Law of the Jungle in Papua New Guinea: Women’s Special
Rain falls, people trudge through forests. Someone gets lost and it’s only been a minute in and already we see someone fall into a rushing river and hanging on to a log for dear life. Welcome to “hell”, on the east side of New Guinea island.
On this leg of the show, we have diving instructor Choi SongHyun, engineering graduate (why does that make me so happy?), Girl’s Day’s SoJin, Gag Concert’s McGyver Kim JiMin, descendant of a soldier, Choi YoonYoung and finally, Apink’s HaYoung who’s simply strong. Lol, Seho’s face makes an appearance.
The girls are all smiles, but Chief ByungMan is all worried, since Papua New Guinea is just on the other half of the western, Indonesian side of New Guinea island where he had his worst survival experience so far.
The place is humid and no one can see through the clouds in the sky. He had wanted to go home as soon as possible and we see that offer being made to the girls. It’s hardship and injury every step of the way and they all cry. This is just the preview.
Back where it all started, the girls and Chief ByungMan and KangNam meet at the airport in Korea. While KangNam basks in ByungMan’s praises, the girls get a flashy welcome, courtesy of some journalists. They greet and then ByungMan sets it straight that the women are on their own and that he and KangNam are just tools to be used, not leaders.
Cartoon airplanes are shown and the casts regroup in Papua New Guinea.
In New Guinea, ByungMan’s evidently full of tension as he voices his worries of them surviving near and around mangroves. KangNam brings up mosquitoes and JiMin says she feels them… but it’s just her hair. Ha!
Veteran ByungMan judges their survival skills simply by glancing at what they’ve brought. Mat-unnie Choi SongHyun gets his stamp of approval while JiMin just gets labelled a beginner the moment she brags about her Swiss knife. Why does she have a plaster on her face? The trip hasn’t even started!
It’s time to check their bags for contraband and YoonYoung offers up her brand-covered-snacks. JiMin guards her bag so seriously that it makes ByungMan suspicious but that’s just because she’s hiding sanitary pads. Oops! From SoJin’s bag, a HUUUUUGE packet of MSG emerges. Hahahaha!! What did she think she was going to cook?
The women tribe’s 100-hour survival. That’s the theme of this trip and the PD gives them the choice to go home immediately if they want to within the first 24 hours but after that, they can never leave. Why must he make it so scary?
They choose the member they think will fall out first. It’s Jimin and she fakes a faint.
With a cheer and a declaration to show the world what women can do, the Amazones (their group name) start their 4 days of survival in a jungle.
The sky doesn’t even give them a break and pours on them as they travel along the river in a speedboat. Regardless, their spirits are high and YoonYoung even laughs because she can’t look in ByunMan’s direction without the rain assaulting her eyes. They worry about firewood in this wet situation but ByungMan just advises them to find large logs and cut them.
Is that the sea or what?! What is this place?!
Oh, they did cross the sea.
Their first mission upon reaching land is to find their survival zone by canoe-rafts. They split into two groups. SongHyun gets sent to KangNam’s group because she knows how to paddle.
KangNam: “Is it harder [to paddle] at the front or at the back?”
ByungMan: “The back.”
KangMan: “Okay, I’ll sit in front.”
In the end, he just ends up standing in the middle of the raft and commandeering the two other ladies who paddle. Lol, they can’t steer very well and KangNam does the twist as his way of steering the raft. They start losing ByungMan’s raft with their many turns.
Wow, did SongHyun jump into the water just to steer their raft? She’s like, hardcore!
KangNam’s team disembarks into muddy water and already, SongHyun loses her shoe. Why are the two teams even split?!
On the other hand, ByungMan’s team are way ahead and are exploring a side creek. The girls get tired and a little intimidated by the creepy mangrove roots but they forge ahead steadily, with ByungMan as guide. Haha, SoJin likens them to salmon moving upstream, which is not a good thing because it makes their mouth water.
They hit a bump and decide to disembark nearby. ByungMan is anxious to find shelter to prevent anyone from getting hypothermia.
Meanwhile, SongHyun’s group is still inching along, having returned from the uninhabitable place and KangNam loses his temper, wanting to cut off all the mangroves, lol. Finally, they meet the other team and SongHyun uses some huge leaves to form a make-shift shoe. She impresses me.
JiMin decides to go for a toilet break and her choice of lavatory makes the men protest since she’s covered by all of two tree saplings. Haha! Byungman tells her to go in deeper and to hurry up or the mosquitoes will get to her.
While JiMin does her business, SongHyun does an interview, revealing that she thought that the trip would be different when JiMin returns. That’s fast. And the first thing she says is: “I’ve never peed beside a person being interviewed.”
ByungMan lays out plans for creating a shelter and the teams split up to make it happen as quickly as possible. The sky doesn’t help them since it just keeps raining.
I know this is a survival show but I am so amazed just seeing them build their shelter. Why am I so amazed? This reaction is so not proportional to the difficulty of the task!
Then we take a short comedy break as ByungMan laments his short stature to Mario music. He can’t even wrap his arms around a tree! Ha! Ha! Haaa!!
