Do you enjoy watching amazing feats of strength, agility, and willpower?
Do you enjoy watching people fail in incredibly hilarious ways?
Do you enjoy listening to Japanese commentators?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, then I have the perfect show for you: Ninja Warrior. And I'm not talking about the NBC version American Ninja Warrior that's hit prime time recently (though that is a pretty good adaptation, if I must say so.) I'm talking about the original Ninja Warrior challenge straight from Japan.
Ninja Warrior is broadcast in several countries across the world, including the US. It films the twice annual Sasuke tournament in Japan, which is widely regarding as one of the most difficult obstacle courses in the world, if not the most difficult. It's also one of the most amazing things I have ever watched on television.
Every challenge (and there have been 27 now, I believe) consists of four intense stages. 100 challengers start at stage one. So, that's 2700 challengers total. Of those 2700; only three have ever beaten all four stages. Generally, 85% or more of the challengers fail at the first stage. Some in truly spectacular ways.
For a pretty decent overview of the first stage (as of tournament 20) and some legos click here
Here's a sample of just how difficult it is to win this tournament.
I personally have been watching Ninja Warrior for about 7 years, as periodically as I can. It is a difficult show to find. So far in the US I've only seen it broadcast on G4 and the internet. As it's grown in popularity in the US, G4 started doing the American Ninja Warrior challenge. Initially, they held trials and sent the winners to the tournament in Japan. Now it's an NBC prime time show, and the winner gets $500,000.
If you can only watch the NBC show, you definitely should. It's pretty amazing. But if you get a chance, look up the Japanese version too. You won't regret that you did.
Until next time,