Running Man: Episode 257
Korean Drama Reactions & Reviews | July 30, 2015 | 304 viewed
It’s that time of the year where the strong will go up against the strongest in a game of mastery. Our cast will need the help of their heroes and their subsequent superpowers to try and come out on top this week. Becoming a master at anything takes lots of hard work, drive, and passion, but winning here will require their wits, strength, and brains.
EPISODE 257. Broadcast on July 26, 2015.
It’s a hot summer a hot hot summer day where our cast will be paired with today’s heroes—er, guests: professional basketball player Hyun Joo-yeob, retired soccer player Song Jong-kook, volleyball player Kim Yeon-kyung, former rhythmic gymnast now professional bowling player Shin Soo-ji, and former Starcraft player Hong Jin-ho.
However, since we’re two guests short of an even 1:1, Gary and Suk-jin are today’s guy-guy pairing. Needless to say, they’re looking disappointed (“Why is Suk-jin my hero?!”). Suk-jin asks for a high-five from Yeon-kyung, which leaves him with a few bruised finger bones.
Today marks the 4th Strongest Running Man Games using the hero’s “special powers” in a nametag ripping mission to be the last team standing. Those powers are currently inactive, and even the guests don’t even know what those might be. So it’s up to them to find the masters who will help them uncover these hidden abilities.
Jae-suk and Yeon-kyung arrive at their first stately house, home of professional baduk master Jo Hoon-hyun. Over at a cafe, webtoon artist Jo Seok greets Kwang-soo and Jin-ho, while top profiler Pyo Chang-won sits Suk-jin and Gary down.
The graceful pansori singer Song So-hee greets Jong-kook and Soo-ji, while Ji-hyo is surprised to see Chef Mihal Ashminov. Rounding out the masters is sound engineer Professor Bae Myung-jin.
Jae-suk is hesitant when told to win at least one match against the master. But these challenges aren’t just baduk matches, but rather involve baduk pieces like baduk jacks.
It appears the other games are just as loosely related to the master’s fields of knowledge as well. Given three minutes to draw ten images, the team whose drawings get most recognized wins.
Kwang-soo keeps badgering Jin-ho with questions about trademark features to the animals they’re supposed to be drawing, to the latter’s frustration. At the end, Jo Seok’s drawings are simple but recognizable, especially compared to Kwang-soo and Jin-ho’s drawings.
Meanwhile, Jong-kook and Soo-ji are left to sing children songs against their master. Soo-ji doesn’t know their selection, and then raises her leg so that the lid crashing above their heads (for each time they get it wrong) hits her leg, not her noggin’.
Haha and Joo-yeob must find a person whose voice is quite similar to the recording they hear. Astounded by the absurd concept, Joo-yeob says the cast and crew must not get along.
Basically they just need to find someone who can imitate the voice, then Haha and Joo-yeob venture out onto campus to find anyone who can do an imitation of actor Yoon Moon-shik. Haha pits two competitors against one another, and it just gets weirdly funnier each time they say the phrase.
Unfortunately they also have to capture the mannerisms in the voice as well as a similar intonation. So at one point, when a possible Kim Jong-kook imitator sings for them, Haha asks if he’s only good at playing the guitar.
Over at the restaurant, Ji-hyo and Song Jong-kook are told to try and best the chef in identifying three foods blindfolded and without their sense of smell. Chef Mihal guesses correctly in the first round without breaking a sweat.
In that darkened room, Suk-jin and Gary will be playing a card game where they’ll discard matching cards. The one left with the “thief” card in the end, loses. Neither Suk-jin nor Gary can trust the master to deal the cards, and the latter praises their sense of doubt.
Gary’s the one starting out with the Thief card, and Profiler Pyo supposes that that person will try to place that card towards the middle so that it’s easy to take… just as Gary moves that card to the middle. Hahaha.
He also gets edgy when Suk-jin tries to engage the profiler in a battle of wits, telling him that it’s pointless. Profiler Pyo keeps a sharp eye out, noting that Gary’s eyes keep shifting to the left. Gary: “I did that even when I had a girlfriend!”
After teasing him about the sides, the profiler goes straight for the middle and picks the Thief card. Whoops, so much for decades of forensic psychoanalyzation.
Supposing that the profiler will do the exact opposite of his words, Suk-jin sees him nod when hovering over the middle. We then skip ahead to when all of them have two cards each (plus one for Profiler Pyo, who still hasn’t managed to rid himself of the Thief card).
