Episode 325: Deficiency Trip: November 13, 2016
Today’s episode starts with a review of last week where the <Running Man> crew said goodbye to Gary. Then there’s a chyron that reads, “You thought we’d part ways with Gary that cleanly?”
The rest of the MCs meet up at Dosan Park in Gangnam, Seoul. They comment on the previews at the end of last week’s episode that mentioned that this wasn’t the end of Gary. Does that mean Gary’s coming back? Actually, this is just a guest appearance, which means that he doesn’t get paid. Ha!
Yoo Jae-suk walks in with a bag, flag, and speakerphone. He looks like some kind of low budget tour guide. Yoo Jae-suk will be giving a tour of Apgujeong which is a ritzy neighborhood in Gangnam. Lee Kwang-soo jokingly asks if Gary is hiding in that bag, but it just contains jackets with nametags for each team member.
Now that Gary is gone, they feel like something’s missing, so the PD sends them go on a “Deficiency Trip” to fill up that void in their hearts.
It’s a six part course that they have to finish in six hours. The trip will consist of
- Course 1: Chinese Restaurant – a delicious lunch
- Course 2: Cafe – a sweet dessert
- Course 3: Karaoke – fun singing
- Course 4: Photo Zone – souvenir photos
- Course 5: Han River – riding bikes
- Course 6: Shopping – buying souvenirs
Most of these are expensive activities that Yoo Jae-suk couldn’t do when he was poor and struggling. They will get a punishment for each mission they fail to accomplish within the allotted six hours. For the trip, they will be given a stipend, phone, and vehicle. However, because it’s called the “Deficiency Trip,” they only have
- 36,180 won (2016 Korean minimum wage x 6 hours)
- 7% battery life on their cellphone
- low gas
Since the stipend is so low, there will be a mission at each location for a chance to save money. The PD confiscates everyone’s wallets and cellphones.
The MCs get in their van and notice that they really don’t have much gas left. The cellphone battery is down to 6%, so they decide to turn it off, but not before turning on the battery save mode and lowering the screen brightness all the way down. That’s pretty smart.
On their first course at a Chinese restaurant, there are two menus labelled “A” and “B.” After playing rock–paper–scissors, Ji Suk-jin wins and chooses to go with “A” which is a black bean noodles, spicy seafood noodles, and sweet and sour pork set for 29,000 won. Keep in mind that 1,000 won is approximately 1 USD, so that’s a pretty reasonable price under normal circumstances.
Yoo Jae-suk and Ji Suk-jin reminisce on how they ate here back when they lived in the poor district of Suyu, on the other side of the Han River. Yoo Jae-suk and Ji Suk-jin recognize the manager of the restaurant who’s worked there for 31 years. He was a waiter back then, but he’s been promoted since. Back then Yoo Jae-suk used to order two servings of food for four people.
There’s not enough food for six people, so they fight over who gets to eat what. They decide to order a bowl of rice (1,000 won) to mix with the leftover black bean sauce since they’re still hungry.
Now that they’re done eating, it’s time for a mission. The PD asks them if they feel something’s missing since they’re used to seven members. They comment that Gary really liked black bean noodles.
The PD announces that they have a 50% discount chance. Their mission is to call Gary and get him to say the words, “I want to film.” They have just one minute for the call. Yoo Jae-suk rings Gary and tries to trick him into thinking Seolhyun of AOA is there. Song Ji-hyo pretends to be Seolhyun, but sounds nothing like her. The MCs use up all their time yelling at Song Ji-hyo.
The PD gives them another chance if they give up a personal item. Kim Jong-kook volunteers his jacket. The second time around, Yoo Jae-suk says, “Gary, I want to film with you.” Gary responds, “I want to film with you too.” Success! They hang up as soon as he says it because they have to conserve every bit of battery.
It’s another 3,000 won for the valet parking, and unfortunately it seems like they’ll be paying that much at every stop, because that’s how parking usually works in Apgujeong.
Course two is a cafe. Once they arrive, they have to choose seat “A” or “B.” They go with “A” which is a crepe cake and two iced Americanos that cost 19,000 won. That’s more money than they have. Option “B” is cheaper but it’s just an iced Americano and cafe latte.
Once again, the MCs fight over the food since the six of them have to share a single slice of cake. Lee Kwang-soo grabs the plate and licks it clean. Song Ji-hyo and Ji Suk-jin don’t realize that and scrape out the leftover frosting. Gross.
The 50% discount mission is another call to Gary. However, this time, they have to do a speed quiz and get Gary to guess six words in one minute. The first few are Berlin, Nairobi, and Cairo. Gary is bad at geography. He doesn’t know the capitals of Kenya or Egypt, so they only get to three. They hang up quickly to conserve, but Gary calls them back. Aw. It looks like he misses them too.
After Yoo Jae-suk gives up his jacket, they get another chance. This time it’s foods like aglio olio pasta, cesar salad, and margarita pizza. Fail again. Haha gives up his jacket for another chance. The third round is cellophane noodles, carbonara spaghetti, spicy stuffed cucumber, pepper cellophance noodles, Chungmu kimbap, yakgwa, and sweet rice drink. Three time’s the charm and they only have to pay 9,500 won. After 3,000 won more for valet parking, they have 5,680 won left.
There is just 10 km worth of gas left, so Ji Suk-jin says he knows a cheap place with gas. The only problem is that it’s in the suburbs.
The third course is the karaoke. This place at least has a parking lot instead of valet parking. They need to get a combined total of 1,000 points in order to move on to the fourth course. It costs 5,000 won for the first 30 minutes and 3,000 won for each additional half hour.
