This past weekend I spent more hours than I should really admit watching Fuji TV’s 27-hour comedy marathon (and even recorded the whole thing). It’s no secret that the only Japanese TV I watch is comedy, and this year’s event was hosted by Takeshi Okamura of the duo 99, who has been my favorite comedian ever since I first came to Japan back in 1998. He had a mental breakdown last year and took a break for 6 months or so, and although he’s been back on TV since late last year, this sort of acted as a big comeback. 99 (along with SMAP member Masahiro Nakai) hosted the FNS 27-hour special 7 years ago, and it’s basically sucked since, especially the last couple of years.
I’ll say that overall it wasn’t as good as the one from 7 years ago, but there were still a lot of really fun moments, and since we have it all recorded, we still sometimes watch some of the funnier bits.
People are sometimes surprised when they find out about my love for Japanese comedy — it certainly lightens up any gathering I have with Japanese people, when I bring up the topic. I will admit that I still don’t understand 100% of what is said, which is why I tend to prefer physical comedy, but I still do like a wide variety of comedians.
Recently, when I helped judge the Core77 Design Awards, we had a nice lunch afterwards with all the judges (for our category, Interiors/Installations), and there was a designer from Shiseido who suggested I should do a PechaKucha presentation on Japanese comedians. Maybe I should.