Show rankings for January
1. Infinite Challenge
Infinite Challenge’s month could perhaps best be described as extremely solid but unspectacular. The first three episodes were the generally well done What If…? series, and the fourth was the light hearted and entertaining start to the Cheerleading Project.While the other shows were somewhat lacking and did not provide much competition, MuDo was also consistently good throughout the month of January.
2. 2 Days 1 Night
In January, it seems that 1N2D fell back down to earth somewhat following a very good first month of the new season. While the show was rarely outright bad, it was for the most part mediocre despite a handful of quality moments.
3. Running Man
Running Man was the weakest show of the month by far. Despite finishing with the strong “Letter From Hong Kong” episode, the awful two-part cooking special and the mundane “Secret Love” episode crippled any chances it had to move up the rankings.
Variety Cast Members Top 3 for December
1. Kim Jun Ho – 1N2D
After a somewhat lackluster start to his 1N2D career, Jun Ho stepped up his game significantly in January. He really began to take up the role of ‘Gagman-in-chief’ of the show, and consistently delivered energetic and entertaining performances that also helped the other members to shine.
2. Yoo Jae Suk – Running Man
Despite how bad Running Man was in January, it would have been a complete disaster had Jae Suk not been there to keep it together. He was the only Running Man member to perform well in all episodes (although Jong Kook was also quite solid), and was crucial in leading several inexperienced guests to decent performances – while also being the funniest member himself.
3. No Hong Chul – Infinite Challenge
While he was at the center of the three-part “We Got Married” parody, these segments were not actually where Hong Chul did his best work this month. While he was certainly solid in this role, and did a very professional job allowing Jang Yoon Ju to shine, he was also consistently active and amusing during the ‘discussion’ segments across all episodes in January. His reactions were top notch, and his personal attacks on the likes of Jun Ha and Myung Soo consistently added to the show.
Variety Cast Members Bottom 3 for December
1. Ji Suk Jin – Running Man
While Suk Jin wasn’t really -bad- at any point, he was consistently crowded out by the high volume of guests on this month’s Running Man episodes. While others had more bad moments than Suk Jin, they also had many more good ones to show for their month of filming.
2. Gary – Running Man
Another month of weak Gary performances, as he seemed content to once again take up space in the background for most of the shoots. On the bright side, he seemed like the Gary of old in several segments of the most recent episode, so hopefully we can look forward to continued improvement.
3. Song Ji Hyo/Ha Ha (tie) – Running Man
Both were major victims of the editing room during the guest-heavy cooking episodes, and while they were both decent in the following two episodes, neither did enough to make up for lost ground.
Guests Top 3 for December
1. Jang Yoon Ju : Infinite Challenge
In her previous appearances as the host of the yearly IC calendar modelling competitions, Yoon Ju had been portrayed mostly as a character that tries to be serious but has a tendency towards silliness, such as making mistakes, laughing out loud, and so forth. Her appearances in the We Got Married parody were quite eye-opening, as she demonstrated a very good natural sense of comic timing and a willingness to put herself ‘out there’ for variety purposes. Her personality came across as genuinely playful and clever, and this combined with her somewhat uniquely amusing appearance to create a very strong guest performance, in which she even led veteran Hong Chul from time to time.
2. Song Eun I / Kim Sook- Infinite Challenge
Veteran comedians Eun I and Sook have always been guests that a variety show can rely on for a good performance, and their appearances in the WGM parody were no exception. Being paired with Gil is not necessarily an easy task, yet each seemed comfortable and energetic in their guest role, which helped greatly in bringing out a good performance from Gil. It may be a bit of a cheat putting them together, but they are somewhat of a package deal after all.
3. Yeo Jin Goo – Running Man
Teenager Jin Goo appeared in the final episode of the month, and brought along some much needed youthful enthusiasm as well a some naturally funny reactions and body language. Nothing brilliant from him, but with a little help from Jae Suk he ended up having a very positive impact on his episode as a whole,
Guests Bottom Three for January
1. Lee Jong Suk – Running Man
Was painfully awkward and dull, yet still took up a large amount of screen time that could have been given to the members.
2. Kim Kyung Ho – Running Man
The ajumma rocker was perpetually bland in his guest appearances, despite Suk Jin’s repeated attempts to get him engaged.
3. Infinite’s Sung Kyu – Running Man
Massively cut alongside Ha Ha, and boring when he did actually appear.