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Japan is weird. I love it (Part 1)

Japan is weird. I love it (Part 1)



I'm not convinced any country does weird better than Japan. And when it comes to weird Japanese things, the list could go on forever. Music, fashion, video games, TV commercials, the list goes on and on and on (and I'll eventually get to a few of them). 

However, my one new discovery that I want to draw your attention to is this: 

From the country (and specifically the network) that brought us Takeshi Castle and Ninja Warrior, we now get this incredibly inspired and hilarious new gameshow format. 

Skateboarding is cool, but also kind of niche. I remember watching abit of X Games when I was younger, but all that high-flying shenanigans seemed so foreign. And yet somehow, Kasso manages to make skateboarding (by a bunch of professionals, no less) seem so much more accessible - I reckon its something to do with plenty of on-camera failure. 

In particular, the standout segment is the second stage: Uzushio. The skaters have to skate down a descending and narrowing spiral path, and falling off means wiping out in a dirty pond. Seems easy enough, right? These are professionals! They know what they are doing! But of course, in truth it is devilishly difficult, with spectacular failure often the result. 

This is Japanese weirdness at its brilliant best. Who was the genius who thought this up!? And why hasn't anyone done this earlier?? Why don't more sports involve a dirty pond??? 

And it is also this slightly absurd nature of the course, and the entire competition as a whole, that makes it such a wholesome watch. Though there's real money on the line, the competitors are really just having a laugh, while still displaying incredible athletic skill.

These are Japan's top skaters, quite literally the very best in their business, somehow convinced to partake in a gameshow specifically engineered to make them fail. What a laugh. Japan, keep doing you. 

Episode 2 is here: 

~ Desmond


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  • Japan is weird. I love it (Part 3)

    I'm guessing we're all pretty familiar with mascots. Maybe not up close and personal, but at least the simple idea/concept of them. Mickey Mouse at Disneyland, the Michelin Man, even Singa, Singapore's own mascot to champion the National Courtesy Campaign.  But Japan, ah, Japan. Japan takes mascots to a whole new level.  Dubbed Yuru-chara, Japan appears obsessed with mascots. There are mascots for everything. Prefectures, museums, even the police. And, at least until 2020, there was an



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