TV

Japanese dancer becomes Internet sensation, and all he had to do was defy most laws of physics

After Japanese “performer” Miu GaGa’s laughably over-enthusiastic “dance” appearance on America’s Got Talent, Japan was in desperate need of a representative to show Las Vegas – where the show is based – and America at large that many Japanese, in fact, can dance. And as it happens, a handful of them can even literally defy the laws of physics when they do it.

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Mammoth GameCenter CX 10th anniversary project underway

“GameCenter CX”–also known as “Retro Game Master” in the West– has captured the hearts and minds of literally millions of video game fans across the globe since first airing in 2003. The premise of the show is simple: middle-aged, self-confessed game otaku and part-time comedian Shinya Arino pits himself against a series of treasured but often fiendishly difficult old-school video games, playing through them with the help of his cheeky “assistant directors”, a pile of snacks and stack of cooling towelettes to stick to his forehead.

The show has already spawned nine DVD boxsets in its native Japan, with English translations of many of the shows made available to Western audiences both in DVD format and online. But now, the show’s parent company has announced that a special 10th anniversary project is underway that will purportedly take an entire year to complete.

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Hyundai Ad Uses Suicide to Promote New Car, Causes Outrage and Sadness in the UK

As much as we might bemoan their very existence when they interrupt our favourite TV shows or appear ad nauseam prior to YouTube clips, when done well ads can be genuinely entertaining. With each shot written, debated, edited and otherwise laboured over sometimes for hundreds of hours, successful ads become pop culture in their own right and are often of higher quality than the shows whose commercial crevices they are stuffed into.

An ad recently aired in the UK, however, become a talking point for all the wrong reasons when it depicted a man trying to kill himself by breathing in the exhaust fumes produced by what transpires to be a particularly environmentally friendly type of vehicle: Hyundai’s iX35.

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Perfect the Art of Laziness! Get Your Sloth On with New Eyewear from Sanco


Everyone’s had one of those days when they just don’t feel like getting out of bed. Well “rare things” online store Sanco is now offering a must-have item for just such occasions: GORODEY2 Eyewear, glasses that allow you to remain flat on your back and still be entertained.

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Do You Know Where Japan Is? These Turkish Men Aren’t So Sure

It’s a shame that our man Mr. Sato didn’t talk a little more about his own country during his recent visit to Turkey. In a video currently attracting a lot of attention here in Japan, a Turkish television crew hit the streets of Istanbul to ask its residents whether they knew the geographical location of Japan. As it happens, despite the amount of media attention that Japan has received in the past couple of years, the average man on the street in Turkey is still a little off the mark when it comes to the home of sushi and Super Mario…

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Onomatotastic! Sony’s Portable Games Console Gets a Cool New Ad 【Video】

Speakers and learners of the Japanese language will no doubt be familiar with giongo and gitaigo, onomatopoeic words that are used to imitate or describe real-world sounds or sensations, respectively.

For many English speakers, sentences like “And the rain was falling like ‘tccccchhhh’, and my heart was going ‘boom boom boom,'” might come across as informal at best, or perhaps even suggest that the speaker is not especially articulate. In Japanese, though, onomatopoeia is employed far more frequently in both spoken and written communication, and this new commercial from Sony announcing a price cut for its Vita portable games console has it in droves.

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Korean TV Star Gets Lost in the Moment, Stands to Attention During Variety Show

Spontaneous physical arousal, also known in the western world as “random wood” amongst other monikers, has happened to most men at some point in their lives. For those just entering adulthood, it can can be painfully embarrassing – and in some cases even lead to some taking drastic action – but thankfully the majority of us are not TV stars being watched by millions when it happens.

As part of a romantic comedy sketch acted out on a recent Korean variety show, popular TV personality Gili Kim embraced beautiful Jimin Kim and lifted her up in the air. From there, tragically, physiological instincts took over, leaving poor Gili with no way of concealing his excitement. The images were soon shared thousands of times via Twitter and Korean Internet bulletin boards, prompting the star to speak out and admit that he may have become lost in the moment.

