Mr. Wake

Are you understand?

Location: Kamakura, Kanagawa, Japan

Sunday, February 27, 2005


One of the few (two) Japanese shows that I will watch if it happens to be on and I happen to be doing nothing is Tensai! Shimura Dobutsuen, which means "Genius! Shimura's Zoo." They have an arrangement common to Japanese television of showing video of off the wall things followed by a panel discussion. The panel consists of tubby, goofy guys with dyed hair and dumb, pretty girls. OK, I don't know that they're dumb. I can't understand anything they say, which is definitly more my issue than theirs.

The theme of Genius! is animals. Among other things, every week they have a video of a chimpanzee named Pan-kun and a bulldog named James, both juveniles. Pan-kun is sent on some kind of errand (Here's money. Buy cheese. Or, more interestingly, buy an octopus) and he has to drag James along on a leash. They usually blow it, because they are animals. Pan-kun couldn't tell the cheese from the butter; James ate all the mushrooms they'd collected. But they were able to come back with an live octopus, which is the one task that I would not have been able to do. Most animals on Genius! are discussed; however, the octopus was quickly boiled and eaten, mostly by humans, but Pan-kun and James were given a share.

Anyhoo, what jumped out at me on the last episode was the Q&A session with the kids. Boys and girls ranging from about 6 to about 10 were neatly arranged on risers and were told to present their questions to the panel of chubby guys and pretty girls. First question from a ten-year-old girl was for one of the female panelists, Megumi.

"I heard one of your breasts weighs 1 kilogram. Is that true?"

"I had them weighed and they actually weigh 1.5 kilgrams each."

"What do you eat to make them so big?"

"Excellent question. Liver."

Next question. 7-year-old boy.

"Where does a snake's tale start?"

"Good question. Let's get the herpitologist."

Cut to: Medium Shot. Herpitologist.

"The snake's tale starts just behind his butt-hole. Which begs the question, how do you find a snake's butt-hole?" He holds up a snake and points. "It's here."

At this point a real, live, enormous python is brought in a poured onto the floor in front of the kids. A lesser herpitologist in the studio finds his (the snake's) butt-hole and shows it to the kids. The kids, tubby guys, and cute girls, gather around and pet the snake.

Cut to: Pan-kun and James. The mission was to meet their trainer on the far side of the park. They had to buy tickets, take a boat, buy more tickets, and take a train up a mountain. They succeeded, but that idiot Pan-kun bought three adult tickets instead of two children's.


Anonymous Mama said...

Hey Wake: Maybe they should let James buy the tickets. You just can't trust chimpanzees with numbers. At least he bought tickets which I'm still wondering at. That was one funny show. Thanks for including it.

2:45 PM, March 12, 2005  

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