Deep in the jungle, YoonYoung and HaYoung find a swarm of ants around a leaf/ fruit. Oh, that looks so gross. HaYoung reaches out to touch them and freaks a little when one gets onto her. Why would you even touch them? What if they’re nasty biters?
Later, YoonYoung has her Angelina Jolie moment, dramatically pulling a small knife out of her holster… to cut down some leaves. ByungMan looks at them, a tad bit exasperated at their slow speed and creates a long saw for HaYoung to get to the larger leaves higher up in the trees.
SongHyun sees it and creates one of her own, tying a saw to a long stick.
In an interview, she reveals that she did weight training, Pilates and even skipped meals to train for surviving hunger. That’s because joining Law of the Jungle had been her dream for two years. She’s so happy just experiencing the wild. I’m so happy just watching her adapt to it.
Elsewhere, JiMin and SoJin walk deep into the jungle to look for food but with no luck. They find something but it’s so bitter it makes SoJin feel like she has sores on her tongue from just a taste. They move on and JiMin finds a pineapple plant that she mistakes for a scallion. But they don’t even look the similar! There’s no pineapple on it though, and JiMin asks if it’s possible to grow one in 3 days, ha ha!
Later, they find some ripe sugar-fruit (looks like passionfruit to me though) and have a party, eating and collecting it.
HaYoung brings some long pieces of wood that are meant to be for scaffolding but it just looks like weapons of torture with the way she ends up poking people with it.
SongHyun on the other hand is preoccupied with felling a tree. She pulls out a wire saw from I-don’t-know-where but doesn’t have much progress with it. She’s terrible with the axe and the long saw too. She uses the last weapon in her arsenal, the short saw, and thirty minutes of hard work later, the skinny tree falls. It may be a skinny tree, but she celebrates the achievement like she’s celebrating the coming of some holy being
JiMin and SoJin return to base, exciting the others with their sugar-fruit. ByungMan opens one immediately and gives SongHyun the first bite. YoonYoung practically shivers in anticipation. They all have a taste and are fascinated with sweet-sour, jelly-like fruit, asking why nobody sells it in Korea.
While work on the main shelter continues, some of the women move elsewhere to build a women-only toilet. The only problem is that their toilet doesn’t block the view of the camera installed on the nearby tree, hee! So they get to work based on another design… but ByungMan complains that the toilet’s too close and that everything can be seen from the main shelter! HA!
The night’s getting darker and they work harder to get the shelter up but halfway, HaYoung gets stung by a scorpion. WHAT IN THE WHAT?
The local guide gets called in and luckily, it was just a young scorpion with no poison. The local doctor simply disinfects it and gives her painkillers. She’s fine, but the incident spooks the rest.
Faced with all these difficulties and fears, JiMin wavers and says she can’t do it anymore just six hours into their trip. Is she giving up?
She says that she wants to but can’t handle the boat trip back, lol. At that, the girls wallow in self-pity for a while. They’re tired, dirty and scared. They ask if this situation is the absolute worst already, but the PD just says that it isn’t. They sit on the completed shelter, but cheer up when they realise that it’s warm and comforting.
ByungMan gets to work on the bonfire, chipping at fat branches for dry wood. He asks if they have cotton and HaYoung gets up to get hers but finds them all wet… along with her money. What’d she bring so much for? You can’t even burn it!
Byungman uses a fire steel and manages to get some wood to light but can’t sustain it. At that, SongHyun brings out face oil for as fire oil. Is she Doraemon or something? They joke about using KangNam’s hair as last resort and he just lightly pulls them and they fall out like cornsilk, shocking the girls. What the heck! Stop bleaching your hair! One day, he’ll be Gollum.
With all the flammable stuff added, they manage to get the fire going, which is when JiMin smells grilled meat, making the rest perk up like meerkats. It was just a combination of SongHyun’s face oil and KangNam’s hair burning though. Oh, ew.
Byungman gets impressed by how useful makeup supplies are in the jungle when SongHyun bends down to blow the fire to strengthen it. She gets called the female-Oh JongHyuk, the guy who kept sticking his face into the fire to blow on it in another trip and was in charge of the fires. Heh.
They sit back but ByungMan continues to chop wood and experiences a close shave when the wood almost hits his man-bits. JiMin: “It almost became an all-women show.”
That lightens the atmosphere and they finally laugh heartily, relieving some stress.
KangNam, SoJin and Hayoung go in search of bugs for fish-bait and KangNam gets scared of everything, from wood to SoJin shouting, “Bug!”
The rest head to the river side for game where they find a clam and get stuck in mud. They muddy the water and wait hilariously tensely for the water to settle. JiMin just ends up muddying it after shouting at KangNam not to move.
The search the river bed for clams and JiMin seems to have some kind of underwater sensor because she pulls big, huge clams one after another like a magician pulling a rabbit out of a hat. KangNam, who had joined them, meanwhile, is terrified at the thought of touching a bug or an eel.
All of a sudden, they hear some kind of bark and think it’s a monkey. The monkeys turn out to be HaYoung and SoJin who are just round the corner laughing at their own selves for getting stuck in 30cm of water, HA!
They get out of the water and SoJin scores a live clam while trying not to fall.
Friend of the Jungle SongHyun puts on her wet shoes, gloves and a snorkeling mask and slides into the water. She is just… She’s my idol.