Running Man Recap: Episode 331

Running Man Recap: Episode 331
Episode 331: Bad Santa’s Miracle: December 25, 2016

I think today’s opening is at a Line Friends shop in Seoul, which is a perfect place to buy Christmas gifts. I’ve been to the flagship store and the place is just three stories of cuteness, but the trinkets are a bit expensive.

Since it’s Christmas, today’s guest is a Christmas “fairy.” It’s actress Kim So-hyun. She’s just 18 years old. Yoo Jae-suk, “You’re only 18?” She’s been acting since she was so young, and has been in so many things that I’m surprised she’s still just in high school.

Kim Jong-kook asks, “Why don’t you have any wings?” Haha jokes that Jong-kook’s comedic style is old fashioned. Yeah, I also hate when MCs hit on minors, even when it’s probably just part of the script. 

Yoo Jae-suk asks Kim So-hyun what her Christmas plans are, but he answers with his own story. When Yoo Jae-suk was in high school, he’d stay out late with his girlfriend talking and playing video games. Haha asks, “An imaginary girlfriend?” 

Filling the Miracle Thermometer to 100° C

Kim So-hyun just ignores the story and continues with her script. She must be nervous. Kim So-hyun explains today’s race is to fill a miracle thermometer to 100° C. Every time they finish a mission, they will be able to fill up the thermometer little by little. The MCs also need to be Bad Santas and complete a harassment mission before the thermometer is filled up. The Bad Santas who succeed will be given 1,000,000 won (~ 1,000 USD) to be donated in his or her name. 

Ji Suk-jin is worried about how long the victims will keep a grudge. Kim Jong-kook just wants to know how much they are allowed to harass the others. 

It’s time to pick which person each Bad Santa is assigned to harass. Kim So-hyun will call each of the Running Man members one by one to pick a pouch with a name inside. Each MC will also have to write down the five ways they plan to harass their victim. 

We have no idea who anyone picked yet. 

They each write down things that Bad Santa should do. Here’s the list.

Yoo Jae-suk

  • step on his foot
  • slap his cheek
  • put soot on his face
  • splash water on his face
  • take off one of his shoes and throw it 

Kim Jong-kook

  • step on his foot
  • put something uncomfortable in his clothes
  • hit his hand while he’s eating
  • bend his leg
  • hit him so it hurts

Ji Suk-jin

  • yell in his ears
  • write stupid on his name tag
  • pull his sideburns
  • spray hairspray on him
  • hide one of his shoes


  • untie his shoestrings
  • draw a spot on his face
  • spill water
  • spray cola on him
  • hide his shoe

Song Ji-hyo

  • take off his glasses
  • bend his knees when standing
  • hide his clothes
  • give him colored lip balm
  • hide his phone

Lee Kwang-soo

  • untie his shoestring
  • step on and walk across his food
  • hit his cheek when talking
  • get part of his body wet
  • bend his calf

Ji Suk-jin suddenly grabs Song Ji-hyo’s ear. Has the mission started? This starts off a chain reaction where all the MCs start punching each other. Kim So-hyun, “We haven’t started yet.” The PD adds that it doesn’t count until they get on the bus. 

Now we’re on the bus. There’s more grabbing each other’s ears and smacking each other. Yoo Jae-suk warns Kim So-hyun that they might even accidentally hit her. Haha pulls off Ji Suk-jin’s glasses and scratches his face. Ji Suk-jin retaliates by spraying some hairspray on Haha’s face. Okay, so maybe Ji Suk-jin’s victim is Haha?

Round One

They’ve arrived at SBS Prism Tower in Sangam District. Looks like today’s show will take place on a set. Kim So-hyun explains how to fill up the thermometer. There are various presents all around the set, and each one contains a different mission. They have a chance to accrue 10-30° per mission each time they succeed. Every time they fail, one MC has to go to the punishment box. The more they bet, the higher the risk for harsh punishment. 

Yoo Jae-suk picks the first present. The first game is called “three types of nunchi” They will be given two hints. The first hint is an item, and the second is a set of hashtags. Based on these two hints, they have to guess which Running Man game it is and use that to bet how many degrees they want to risk. There will be three rounds of this game.

The first hint is 12 eggs. The second hints are #raw eggs #couple #Lee Kwang-soo Ji Suk-jin.