Suk-jin happens to choose the right card, which also allows Gary to pick up the card he needs. That ultimately means Profiler Pyo has lost the game.
Back at Master Jo’s place, the man fans himself faster each time Yeon-kyung catches the pieces. She gets through the first four rounds, but fails in catching all five pieces. He can feel his blood rising with each failed attempt, contrary to the “indifference” written on his fan.
He asks his lovely wife to help him out (she’d been adorably spying on their game), and her quick hands pick up the pieces easily. But in the end, Jae-suk catches all three pieces to best the couple.
Outside the cafe, Kwang-soo and Jin-ho pull aside a passersby to guess the various sports drawings. She guesses 8 out of 10. The student artist Jo Seok ends up with halts at the weightlifting category, but only ultimately guesses six.
Elsewhere, Soo-ji switches in after Jong-kook keeps getting confused over the similarly-sounding melodies. Haha and Joo-yeob succeed at their mission, as well as the other teams, and now they all have their superpowers back.
Which brings us to the final mission, where each of our cast members enter the arena to call upon their superheroes. Of course Haha trips up over the word “hero” for “soul,” and Taek PD has to interrupt the epic moment to correct him.
Gary: “But do you know anything about the rules of this game, hyung?” Suk-jin: “No.” Hahaha.
The rules are simple: the cast members will utilize their heroes’ powers to tear off the other Running Man member’s nametags. The guests, I mean, heroes cannot be eliminated and cannot tear off the cast members’ nametags, which frankly seems like sapping the fun out of this game for them.
Furthermore, the cast members are linked to their heroes—so if they do, so do their heroes. Time to listen to their powers: For Yeon-kyung, she must find her golden glove, place it on the target’s back and call out their name. That nametag will be placed on Jae-suk for one minute, in which time they must have someone else tear off that nametag. Only when there are two teams left can Jae-suk tear off that nametag himself.
Ji-hyo and Song Jong-kook will hunt down a red card, which they’ll use to place on another member’s foot. Doing so will freeze the opposing hero for fifteen minutes. Kwang-soo and Jin-ho must find the “ctrl + alt+ delete” keys, and track down the one computer that accepts the command of typing in someone’s name to eliminate them.
For Jong-kook and Soo-ji, they can use up to 10 “ribbon” chances that will allow them to escape safely from their captors. And when Taek PD means they won’t be “seen or heard,” Jong-kook knows that means their captors will just be playing along.
Suk-jin and Gary have a nifty power to themselves too: they can use a “fart bomb” to erase people’s short-term memories and jump back in time. So if Gary is eliminated, they can use the bomb to go back to the moments before his elimination. Suk-jin: “Give us about 20,000 of those!”
Haha and Joo-yeob can switch nametags up to three times for a time limit of three minutes each, but that puts Joo-yeob at risk. Joo-yeob: “You can’t even go to the bathroom in that time!”
And this switch doesn’t come for free: the two must do an embarrassing dance to call upon the switch. When Haha does the SISTAR’s “Shake It” dance, Joo-yeob warns him to be articulate (because it could easily be misheard as ssekki or “jerk”).
The teams head out to track down the cases containing their powers, but they keep discovering the wrong-colored cases. Kwang-soo and Jin-ho get offended when Jae-suk infers that they’re the weakest team here. When Jin-ho offers to use his keyboard as a weapon, Jae-suk says he’ll replace those missing keys with Jin-ho’s teeth.
Jae-suk adds that Yeon-kyung’s spike could be enough force to switch out Kwang-soo’s teeth for Jin-ho’s. This bluff battle ends with Kwang-soo and Jin-ho trying to show off their spiking skills, only for Kwang-soo to involuntarily flinch when Yeon-kyung flies into the air.
After tossing back and forth about each other’s powers, Song Jong-kook makes everyone jump when he blows his whistles. He threatens not to make him blow that whistle another time.
Having way too much fun, Song Jong-kook takes on Kwang-soo and Jin-ho next, who start running as soon as he blows the whistle. Really half the fun comes from tapping into people’s fears and whipping out an instrument the others have no idea how one will use it, like how Jin-ho starts chasing Haha and Joo-yeob while trying to attach the alt key.
And when they finally do, both Jin-ho and Kwang-soo jump back at the “power.” Hahaha. Haha and Joo-yeob stop in their tracks when they see a few teams converse in the hallway. He wonders if they should take the opportunity, and then the big man starts shaking his butt in place. Heee.
