After a decade and a nearly year of laughter on Running Man, actor Lee Kwangsoo is saying goodbye to the show and his fellow cast members. Last April, he announced his departure to prioritize his health, as he needed to concentrate on recovering from his ankle injury sustained in a car accident last February 2020. He had been undergoing rehabilitation since then, but balancing treatment and filming took a toll on the actor, prompting a long and thoughtful discussion with the Running Man cast and crew that eventually led to his decision to leave the show.
Fans of the show (us included!) would definitely miss Lee Kwangsoo, his mischievous betrayals, and his unlucky moments. To commemorate his last episode on the show, here are some of the most iconic Lee Kwangsoo moments in Running Man that still has us laughing out loud, proving that though Kwangsoo may seem unlucky, he’s definitely blessed by the variety show gods.
Right from the get-go
From the very beginning, it seemed that Lee Kwangsoo was always meant to be unlucky. As Yoo Jaesuk was introducing each cast member in Episode 1, the rain started pouring. And it kept on pouring and pouring as each member went that by the time Kwangsoo tried to introduce himself (keyword: tried), his fellow members could barely hear him, distracted as they were while looking for shelter. And then there was Kwangsoo, eyes closed and still attempting to get through his introduction spiel that even the production team were laughing at how ridiculous things were going in the very first episode. A great start for Running Man, and an unlucky beginning for Lee Kwangsoo!
Egg facials not once, but twice
In Episode 143, the members and guests played a game involving a tray of eggs — all hard-boiled save for one single raw egg. The players had to crack the egg against their foreheads, and the one who gets the raw egg loses. Kwangsoo proves how unlucky (and blessed by the variety gods) he is by not only getting the raw egg on his first try, but also getting another raw egg on his second try, right after he had just cleaned up the mess on his face.
To celebrate the show’s 7th anniversary, episodes 360 and 361 brought on the friends and family of the Running Man cast, which was all well and good and fun. But the punishment for the losers involved taking a cold shower outdoors, with buckets of ice water dumped over them. Unfortunately for Kwangsoo, he was part of the losing team. Getting an iced shower is already bound to have hilarious moments. But the cast, friends and family, and crew were all shocked when Kwangsoo’s pants fell off when the water was dumped on him. And what makes it funnier is that this wasn’t the first time it happened in these episodes (his pants gave up after a tussle with the other cast members). Plus, there’s the fact that Kwangsoo himself didn’t notice his pants were off until much later. He was just too cold.
The Blue Monster
Episode 462 found the Running Man members playing different games, including the iconic Try Not to Laugh game. The members worked hard to make each other laugh with ridiculous wigs and absurd sketches. Kwangsoo took his sweet time getting his face painted blue (a look he also did in a previous episode). But unfortunately, he appeared too late, just like he did in the episode before.
Who is prettier, BLACKPINK or his girlfriend?
In Episode 525, girl group BLACKPINK joined the Running Man cast, where they played a truth game while wearing cat headbands that essentially worked as lie detectors (they move when you’re nervous). Kwangsoo had fun asking questions. But when his turn came, he became obviously flustered after being asked to choose between BLACKPINK’s Jisoo and his girlfriend Lee Sunbin. He didn’t answer, but the cat ears gave away how nervous he was, causing hilarity throughout the group.
Interestingly enough, he also first met his girlfriend Sunbin in an earlier Running Man episode, where he asked her if he really was her ideal type and a lie detector caught her lying. (Another episode later showed that she had a change of heart!) They started dating in 2018 and have been going strong since.
The Lion Sleeps Tonight
In Episode 520, the members were made to try new hobbies and skills, one of which was to sing acapella. Kim Jongkook nailed the melody of “The Lion Sleeps Tonight,” serenading the cast, crew, and audience. Meanwhile, when Lee Kwangsoo was singing, everyone couldn’t help but laugh (even his own teammates!). He was singing so seriously and so confidently despite being so off-pitch.
The giraffe in his habitat?!
Long-time fans of Running Man know that Kwangsoo is nicknamed Giraffe for his extremely tall and slender figure. And when the cast visited a zoo in Episode 141, Kwangsoo ~connected~ so well with the giraffes. It was like he found his own habitat. He fed the giraffe and even got a kiss in return!
Tiger vs Giraffe
Another well-known gag throughout the whole show is the rivalry between Kim Jongkook and Lee Kwangsoo. Usually, giraffe Kwangsoo is beaten by tiger Jongkook, who is known for his strength. And usually, Kwangsoo can only get back at Jongkook if other people are restraining Jongkook or if he catches him off guard.
In Episode 169, a moth landed on Jongkook’s helmet and Kwangsoo took the opportunity to “help” him. Kwangsoo slapped it away, subsequently hitting Jongkook’s head. Jongkook was quick to promise that he’d catch a bug to put on Kwangsoo’s head. Well, his chance came just a few minutes later. A butterfly flew into the scene and landed right on Kwangsoo’s nose. What else should Jongkook do? Pass up this golden chance?
What other Lee Kwangsoo moments would you miss in Running Man? Share them with us!