Ji Suk-jin guess it’s the “kkwang” game because of the Kkwang festival back in March. Kim Jong-kook thinks it’s the standing egg game. They bet 20°. They have a time limit of five minutes to complete this mission. 

Everyone picks an egg and shakes it. Suddenly Kim So-hyun reaches for Yoo Jae-suk’s egg and drops it. Some “judges” wearing matching yellow tracksuits enter the set and burst everyone’s eggs. They fail because they incorrectly guessed the mission. The correct mission was the Dangerous Bride mission from episode 244, where everyone’s supposed to keep their eggs from getting broken. Kim So-hyun cheers? What’s up with that? Is she a spy?

Kim Jong-kook throws an egg down Haha’s shirt. Kim Jong-kook, “Atleast I didn’t crack it.” Is his target Haha? I thought Ji Suk-jin was going after Haha. I guess everyone’s just attacking everyone to throw each other off. 

Now that they failed, one person has to face punishment, It’s between Haha, Lee Kwang-soo, and Ji Suk-jin. They play grab each others ears, and the first to let go has to do the punishment. It seems like this is bad enough of a punishment, but Ji Suk-jin lets go first. The true punishment is revealed. There’s a black box with black smoke coming out of it. It’s pretty creepy looking.

Ji Suk-jin has to put on googles and put his face into a black box. When he pulls out his face, it’s covered in black paint?

The MCs play the second round of the nunchi game. The first hint is Gary’s name tag. The second hints are #messy #7012 #Apgujeong. Kim Jong-kook wonders if they have to find Gary and put the name tag on him. Maybe he’s hiding in the set somewhere. They have five minutes again.

The true mission is to find mini name tags just like they did during episode 325 that featured Gary as a guest right after he left the show. Kim Jong-kook correctly guesses what they need to do. Haha finds Kwang-soo’s mini name tag. They also find Haha’s and Song Ji-hyo’s, Yoo Jae-suk’s and Ji Suk-jin’s. There are 30 seconds left. They fail to find Kim Jong-kook’s. For the punishment, they have Kim So-hyun pick a name out of an envelope. The person whose name that doesn’t get picked has to do the punishment.

Yoo Jae-suk has to stick his head in the black box of horror. He gets clothing line clippers stuck to his face.

It’s time for the third nunchi game. The first hint is an air hammer. The hashtag hints are #reaction speed #<3 #back of head. They go for 30°. The MCs have five minutes again. Haha finds a heart and hits Kim So-hyun on the back of the head with the air hammer just like in episode 314 with Lee Jun-ki. They get their first win. That’s 30° for the team.

Now it’s time for each person to say how many harassment things on their Bad Santa list they’ve completed.

Kim So=hyun explains that there is a sniper chance. One of the MCs can take the person who they think is their Bad Santa into the Room of Truth. If they pick the correct Bad Santa, then he can no longer attack, if they pick incorrectly they will get 5 floggings. The play rocks-paper-scissors to see who gets the chance. Kim Jong-kook wins but he thinks it’ll be boring if he does it, so he gives Lee Kwang-soo the chance. 

Kwang-soo takes Yoo Jae-suk but just gets smacked five times for picking incorrectly. 

Round Two: Childlike Innocence Mission

The whole crew moves to a preschool. There are three things to accomplish here. 

  • Get the children to guess three assigned phrases within three minutes 
  • Make all 15 children be silent for 10 seconds
  • Wear Santa Claus mittens and rip off all 15 children’s name tags 

32 year old Lee Kwang-soo says he’s the closest in age to the children, so he’ll understand them well. The others yell at him to quit smoking. 

Song Ji-hyo and Lee Kwang-soo have three minutes to get the children to say all three of the given phrases which are “It’s fun,” “I love you,” and “You’re strong.”

As soon as they walk in, the kids start screaming. “I know you, I know you.” They’re excited to see some celebrities. It’s going to be tough to get these kids to be quiet for the second task. The time for the mission starts and Lee Kwang-soo asks, “What do you think of Running Man?” Kid, “It’s weird.” They eventually get the kids to say that it’s fun. Next Song Ji-hyo makes the heart symbol with her fingers and asks what the kids think of it. They yell out I love you.” They’re good at listening. Lee Kwang-soo then lifts up one of the kids on his shoulders. He asks to do arm wrestling. All the kids join in to beat Kwang-soo. I guess he’s not so strong after all. They fail to get the last phrase.

