Running Men Run Rings Around Haru

So, I finally got around to watching Haru, KTO’s hallyu tourism campaign and I am sorry to say that it did not inspire me to visit Korea at all. To be fair, I thought the interactive element was quite clever (the movie contains tags that you collect to form a virtual guidebook. You need to watch it on the official website to do this though.) However Haru was so dull I stopped watching it midway through. Not even Kim Bum, who I adore, could convince me to finish it.

There was nothing in it that made me think “Oh, I want to do this” or “I want to visit that place, it looks like fun” or “I definitely want to eat that.” This is because all the characters do is a) get blown into the air (Yunho), b) take pictures of a random stranger (Kim Bum), c) jog and look hot (Han Chae-yang) and d) drive around the sticks looking for a bunch of school children (Big Bang).

I can only imagine that in trying to avoid the usual touristy clichés, they lost the plot along the way.

When I visit another country, I want to know where/what the locals eat, where they hang out and what they do for fun. Oh, and pretty scenery is always a plus. Frankly, if you want to see the sights in Korea (or Seoul to be precise), a better bet would be to watch SBS’s Running Man, which is turning out to be far more enjoyable than I thought it would be.

I’ll admit I got into it for Song Joong-ki at first but am now watching it for its zippy sense of fun.

Joong-ki is the brain of Running Man - like you would expect anything less from the Gu Yong-ha

If you don’t already know, Running Man is a reality “action variety show” that pits two teams against each other in a series of challenges. Each episode is filmed at a different public landmark and the losing team has to carry out their punishment in public.

Humiliation is a dish best served in hot pants

It’s might not be that obvious from the caps below but the regulars (Yoo Jae-suk, Ji Suk-jin, Kim Jong-kook, Song Ji-hyo, Lee Kwang-soo, Ha Ha and Song Joong-ki) have really good chemistry together. They look like they’re genuinely enjoying themselves and everyone brings something to the show.

Guess what's everybody's two favourite words?

I don’t really care for the idols who come on as guests, though it’s a bonus when they make an effort to participate instead of treating it as a publicity exercise.

Have some caps:

Joong-ki vs Nickhun: Fan-service...where would we be without it?

Song Ji-hyo vs Kim Jong-kook: I love RM's resident muscle man. He is such a softy.

Commander Sparta is not happy with his boys...

Guess who took time off from the set of Conan the Barbarian?

Go watch if you haven’t. You can get English subs from rundevilrunsubs and iSUBS.

In other news, I am plodding through the last three recaps for Sungkyunkwan Scandal. They should be up before Christmas…hopefully.

Current drama roster: Secret Garden. I like the comic element (always a plus where I’m concerned) and I agree with Dramabeans that it has a gorgeous visual palette. See, this is what I’m talking about when I ask for pretty scenery, KTO! However though I like how the story is developing, it’s not making me swoon yet. Then again, there are 18 more episodes to go…

I was never all that interested in Marry Me, Mary to begin with so am choosing to watch it vicariously through Dangermousie.

The one drama that I’m really keeping an eye out for though is What’s Up, which I am watching for Im Joo-hwan (aka Park Kyu from Tamra the Island) and what I hope is going to be a strong ensemble cast. Keeping my fingers crossed for this one. Can’t wait!

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