The “Running Man” cast showed their solid bond as they responded to the news of Lee Kwang Soo leaving the show with their trademark jokes and teasing.
In April, it was revealed that Lee Kwang Soo was stepping down from “Running Man” for health reasons. The episode of “Running Man” that aired on May 30 was from the first recording that the cast filmed together after the news was announced.
To lighten the mood around the news, Yang Se Chan teased in a phone call, “How can you even eat?” In another phone call, Yoo Jae Suk said, “I heard you were stepping down?”, pretending that he hadn’t known about the news beforehand. Song Ji Hyo also brought up the news and quipped, “So you’re leaving ‘Running Man’? Please tell us your thoughts.”
Upon seeing Lee Kwang Soo’s facial hair, Kim Jong Kook joked, “Did you grow out your facial hair to make it seem like you’re having a hard time because you’re stepping down from ‘Running Man?’” Yoo Jae Suk also pointed out the facial hair when he arrived, and Lee Kwang Soo said to the production staff, “Please get me a razor.”
HaHa also joked about whether this was his last recording, but Lee Kwang Soo clarified for viewers, “I still have two weeks of recording left.” HaHa said in mock sternness, “Cry right now.”
Yoo Jae Suk, Yang Se Chan, HaHa, and Kim Jong Kook also made two-character acrostic poems on the word “ha-cha,” which means “step down” in Korean. Yoo Jae Suk quipped via his poem, “If we had to get one more member (ha-na means ‘one’ in Korean), it would be Cha Eun Woo.” On this theme, HaHa said, “If we got one more member, it would be Cha Tae Hyun.” In the end, Lee Kwang Soo retorted, “Stop it (ha-jima), jerks (cha-sik, wordplay on the actual word ja-sik).”
Yoo Jae Suk remarked, “What if we teased him so much for the next two weeks about stepping down that he said, ‘I’m just going to stay after all?’”
At the end of the episode, it was revealed that HaHa’s son, Dream, had made a surprise appearance on the show. Yoo Jae Suk joked, “Is Dream coming to replace Lee Kwang Soo?” (The production staff wrote in subtitles, “It would certainly bring down the average age of the cast.”) Dream, who is a big fan of “Running Man,” asked Yoo Jae Suk, “Since Lee Kwang Soo is stepping down, please continue to interrupt the speech of other members as well.” Yoo Jae Suk promised, “Don’t worry. That’s something I’m really good at.”