Now switched, the two head out, keeping their nametags hidden. Joo-yeob reaches over to Jae-suk’s nametag but fails to tear it off. They play off the moment lightheartedly, and then Joo-yeob leans over… to massage Jae-suk’s shoulder.
A little later, Haha grabs hold of Suk-jin so that Joo-yeob can target Gary. It doesn’t quite register to Gary until it’s too late and the speakers announce his elimination. Upon learning the truth, Gary lets his jaw drop in awe…
… and Suk-jin grabs a fart bomb. O you know it’s coming. As the putrid smell fills the air, the clocks turn back by a few minutes. But doing so also uses up Haha and Joo-yeob’s available three minutes.
After discovering all three keys, Kwang-soo and Jin-ho start searching for the computer. They make an immediate U-turn upon seeing Jong-kook and plead for mercy. Jong-kook leads them to the exact computer they need and even takes out their keyboard for them.
When they hesitate, Jong-kook grabs Kwang-soo’s back threateningly. Ha, Jin-ho’s hand legit trembles as he reaches to connect the keyboard. Jong-kook: “You think it’ll be faster for you to write ‘Kim Jong-kook’ or for me to eliminate Kwang-soo?”
Yeon-kyung puts on the golden glove and hides, but she gets discovered by two other teams. She smacks Haha’s back to duplicate his name and Jae-suk clamors for Ji-hyo to help him out.
Ji-hyo does, and a bewildered Haha has no idea why he’s been eliminated. Back at the computer, the teams hear of Haha’s elimination—good thing they didn’t finish typing out his name. So naturally, Gary would be the next possible target.
At the same time, Song Jong-kook uses the red card on Gary and bends down to grab his foot. He manages to do it to send Suk-jin away, and then Gary willingly lets Ji-hyo rip off his nametag, since he figures he can just use a fart bomb.
Problem is, with Suk-jin temporarily out, so is the usage of his powers. And so Ji-hyo tears off that nametag off of a crying Gary.
Kwang-soo and Jin-ho gets the chills once they hear of Gary’s announcement. Jae-suk arrives just as Jin-ho starts typing his name, so he pulls him away. They compromise by agreeing to send Ji-hyo away, but that’s when Kwang-soo uses his tongue to point it at Jong-kook.
So Jin-ho starts typing out Jong-kook’s name but has to try again multiple times to account for his typos. In the end, he types out Ji-hyo’s name and presses the Enter key.
With three teams left in the game, Jin-ho throws himself in as the sacrificial lamb to hold onto Jong-kook. As Yeon-kyung reaches over to Jong-kook’s back, Soo-ji uses that ribbon chance.
She and Jong-kook immediately teleport to a safe location, and Kwang-soo and Jin-ho hurry to find more keys. The hunt is on with Jae-suk and Yeon-kyung helping them out. They run back to the room before Jong-kook arrives, but then unintentionally locking Jae-suk and Yeon-kyung out.
Realizing that they could just wait it out until the other two teams eliminate one another, Jin-ho doesn’t finish out the sequence to eliminate Jong-kook. “I don’t have anything scheduled tomorrow!” he adds. Just outside the door, Jae-suk turns to Jong-kook for help
Kwang-soo’s feeling pretty anxious though, mostly because he has to pee. Jin-ho tells him to use the empty bottle sitting next to him. It’s eerily silent outside, and as soon as Jin-ho cracks open the door, Jong-kook jumps to try and get inside.
It’s like a moment straight out of a horror movie, and Kwang-soo tells him to finish the sequence. Jin-ho hurries over and calls it out to eliminate him. Then Jin-ho charges into Yeon-kyung so that Kwang-soo can flee to the bathroom.
She’s waiting for him as soon as he exits, and Kwang-soo calls out for Jin-ho. Too bad he’s preoccupied at the moment, unable to get out of Jae-suk’s clutches. She smacks his back so that Kwang-soo’s nametag duplicates onto Jae-suk’s back.
So then Jae-suk reaches behind his back to eliminate Kwang-soo and secure the win. And for Jin-ho, the man who’s always been known to come in second place, this day is no different. So close and yet so far.
Tags Lee Kwang Soo; Kang Gary; Kim Jong Kook; Ha Dong Hoon (Ha Ha); Ji Suk Jin; Song Ji Hyo; So Ji Sub;
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