Family Outing

Family Outing Season 1

Family Outing Season 1

(Link updated 6/23/14; please comment if links do not work! Thank you.)


One of my favorite Korean variety shows is Family Outing (패밀리가 떴다). It’s a hilarious two-season show that aired several years ago and still provides fantastic information on life in the Korean countryside. A core group of celebrities – from singers like Kim Jong Kook, Yoon Jong Shin, BIGBANG’s Kang Daesung and Lee Hyori (a solo artist originally from Fin.K.L) to models and actors like Lee Chunhee, Kim Sooro, and Park Yejin to the “Nation’s MC” Yoo Jae Suk – along with celebrity guests go to different rural villages and small towns throughout South Korea and spend about a day and a half living in the home of an elderly couple. They take care of the couple’s chores and house while the elders are sent on a vacation.

Note: The core group changed during the show; Kim Jong Kook was unable to begin immediately, Park Ye Jin and Lee Chunhee left to pursue solo activities, and Park Haejin and Park Siyeon filled the empty spots. 

And sometimes they do things like create a "family band" and perform for villagers.

And sometimes they do things like creating a “family band” and then perform personally composed songs for the local villagers.


Family Outing is a gold mine of language-learning and culture exposure. Each episode is full of interesting activities – ever wondered how kimchi is made? Ever seen a really old machine heat up and pop rice so explosively that it make Yoo Jae Suk want to run away? Ever learned how to prepare squid after catching it yourself? Ever seen a pretty, delicate Korean actress named Park Yejin pop an eye out of a fish? (These celebrities have to get the ingredients and make the meals besides performing the chores and playing games. I’ll be honest – there was a scandal about how real their ingredients-gathering was, but that shouldn’t stop you from enjoying the show or learning Korean!) This is just a tiny peek at what you’ll see in Family Outing.

"One Man" Kim Jong Kook catches "One Fish"

“One Man” Kim Jong Kook catches “One Fish”


Family Outing wouldn't be Family Outing without lots of ridiculous and hilarious games to play.

Family Outing wouldn’t be Family Outing without lots of ridiculous and hilarious games.

Family Outing has the trademark subtitling of a Korean variety show, too, making it so rich for the language-learner. Much of what is said is also subtitled or rephrased in Korean. When a celebrity is surprised, the screen flashes a huge “SURPRISED” in Korean. When someone yells SHIMBATA – translated basically as eureka or a cry of victory – it’s subtitled in big, easy hangul. Don’t ignore these and only read the English subtitles – absorb all the Korean you can. Reading Korean subtitles will help with your language comprehension.

Chunderella choom choom chooming...clumsily.

Chunderella and Step-mother Sooro choom choom chooming…clumsily. 바보야~!


This show is funny. It’s so funny that you might want to warn others around you before you watch it, or else you’ll startle them with fits of maniacal laughter. You’ll love everyone on the show so much that by the time you finish the first season, you’ll feel like you’re saying goodbye to an actual family that you’re a part of. You’ll begin to understand the social interactions between old and young, male and female, in Korea. You’ll pick up slang, vocabulary, quick phrases. You’ll appreciate Korean culture for its tradition and its beauty. And you’ll find that watching Family Outing – while being a great learning experience – gives you that smile and that laugh that you need after a long day.


Yoo Jae Suk, the Nation's MC, endures a lot of burdensome moments for the sake of the audience's laughs...and because he's a really, really nice person in real life.

Yoo Jae Suk, the Nation’s MC, endures a lot of burdensome moments for the sake of the audience’s laughs…and because he’s a really, really nice person in real life.




Write BIGBANG’s name in Korean

how to write BIGBANG

Photo from BIGBANG’s Alive Tour in New Jersey, taken by site’s author.
Edited in Photoshop 11.

Baby Don’t Cry by BIGBANG’s Daesung (대성)

Lyrics created in Photoshop 11. Please credit if you remove for your own purposes.

Lyrics created in Photoshop 11. Please credit if you remove for your own purposes.

sumanheun saramdeul tteonagadoi noraen yeongwonhae ne gyeote (hamkke halgeoya)

Even though many people will leave you, this song will stay with you forever (well do it together)

geu manteon chingudeul da tteonadoyeogi nan ne yeope gyesok seo isseulgeoya

Even if many friends all leave you, I’ll continue to stand here by your side

Baby don’t cry baby don’t cry baby don’t cry

eonjenga deo bitnalgeoya Give me your smile

Someday you will surely shine; just give me your smile

Baby don’t cry baby don’t cry baby don’t cry

hanbeonman deo nal wihae Just give me your smile

One more time for me, just give me your smile

Translation credit to:

Write Daesung’s name in Korean (BIGBANG)

Write Daesung's name in Korean (BIGBANG)

강 대성
Kang Daesung
Photo from BIGBANG’s official Facebook page.
Edited in Photoshop 11.

The Little Things Count

안녕하세요! There’s one little way that I keep my Korean learning active, even when I’m too busy or lazy to do actual Talk To Me In Korean lessons, or practice writing in my wonderful big notebook, or when I’m so incredibly tired that I can’t even stay awake to exercise my Korean “ear” by watching Family Outing and trying to pick out words…

Well, I said one little way, but it actually ends up paying off big time. I have gradually put my language settings into Korean. My iPod is in Korean. My iPhone is in Korean. My Gmail account, my Twitter, my Facebook, and even my Skype are in Korean. It sounds scary – what if you try to change settings and delete something, or friend a weirdo, or Tweet gibberish and lose followers? Or, horror of horrors, you can’t figure out how to make your iPod stop repeating a song over and over?

It’s really not bad at all. If you’ve learned the basics of hangul, it actually is a huge help for reading. You’re constantly checking your phone, listening to music, or scrolling through an inbox that seems unending. A fair amount of the hangul that you’re reading is also not even strictly in “Korean.” For example, my iPod says 비디오 for video. “Bi-di-o”. On my phone, I tap the green icon labeled 메시지 (me-si-ji) to check my text messages. But because the other words are all actual Korean words, you begin to subconsciously pick up that 설정 is Setting and 음악 is Music.

I recommend that you don’t throw all your electronics and emails and whatnot into a big wad of semi-understandable Korean, though. Take your time. Put your iPod in Korean, where the worst thing you can do is choose Playlist instead of Artist because you forgot the Korean word. Once you’re comfortable with that, but not too comfortable, put your email in Korean. Your Facebook. Skype. Your phone. Suddenly, you’ll realize you’re surrounded constantly by little Korean lessons.

To be safe, if you commonly have settings that you change on your phone and you don’t want to be caught translating your entire Settings in a huge rush just to tweak something, make a note somewhere with carefully laid out steps of how to change those settings. I wanted to make sure I could check my data usage easily, so I made a note or 메모 on my phone that gave me the steps to checking it. I don’t need the note anymore, and I know all the Korean words involved in the process.

An extra muffin for you: When your email, phone, or iPod are in Korean, chances are that the annoying person who always snatches your phone to play with it or tries to prank you by hacking your email will have a much harder time. I can’t remember all the times someone has grabbed my phone and then, a moment later, handed it back in disappointment because they had no idea how to use it. But for you? Not in English? Noooot a problem. ^_^ 감사합니다!