales his teammates with the story of how his skin practically glowed the day after enduring the painful acupuncture mat game.
And whaddayknow—that’s exactly what it is. Wow, the staff really upped the ante with this Acupuncture Mat Wrestling game. The socks do little apart from keeping their feet warm, and the Running Man cast complains that the pain is pretty much the same.
All I hear are cries of pain… due to the mat, not the pushing or shoving. After the Running Man cast loses Jae-suk, they notice tears (of pain!) welling up in Seungri’s eyes.
Both sides approach with caution, shouting at each other instead. A couple of fallen members later, it looks like they’re about to lose Gary, so Jong-kook charges on ahead, taking as many down as he can.
The damage leaves two Team Angel Eyes members left standing, but then Hae-hyo knocks Kwang-soo out. The cast warns that the feeble-looking Hae-hyo was once an action star, but Jong-kook is reluctant to knock out his childhood hero.
He does anyway, which earns him a round of scolding for chucking the mat hyung, who then hilariously crawls away.
All of a sudden, the women face-off on the mat, pinning each other to the mat. And very gently, SpartAce rolls Hye-sun off the platform.
Our final mission location is an enormous set filled with various obstacles for our trained(?) rescue workers. Though it looks like Team Angel Eyes as the advantage to choose first, Suk-jin points out that tactic didn’t work out so well when they rowed across the Han River with the college students last time. (To jog your memory, the bottom two teams ended up placing first and second.)
After the teams make their choices, Jo PD explains that today’s obstacle relay race has a real-life international competition roots (Jong-kook: “Couldn’t we do a regular competition?”). Aha, so this final mission is based upon the Worlds Firefighters Games.
One of these obstacles is firewalking, where the unfortunate person must walk across barefoot. The climactic finale is a rock climbing wall where they must ring the bell.
The teams go through the motions in preparation, and there are real firefighters (and hopefully an ambulance) teaching the teams and standing by just in case anything goes wrong.
Unsure about the rock climbing wall, Kwang-soo appeals to his hyungs to switch places, only to be scolded on not packing his climbing shoes. ‘Cause every guy should have them in his rucksack don’tchaknow.
Jong-kook and Jae-suk give the giraffe a playfully hard time about it, and the conversation ends with Jae-suk suggesting that they go shopping for new shoes later. Lol.
Ji-hyo and Seungri are neck and neck at the start, and while firewalking is no easy task, both teams bears the pain. Hye-sun’s use of the fire extinguisher puts her team in the lead, but Jae-suk isn’t far behind.
Both Jong-kook and Sang-yoon climb the wall simultaneously, but it’s Jong-kook who climbs up and over first. I’m thinking he used up all his energy on his practice, and he struggles to climb over.
He eventually does, but then Hae-hyo and Ji-suk struggle with the hose. The wide spray (versus concentrated) is due to turning the hose too much beforehand. Uh oh.
But Kwang-soo is already climbing the wall by the time they regain control. Good thing that year-and-a-half of rock climbing experience is to Haneul’s advantage as he gains on Kwang-soo.
Speaking of, Kwang-soo is only an arm’s length away from the bell, but his fear of heights prevents him from grabbing it right away. Everyone waits with bated breath… and Kwang-soo rings it to win it.
Thus our Running Man cast members are our winners today, and they gape to find real money in the golden envelopes. To be honest, I was sad that the Australian special only lasted two episodes, but it seems that the show is bringing us back down under to the Gold Rush.
And if next week’s previews are any indication, we’re (hopefully) in for a jolly good time.