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Japan Celebrates Premiere of Game of Thrones with Ice Castle Theater — in the Worst Location Possible

Some of you in the English-speaking world have probably heard of a little fantasy TV series called Game of Thrones. It’s won a few awards here and there, has a fairly enthusiastic fan base, and — let’s face it — is all around a huge freakin’ deal.

While America and the rest of the world fill their goblets with mead in anticipation of the March 31 premiere of season 3, Japan is finally getting their first taste of the series when season 1 airs on January 27 — and they’re promoting it by holding free screenings of the first episode in a castle built from actual blocks of ice.

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Why Don’t People Like the New Iron Chef? Was it the Fish Semen?

Back in the 90s, I was a huge fan of the Iron Chef when it got imported to North American television.  Although I was normally uninterested in cooking programs, something about the drama and pageantry that went on in Kitchen Stadium struck a chord.

The show was even imported to western countries who tuned it to suit their own tastes, and a lot of others around the world got into those weekly culinary competitions.

So when Fuji TV announced the return of Iron Chef to primetime television, a lot of buzz was generated. However, their two-hour debut claimed just a 10% share of the ratings, half of what the original program regularly held. It got worse from there as later episodes slunk to around 7%.

So what happened to our beloved Iron Chef? Everyone’s got an opinion and so do we.

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TV Blunder Labels Japan’s Potential Next Prime Minister a Pervert

Running for election in Japan isn’t easy. But when your face is shown alongside titles like “pervert” and “molester,” it’s probably a lot harder than it ought to be.

Japan’s political system is a mess right now and, despite having seen six prime ministers come and go in as many years, the country is headed for an election next month, with one-time PM Shinzo Abe putting himself forward to be re-elected.

The politician was made a laughing-stock earlier this week, however, when the Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS) early morning TV show Asazuba accidentally displayed Mr. Abe’s photo alongside a news report about a sex offender’s arrest.

Despite having no relation to the incident whatsoever, Mr. Abe’s face filled viewers’ screens along with the shocking titles, prompting the nation to spit out its corn flakes, or at the very least dribble a bit of natto onto the table.

Suffice to say, the politician was not pleased, and, suspecting this to be part of a “campaign of negativity”, took to his public Facebook page to tear TBS a new one…

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It’s Not Like on TV: “80% of Korean Men Without a Car and Home of Their Own Never Find Love”

As Korean culture becomes ever more popular throughout the world, with Korean romantic dramas in particular finding millions of fans in Asia, it may come as a shock to some that “cars and property” are listed by many Korean women as two of the most important factors when looking for love.

During a “Korean Drama special” version of a popular dating show that aired in China last week, fans of Korea’s heartwarming love stories had their dreams smashed by Korean men and women who gave their honest opinions of the state of love and romance in their homeland. Rather than handsome young men in suits plucking plain-faced girls from the crowd or rogueish artists finding love with the understanding girl next-door, cash, cars and cribs factored into the equation for more than Chinese audiences had been led to believe, filling the studio with gasps and the sound of broken dreams scattering across the floor...

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French Commentator’s “Radiation” Joke Angers Japanese Government

Following Japan’s 1-0 victory over France in the friendly football (soccer to our North American readers) match last week, a French variety show host made a joke that has touched a nerve here in Japan.

Alluding to Japanese goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima’s impressive skills on the field, the show presented an edited image of the player, showing him with four arms.

The show’s presenter then suggested that Kawashima’s additional limbs might be the result of “the Fukushima effect” and that they had grown after exposure to radiation leaked from the nuclear plant damaged by the earthquake and tsunami in March 2011. While the joke went down well during the show, many Japanese are understandably very upset…

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Get Naked and Prove Your Brotherhood with “Fist of the Gods” Rock-Paper-Scissors Game

Japanese people love rock-paper-scissors – or as it’s known in Japan, janken – and use it to settle all forms of disputes, such as deciding who gets the last slice of cake or what to name your baby.

Recently, a similar game called “Fist of the Gods” has been gaining traction in Japan.

Whereas janken came from China and is used to make impartial choices, “Fist of the Gods” is ritual said to have originated in ancient Greece as a way for two men to confirm their camaraderie.

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