SBS Korean Channel aired the final episode of Running Man with Lee Kwang Soo as its cast member yesterday (June 13).
Lee recently announced his departure from the long-running variety show, citing health reasons.
In the final episode featuring Lee, he was jokingly "sentenced" to 1,050 years of prison after reviewing what he had done in the variety show in the past 11 years.
The mission of the race for other Running Man members included helping Lee reduce his sentence and the race kicked off at Han River where the original Running Man cast first started filming the series.
At the end of the episode, the Running Man cast also wrote letters to Lee as they said their farewells to the beloved "Giraffe" or "Asia Prince" (nicknames that Lee has gotten in the past years).
According to Soompi, Ji Suk Jin said that he was happy to do the ‘Pil! Chok! Cross!’ together while Yoo Jae Suk said that he wouldn't know who else to interrupt or ask to piggy bag him anymore. HaHa also wrote about how he would have no one else to "tease" or "con" from now on.
Kim Jong Kook spoke about his chemistry with Lee where they would start laughing while just looking at each other and he thought he will go on forever with Lee in the show.
Running Man members also spoke about how they will miss Lee, but believe their friendships will continue even after Lee's departure from the show.
A former producing director of Running Man also gave high praise, saying that Lee had never said "No" to the producers.
Lee always gave his all to the show
In his letter to other Running Man members, Lee thanked the rest for taking care of him, and treating him like family. He apologised for not being "always great" and urged viewers to continue to support the show.
Here's a translation of what he said from Soompi:
“The members helped me get to where I am today. They feel like another family, and I am so, so grateful to them. I’m sorry. I’m sorry again. I wasn’t always great in the past eleven years, but I always did my best. ‘Running Man’ is a show where everyone without exception does their best and throws their whole bodies into filming. I ask that people continue to show it more love and interest in future. Thank you.”
On June 13, before his last episode was aired, Lee also wrote a thank you note to viewers.
According to Allkpop, he said:
"Thank you for running with me for 11 years. I am sincerely grateful to all of you viewers who ran with SBS 'Running Man's Lee Kwang Soo every Sunday for 11 years. Thank you again for all of the love and support you gave me during that time."
SBS said that there will not be a new member replacing Lee in Running Man for now.
Top image via kjk76 and sbs_runningman_sbs/Instagram