X-Man (TV series)

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Good Sunday - X-man
GoodSundayXman.jpg
Genre Game show, Comedy, Psychological
Starring Yoo Jae-suk
Kang Ho-dong
Kim Je-dong (S.1-23)
Gong Hyung-jin (S.24-34)
Park Kyung-lim (S.35-59)
Lee Hyuk-jae (S.60-90)
Country of origin South Korea
Original language(s) Korean
No. of seasons 90
No. of episodes 178 (List of episodes)
Production
Producer(s) Jang Hyuk-jae
Running time 50-80 minutes
per episode
Broadcast
Original channel SBS
Original run November 8, 2003 – April 8, 2007
Chronology
Followed by Haja! GO (하자!GO)
Related shows Good Sunday
Real Situation Saturday
External links
Website

X-man (Hangul: X맨) was a popular South Korean game show which ran from November 8, 2003 to April 8, 2007 on SBS. Its popularity peaked in 2004, but a decline in ratings led to its cancellation. It was hosted by Yoo Jae-suk, Kang Ho-dong, Kim Je-dong, with Kim being successively replaced by Gong Hyung-jin, Park Kyung-lim, and Lee Hyuk-jae; only the first two were on the program since its inception.

X-man was loosely based on The Mole.[1]

History[edit]

The program first aired on November 8, 2003 as a "Genuine Psychological Reasoning Variety", Real Situation: Finding X-man (실제상황 X맨을 찾아라), a corner program of Real Situation Saturday. On October 10, 2004, the program was moved to Good Sunday and simply known as X-man. On November 5, 2006, the program became the sole program airing in Good Sunday and was officially known as X-man Good Sunday airing until April 8, 2007.

Real Situation Saturday era[edit]

In the first season of the program, the main host was Kim Je-dong, with team leaders Kang Ho-dong and Yoo Jae-suk of Kang and Yoo Team respectively. Beginning with Season 2, Yoo Jae-suk replaced Kim Je-dong as main host, with Kim Je-dong becoming the leader of Kim Team (Yoo Team in Season 2). During this early stages of the program, popular games which became staples of the show were Team! Horse Riding and Tongue Twisters Relay, with the biggest hit Of Course! created in May 2004.

Good Sunday era[edit]

Following high ratings in the Saturday evening timeslot, X-man was moved to Good Sunday in October 2004, which was the lowest rated program of the Sunday evening timeslot.[2] After the move, Good Sunday became the top rated program of the Sunday evening timeslot, beating incumbent MBC's Sunday Sunday Night by 2005. As the program aired under Good Sunday, a line up of changes occurred to the opposing team of Kang Team. The team leaders changed from Kim Je-dong to Gong Hyung-jin, Park Kyung-lim, and finally Lee Hyuk-jae.

Popular mission Team! Horse Riding was abolished in April 2005 following the injury of comedian Kim Ki-wook during the game. Team! Chicken Fight and Team! "Go" Fighting later replaced it. Also in 2005, popular mission Couples and Warriors Forever became a hot topic following the fabulous performances by guests, which were intended to form couples to play couple games. However, by 2006, the second episode of a season became too focused on the performances and were criticized for forgetting the original concept of the program of psychological games, which was reflected in a decline in ratings.

X-man Good Sunday era[edit]

Logo of New X-man

With the Autumn Program Restructuring of 2006, the second corner program of Good Sunday was cancelled, with X-man reformatted and airing as a stand-alone program. Airing in X-man Good Sunday was New X-man, abandoning the psychological game format and finding the team disruptor, the X-man became the top choice among various celebrities of surveys. Therefore, the objective of the game was to guess who would be the #1 vote-getter and trade the X-man over to the other team. The only time this was possible was when the team won a mission, after which they would have the chance to either retrieve someone from the other team or send someone over. Teams were chosen through a lottery system, with MC Yoo serving as the "divider". The number he picked served as the dividing line between the teams (with Kang Ho-dong getting the guests with earlier numbers, and Lee Hyuk-jae getting the later numbers). The team who has the X-man at the end loses the entire "game".[3]

Unfortunately, the new format did not prove to be popular and was cancelled following the Spring Program Restructuring of 2007. It was replaced by Haja! Go! (하자!고), which was also hosted by Yoo Jae-suk, with Kang Ho-dong moving to KBS's Happy Sunday.[4] X-man became the last program South Korea's top MCs Yoo Jae-suk and Kang Ho-dong worked together.