Here they get a “part-timer chance” which is where one member can run over to Gary’s studio, sing a line of a song and get Gary to finish it. For each completed mission, they get an extra 2,000 won. With six members, that means they’ll be able to earn up to 12,000 won.
Ji Suk-jin runs over to Gary’s studio first. “It’s Monday Gary, we need to film.”
Gary, “But I already finished last week.”
Ji Suk-jin, “Yeah, but the rest of us still need to film. You’re still in our hearts.”
Gary, “I need to work.”
Ji Suk-jin, “We’re going to keep coming.”
Haha runs over next. So far they have 549 points with seven minutes left.
Lee Kwang-soo runs over to Gary’s studio. He sings a Leessang song, “Your Scent,” but Gary can’t remember the lyrics. Flabbergasted, Lee Kwang-soo gives up one of his sneakers to get another chance. This time he goes with the Korean national anthem, so that there’s no chance Gary won’t know it. As soon as Gary get it, Lee Kwang-soo smacks him for not getting the song lyrics right on the first try.
Meanwhile at the karaoke, they have 946 points which is almost there, but not quite, so they have to add another 30 minutes of time for 3,000 won.
As for Gary, Kim Jong-kook goes with his song, “Lovable.” Yoo Jae-suk gets his song in too.
Song Ji-hyo is the last to run over to the studio. She says she’s embarrassed since she cried so much last time, and had even texted Gary “I miss you.” She gives Gary a quick hug and asks for money. Gary gives her 5,000 won and jokes that if she’s going to be so poor/pitiful like that she should just get married to him. She sings “The Girl Who Can’t Breakup and the Guy Who Can’t Leave.” How appropriate.
They get one last quip in when Gary jokes, “You should have treated me better when I was around.”
Song Ji-hyo replies, “I DID!”
Back in the karaoke, they finish with 1046 points, but Yoo Jae-suk wants to sing one more song. Song Ji-hyo cuts him off. They don’t have time for this.
The fourth course is the Photo Zone. The MCs go to a sticker photobooth that costs 4,000 won. The mission is a complete refund. All they have to do is secretly stick one of the photos on Gary’s cellphone. Gary plays such a huge role in this first episode “without Gary” that Haha asks, “Why don’t we just recast Gary?”
Back in Gary’s studio, while Yoo Jae-suk, Lee Kwang-soo, and Kim Jong-kook distract Gary and play with his dogs, the others stick photos on his laptop, wallet, and cellphone. They only had to stick one on his phone, but I guess they did the other ones for fun?
The fifth course is riding bikes at the Han River, but first they need to put gas in their car. They stop at a gas station and ask for 2,000 won worth of gas. I’m not sure if that’s even possible, but luckily the gas attendant recognizes them and is a fan of Yoo Jae-suk, so he agrees and even gives them a free bottle of water. In Korea, if you pay for a large amount of gas (usually 50,000 won or more) you get some tissues, wet wipes, or a bottle of water.
While driving to the Han River, The MCs comment that it doesn’t feel like Gary’s left the show. I agree. It’s going to be sad next week. I wish he could keep appearing on the show as a “guest.”
Once they arrive at the Han River, Haha remarks, “We have to pay parking again. AGAIN!”
There are bicycles set up there. The MCs have to rent bikes and find an “R” flag set up somewhere along the Han River. It costs 2,000 won to rent each bike.
The mission is to steal Gary’s bicycle for a chance at a complete refund. Flashback to last week’s episode when Ji Suk-jin got caught stealing Gary’s bike. It’s not going to be easy stealing it again.
The MCs yell at the PD to let Gary go. Why are all these missions Gary-centric?
While Kim Jong-kook, Yoo Jae-suk, and Haha ride bikes to find the “R” flag, Ji Seok-jin, Lee Kwang-soo, and Song Ji-hyo go to steal Gary’s bike. They have to take the car, so they need to pay a parking fee as they exit.
Since they’re low on gas again, they go back to the same gas station. They’re so embarrassed, but are relived to see that it’s a different gas attendant, but even this gas attendant asks, “2,000 won?” The employees must have talked and laughed about the <Running Man> MCs.
Lee Kwang-soo, “No, sorry this time it’s 1,550 won. We got even poorer.”
Once the trhee arrive at the studio, they tell Gary they have an urgent mission to find the sticker photos they left behind. He already found three. While Song Ji-hyo makes Gary search for stickers in another room, Ji Suk-jin tries to steal his bike. As soon as they get the bike out, Song Ji-hyo runs out, and Gary becomes suspicious that they did something secretly.
Haha finds an “R” flag 5 km from their starting point in a pot of plants. It must have taken them a long time to find.
Meanwhile, Gary is still looking around his office for what happened, but doesn’t see anything suspicious. He finds some more stickers in his wallet, and doesn’t realize that his bike is missing.
Lee Kwang-soo calls Gary to apologize for leaving him suddenly.
Gary, “I found another one.”
The three laugh, while pretending to cheer Gary on.
Gary, “This is more tiring than when I normally film.”
There’s one hour left, and the final course is to go shopping for couple items for Gary. They need to find seven of an item with just 8,130 won left. They go to a stationary store. Lee Kwang-soo wants to buy pens, while Haha and Song Ji-hyo pick useless but cheap items like ping-pong balls and janggi pieces (Korean version of jacks.)
With 10 minutes left, the crew returns to Gary’s studio with his present and stolen bike.
Gary, “You took my bike again!” He hadn’t notied until now.
They give Gary his pen necklace and the remaining 3,930 won.
Kim Jong-kook, “Ji-hyo, don’t you need to cry?”
Yoo Jae-suk, “Let’s go now.”
Gary, “I really liked today. It was nice seeing you guys come and go.”
Next Week: Hwang Woo-seul-hye and Sechs Kies