Revisiting the most-watched episodes of Running Man

Revisiting the most-watched episodes of Running Man
PHOTO: ONE

There are just two more months left until Korean variety show Running Man airs its last show in February 2017.

Although ratings for the show have slowed down, it is still one of the most-watched weekend variety shows in Korea with its humour and engaging game content.

To reminisce on the good times, here are some of the episodes with the highest ratings throughout the years of Running Man, which aired between 2012 and 2013.

Read also: Running Man to end in Feb 2017, Song Ji Hyo and Kim Jong Kook will stay till the finale

Episode 97

Episode 97 is essentially the episode with the highest ratings throughout the show's history. It had a record 27.6 and 22 per cent ratings in the Seoul National Capital Area by TNmS and AGB Nielsen Korea, respectively.

One of the highlights of the Jun. 3, 2012 episode was when two of South Korea's now retired professional football players, Park Ji-Sung and Seol Ki-hyun met and led a mini match between a Running Man team and K-pop idols.

Running Man stars Song Ji-Hyo and Kim Jong Kook reportedly booted off show

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    Fans and cast members of hit Korean variety show Running Man can't seem to catch a break.

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    Last week, the show made headlines when it was announced that two of its cast members Song Ji-Hyo and Kim Jong Kook would be leaving.

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    In less than 24 hours, reports of how the two stars were actually booted off the show surfaced.

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    Several Korean media outlets reported that the two stars were "blindsided" and may not have been as involved in discussions about their departure from the show.

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    According to online news site Koreaboo, Song's agency has since released a statement addressing the issue, adding that "it is true there was a lack of active communication from the production crew in the steps leading up to (Song) leaving the show."

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    Kim's agency also announced that reports of the singer "leaving the show one-sidedly" were also true and that the situation is "regrettable".

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    And now it's been revealed that Song was deeply affected by her removal, especially since she apparently did not know about it until the day news broke.

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    Entertainment website Koreaboo reported that a source close to Song disclosed the extent of her despair upon hearing the news and revealed that she had a very difficult time following the news.

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    Song was part of the show's popular 'Monday Couple' along with rapper Gary, who quit the show in October. Her onscreen boyfriend shut down his Instagram page after the controversy.

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    The actress and singer are reported to be donating their remaining appearance fees to charity following their departures from the variety show Running Man.

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    "Song Ji-hyo and Kim Jong-kook have agreed to collect their income from the appearance fees that they will receive starting from next week to the end of the programme in February to give to the public," said Song's agency spokesperson, as quoted by Antara news agency on Monday.

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    The spokesperson also said that the donation's details were still being discussed. Kim's agency has also confirmed the plan.

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    Following the news of the departures, Kang Ho-dong, an entertainer slated to join the show's new season decided to back out from the show.

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    His management said: "We don't know all the details of the situation, but Kang Ho Dong doesn't want his casting to cause viewers any discomfort."

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    Running Man will come to an end by February next year, as announced by SBS, the network that airs the show.

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    Kim and Song also confirmed that they would be re-joining Running Man until the end of the series.

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    According to Koreaboo, Song's agency added that she wishes to end things on a good note for the fans and stay loyal to her fellow cast members.

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    Over the years, both the show and its stellar cast have gained fans all over Asia and even the Middle East with several episodes filmed abroad in countries such as Australia, Shanghai, Vietnam and Dubai.

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Episode 119

Episode 119 sits in second place ratings-wise in 2012, as it gained an average of almost 24 per cent rating nationwide and in the Seoul National Capital Area as recorded by TNmS and the average of 21 per cent by AGB Nielsen Korea.

The episode's highlight was the appearance of two baseball players, Choo Shin-soo (Cleveland Indians, Texas Rangers) and Ryu Hyun-jin (LA Dodgers, Hanhwa Eagles). Together with Running Man's regular cast member and actress Jin Se-yeon, the two played the show's signature name tag-ripping game, as well as a super baseball game.

Read also: Running Man star Song Ji-Hyo reportedly cut contact and cried for days after being removed from show

Episode 131

Episode 131, which aired on Feb. 3, 2013 got the highest ratings in 2013 with an average of almost 25 per cent both nationwide and in the Seoul area, as recorded by TNmS and an average of around 21 per cent rating by AGB Nielsen Korea.

Chu Sung-hoon, a Korean-Japanese wrestler, who is also known for his appearance in the show Superman Returns appeared in the episode, alongside actress and amateur boxer Lee Si-young. The two guests played the name tag-hunting game with Running Man regular cast members, as well as several games required to gain supplies for the main game ddakji (traditional Korean game using folded paper tiles).

Episode 133

on Facebook

[RunningMan_Legend] EP.133 <아시아 레이스> 열 남자 안부러운 대범함의 에이스 지효! #마카오번지점프 No hesitation! Our ace Ji-hyo is so brave~ #Macautower #런닝맨 #런닝맨레전드 #RunningMan #Legend

Posted by 런닝맨 RunningMan on Wednesday, 9 November 2016

Episode 133 had the second highest ratings in 2013, with an average of almost 24 per cent rating both nationwide and in the Seoul area, as recorded by TNmS and an average 22 per cent rating by AGB Nielsen Korea.

In the episode that aired on Feb. 17, 2013, the Running Man cast travelled to Macau in China together with guests, actress Han Hye-jin and actor Lee Dong-wook. One of the main points of the episode was when the cast had to try to bungee jump or climb, and stroll on the outer part of Macau Tower.

Read also: Song Ji-hyo and Kim Jong Kook to donate remaining Running Man fee

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