Format[edit]

Each season was divided into two episodes, airing in consecutive weeks. The first season was divided into six episodes, with three chances to find the X-man. The second and third season was divided into four episodes, with two chances. As of the fourth season, challengers only had one chance (two episodes) to find the X-man.[5] The various celebrities were divided into two teams, with one led by Kang Ho-dong (Kang Team) and the second by the other main MC. Yoo Jae-suk served as the show's mediator and main MC. At the start of each episode, one celebrity would be chosen by the producer to be the X-man, whose main mission was to disrupt teamwork in his or her team and purposely throw challenges while keeping his or her identity a secret. Winning teams of each mission would be awarded 1 million. Actual amounts were undisclosed after earlier seasons.

After all the missions, the guests then voted on who they think is the X-man. The celebrity participant who was chosen was then digitally "fingerprinted" to see if the others chose correctly. If the others chose correctly, any money earned by the teams was donated to charity, under the names of the various guests. If they failed to find the X-man, the X-man was considered to have succeeded and the money donated to charity was given under the X-man's name.

Missions[edit]

X-man has featured many missions that have become very popular with the general audience. Missions consisted of various physical and mental games that changed every few months.

Hosts[edit]

  • Yoo Jae-suk: Main Host, Season 1 Yoo Team Team Leader
  • Kang Ho-dong: Kang Team Team Leader
  • Kim Je-dong (November 8, 2003 - November 28, 2004): Kim Team Team Leader, Season 1 Main Host
  • Gong Hyung-jin (December 5, 2004 - May 1, 2005): Gong Team Team Leader
  • Park Kyung-lim (May 8, 2005 - April 30, 2006): Park Team Team Leader
  • Lee Hyuk-jae (May 7, 2006 - April 8, 2007): Lee Team Team Leader

List of episodes[edit]

Trivia[edit]

  • Kim Je-dong was the only MC on X-man to have his team name written in Hanja as opposed to the traditional Hangul. This may be because the Hangul for Kang (강) and Kim (김) are very close to one another.
  • The original team names, Kang (강) and Yoo (유), were actually meant in Hanja for Hangul: ; hanja: as in strong and Hangul: ; hanja: as in tender, representing Kang Ho-dong and Yoo Jae-suk respectively, but were disregarded once Kim Je-dong became team leader.
  • When identifying who is X-man, if the suspect was X-man, the screen read "Identical" (일치), if the suspect was not X-man, it would read "Discordant" (불일치) and carbon dioxide would be sprayed in the form of an "X" in front of the suspect. Starting in Season 65, the Couple Event took place in a different set resembling a forest, the "finger-print ceremony" took place there as well, but lacking a screen, in which "Identical" would be represented by fireworks, and "Discordant" was still represented by "X" carbon dioxide.
  • Originally, suspects were identified corresponding to the number of votes received, but after earlier seasons, after incorrectly identifying X-man, he/she was simply revealed by MC Yoo in order to save time.

Awards & achievements[edit]

Year Awards
2007
  • 2007 SBS Entertainment Awards (December 30)[6]
    • Korean Wave Program Award - X-man
    • Grand Award (Daesang) - Kang Ho-dong

References[edit]

  1. ^ (Korean) "SBS '실제상황…' 美프로 베꼈나". Naver News. 24 November 2003. Retrieved 16 April 2011. 
  2. ^ (Korean) "MBC와 SBS, 예능 프로그램도 전면전". Naver News. 15 October 2004. Retrieved 16 April 2011. 
  3. ^ (Korean) "`뉴X맨` 심리 버라이어티 쇼 변신". Herald Economy. 5 April 2010. Retrieved 25 April 2011. 
  4. ^ (Korean) "강호동 '일요일이 좋다' 하차…유재석 단독 MC". My Daily. 30 March 2007. Retrieved 25 April 2011. 
  5. ^ (Korean) "기억에 남는 X-맨은?". Naver News. 16 April 2004. Retrieved 16 April 2011. 
  6. ^ (Korean) 2007년 SBS 연예대상 수상작 SBS. Retrieved January 5, 2010.

External links[edit]