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Physical 100 Underground Review and Episode Recap (Spoilers)


Physical 100: Underground is the second season of the Physical: 100 series.

At a Glance

The season again starts off in South Korea with 100 contestants ranging from a variety of different sports of martial arts including both men and women. They face off each other in intense athletic games that test their physical abilities to the maximum. Failing results in elimination from advancing to the next round.

Spotlight Characters

Spotlight of the show is a former contestant from season 1, a former special forces soldier and current firefighter sergeant named Hong Beom-Seok. In season 1, he was eliminated early due to a poor strategic decision of choosing an opponent who was much larger and stronger than him, in hopes of out speeding him. His performance in season 2 was an enormous improvement in terms of sheer athleticism and tactical planning which lead him to the final round of the season.

About the Quests

Physical 100 Underground attempts to balance the games through teamwork and individual games in order to find the perfect athlete. There are also a lot of twists and turns between each round such as forming team bonds in one round, and then forcing them to compete against other the next. Eliminated teams had opportunities to revive themselves back into the game, creating a lot of surprising turn of events.

One of the gripes I had with the show is some a lot of the shots were a bit erratic and there was a lot of cutting between scenes. It’s an action show and I understand the attempt to keep the audience at the edge of their seats but some of it did feel a bit overdone.

The assortment of contestants are broken down by different groups of athletes categorized as warriors, national athletes, it bodys, superstar athletes, and athletic celebrities.

Episode Recaps

Episode 1

Quest 0: Manual Treadmill Run

Contestants run on a manual treadmill run. Goal is not speed but distance completed on the treadmill. It is a test of endurance.

  • 10 Minutes Run – Eliminate lower 50
  • 7 Minutes Run – Eliminate lower 40
  • 5 Minutes Run – Winner assigned rank 1.

Episode 2, 3

Quest  1: Arena Match

This game is similar to the game in season 1. Contestants choose from a selection of 3 stages to play a capture the ball game.


  • Playground
  • Water Stage
  • UFC Stage

Episode 4

Quest 2: 5 on 5 Maze Conquest

Contestants split off into teams of 5 to face against each other. They need to carry sand bags through a maze with 3 drop off zones with scales on them. Whoever has more weight on the scale holes the zone. The team who is holding 2 out of the 3 zones after 15 minutes wins the match. There are barrels that contain more weight that is also available to drop off into the scales.

Episode 5

Quest  2.5: Revival game

The eliminated contestants from the Maze game face off against each other to revive. The game revolves around holding one of the ten poles in the arena by hugging the symbol on the pole. Each round contestants are eliminated if they aren’t hugging the symbol. In the end, the surviving contestant gets to build a new team to revive back into the main matches.

Quest 3: Team Delegate Match

This round consists of 4 rounds with opportunities to score. During each round, contestants have the opportunity to win 3, 2 or 1 point depending what place they get for the round. Team with the least points after 4 rounds is eliminated.

Round 1: Minecart Transportation (Relay)

Cart game – 2 Contestants from each team need to push the cart to the middle of the track and attach a second cart. From there they need to push the cart to the end of the track and load it up with sandbags to bring back.

Round 2: Minecart Transportation (Single)

Same as Round 1 cart game but with a single contestant managing the track.

Episode 6, 7

Round 3: Midair Transit – Monkey bar game (Relay)

2 contestants play a monkey bar relay race where they need to swing across while pushing a bag the fastest.

Round 4: Midair Transit – Monkey bar game (Single)

Same as Round 3 monkey bar game but with a single contestant.

Episode 8

Quest 4: First-Come Roller Race

The teams are split up for this game and are competing against each other. They need to run back and forth on a track while dragging a giant roller weight 150 kg across. Slowest members are eliminated one by one until there is one left.

Episode 9

Quest 5: Finals

Round 1: Rope holding

Contestants hold onto a rope that is tied to their plaster torso that weighs 40% of their body weight. Whoever drops their torso first is eliminated.

Round 2: Infinite Squats

Contestants perform squats on a machine that loads charcoal weights. Each round the weight increases.

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