We know he’s got brawn. If you go up against him in a mud pool, you’re going in head first. We also know he’s got quick reflexes, as so many have found out when trying to remove his name tag. But what often goes unnoticed is his intelligence. Not that we aren’t well aware of his peculiar nature to analyze everything, he is just so celebrated for his strength that we forget many of the games he wins is due to his great detective work.
On Episode 217 of Running Man, we were reminded that Jong Kook isn’t just a lot of beef. The games were fun from start to finish (make sure you check out the link below), but it was the final mission that stands out.
It was winner-takes-all bingo. The first person to get three rows complete could run to the winner’s circle and claim the prize. Each member would act as a playing piece. To mark off a square on their bingo pad, they would need to eliminate each other. Naturally, Jong Kook was the primary target. He’s too big and fast for any one person, so it would have to be a group effort.
Of course, there were betrayals from the start. Still, they did make a concentrated effort to eliminate Jong Kook. And it didn’t go over well. I think the guest, Jo Jin Woong, lasted all of 2 seconds (why would anyone run directly into Jong Kook?). And Ha Ha forgot to take a good look around before unwittingly showing his back to the tiger. After that, just finding the man was a mission in itself.
But Jong Kook got real smart in the end. He counted the eliminations and realized that with Gary and Kwang Soo still on the loose, he might not be the primary target. He needed to eliminate the guest, Kim Sung-Kyun, to win and reasoned that the other two might need the same. So, he headed towards the winner’s circle hoping that Kwang Soo had one more betrayal up his sleeve.
He couldn’t have been more right. In fact, Gary and Kwang Soo worked together to eliminate Kim Sung-Kyun (Gary purposely let go of Kwang Soo’s hand), and then it was a mad sprint for the finish line. Kwang Soo would have won, but Jong Kook had put himself in perfect position and was just a short jog away.
Big, strong, quick, and clever. Kim Jong Kook won it with brains.