Kim Jong-kook and Haha try the next mission which is to get all the children to be quiet for 10 seconds. Even one second is going to be tough. Haha tells the kids that they’re going to play a really fun game. Haha, “Do you know what game it is?” The kids responds, “Ripping name tags!” Haha does a good job by responding, “If you win this you can rip off name tags. You all need to be quiet for 10 seconds wins. If you make a sound, you’re in last place.” The kids are good at following the rules, but this seems to be hard. They’re so cute covering their mouths with their hands, and somehow Kim Jong-kook and Haha manage to succeed in one try.

Once that’s over, the kids start crawling up Haha and Kim Jong-kook. They tell the kids they did a good job, so they’ll be able to rip name tags soon.

Yoo Jae-suk and Ji Suk-jin walk in the classroom next. The kids run up and start pulling Yoo Jae-suk’s arms. Ji Suk-jin is too busy rounding up the kids that he forgets to rip off their name tags. They run out of time. 

At the preschool, the MCs get an extra 20 degrees which means that they’re halfway there now.

Now back at the set, we get another progress report on how many Bad Santa activities each MC has completed.

We find out that Yoo Jae-suk had to harass Song Ji-hyo and Lee Kwang-soo had Yoo Jae-suk.

They get another shot at the sniper. Lee Kwang-soo takes Ji Suk-jin this time. He guesses correctly, so Ji Suk-jin is now demoted from Santa to reindeer.

Round Three: Tweezer Betting

Yoo Jae-suk picks another present. This game is Tweezer Betting. The first theme is music. Kim So-hyun will sing a song, and the two players have to guess the name of the song while wearing headphones. They have to bet on who will win for 30°. The other four MCs all bet on Kim Jong-kook to win. Kim Jong-kook and Song Ji-hyo don’t know which is them is supposed to win, so they both have to try their best. 

The first song is Kim Gun-mo’s “Wrongful Encounter.” Neither Kim Jong-kook and Song Ji-hyo get the lyrics. Eventually, Kim Jong-kook guesses it correctly. Next is Taeyang’s “Eyes, Nose, Mouth.” Kim Jong-kook gets this one too. 

They get an extra 30° which means they only need 20° more. 

The next tweezer betting is Rudolph’s reindeer antlers. It’s Kim So-hyun and Ji Suk-jin. They have to get at least three out of ten ring tosses on the antlers. Kim Jong-kook only wants to bet 10° because he hasn’t finished his Bad Santa mission yet. Yoo Jae-suk wants 20° since he’s done with his. They do rocks-paper-scissors to see how much they’ll bet. Kim Jong-kook wins so they go with 10°.

Kim So-hyun gets three rings in fairly easily. 

The next game is telepathy. One person answers a question and at least three out of five people have to write down the same answer.

The first question is when am I the best looking? Haha wrote down when showering which all the MCs went with as well.

The second question is how to get rid of stress? The MCs guess drinking which Haha wrote down as well.  The third question is the celebrity whose face I want to change with? They all guess G-Dragon. They only need to get three correct, but do a fourth one for fun. The body part I’m most confident in. It’s his right arm. The fifth question is when I feel like an adult? It’s when his son Dream was born.

They’ve finished filling up all 100° and it’s time to do performance evaluations. Kim Jong-kook had Haha. 

Of the three people who failed to complete their Bad Santa mission, only one person gets a punishment. Ji Suk-jin, Song Ji-hyo, and Haha each pick papers where one of them has “punishment” written on it. Song Ji-hyo has the punishment, but she switches with Ji Suk-jin at the last minute. 

Ji Suk-jin goes to the black box one more time. This time he gets both the soot and laundry clips on his face. 

The show ends with the successful Bad Santas donating money. 

Oh wait there’s more. It’s December 25th and the MCs have gathered to film one last scene for this episode. Kim Jong Kook, “I thought I wasn’t going to see your faces again.” There’s a basket of apples and flowers waiting for the MCs as an apology because in Korean, apples and apologies are homonyms. 

Yoo Jae-suk reads a letter of apology from the Running Man production team and says they’ll work even harder in the New Year and apologizes to the viewers for upsetting them. 

Next Week: It’s 2017 and there’s a program for kicking off the new year.


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