Who here watched the recent Jackie Chan episode of Running Man? Most, if not all Running Man fans were excited for it, and the forums and fanpages exploded with the preview for this episode. Even if you weren't a huge fan of Running Man, the very idea of action superstar Jackie Chan appearing on the show would have at least perked your interests.
Plus, I'm sure I'm not the only one who was wondering how Jackie Chan would be able to understand and communicate with the Running Man members. Of course, if you have already watched the episode, you'll know how that worked out.
The language barrier is probably the biggest hurdle for any foreign guest. For Jackie Chan, knowing a little bit of Korean helped a lot, but that didn't mean that he understood everything that the Running Man members were talking about. International viewers like us have the luxury of being able to read the subtitles, but Jackie Chan only has an earpiece with the translator desperately interpreting for him. Even then, most of the jokes fly by unnoticed by Jackie Chan. Of course, we found it hilarious when Kwang-soo was asked to translate.
"Pyeong!" - Kwang-soo translating a dart game.
Still, the fact that they actually got an international guest on Running Man proves that the producers of Running Man have definitely outdone themselves. It was a complete surprise for the Running Man members to see Jackie Chan appear right in front of them, because they never thought it would be possible.
With Jackie Chan's participation in not only providing the mission (ala the Hong Kong special) but also completing the missions alongside the Running Man members, there will be nothing stopping the Running Man producers from dreaming bigger and bigger and to bring in more illustrious guests onto the show in the future.
This essentially means is that Running Man has broken down a wall which prevented foreign guests to participate in the missions, and opened doors to the participation of other international guests. Maybe Hong Kong superstar Andy Lau will make an appearance one day? Perhaps even Hollywood may decide to cash in on the Hallyu wave and send in Bruce Willis (in a battle against his Korean counterpart, Yooruce Willis). These may seem like the rantings of a crazy person now, but 2 months ago, I wrote in this column that Jackie Chan's appearance on Running Man is "physically impossible". Look what happened.
They danced with Jackie Chan.
Running Man is taking great strides forward, in terms of international and local acclaim. I doubt that there will be anything preventing Running Man from continuing on with its current success. International races in Macao and Vietnam has shown that Running Man is immensely popular overseas. Jackie Chan has also shown that Running Man has a good enough following, enough for him to appear as a guest and plug his new movie. If the episode with Jackie Chan has proven anything, it is that Running Man can, and will break down any necessary barriers in its march towards being one of the best variety shows around.
What did you think about the Jackie Chan episode? Should the Running Man producers continue looking for foreign and international guests in the future? Leave your comments below!