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Ninja Warrior (Sasuke)


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#1

Lantern7

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Posted Jan 17, 2007 @ 2:13 AM

The Basics: One hundred world class athletes (and the occasional nutter) come to Japan to complete a glorified obstacle course. The big problem? If more than ten competitors complete the first stage, it's a small miracle. Hell, if you make it past the Warped Wall in the first stage, then you are a legit athlete.

The Hook: While it looks goofing, it's not presented as an MXC clone. The subtitling is inconsistant, but you don't need translation to understand the overwrought announcer. The best part is when somebody falls into the water, and you see the crowd laugh afterwards. In later stages, the laughter is replaced by the grimaces of the other players, watching as one of their own fails. The obstacles are wicked insane...so far, I've only seen two people reach the final stage, which is a spider climb and a trip up a rough rope. You complete that in 30 seconds, you're a champion. How many champs in the show's history? Two...and another that missed in by eleven-hundreths of a second.

The View: Ninja Warrior airs on G4, and it's the third-best reason to watch that network aside from X-Play and the Arrested Development repeats. It usually airs on Tuesdays at midnight for one hour...but there are minimarathons on the weekends. Really, you have got to see this show.
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#2

Stinger97

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Posted Jan 17, 2007 @ 3:58 AM

A friend sent me a clip of this the other day, and I was absolutely enthralled by it. I've heard that some American athletes have appeared, and of course haven't finished the course.
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#3

SVNBob

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Posted Jan 17, 2007 @ 8:12 AM

How many champs in the show's history? Two...and another that missed in by eleven-hundreths of a second.

Actually, the second champ was Makoto Nagano, the same guy that missed by .11 seconds.
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#4

RainIsBeautiful

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Posted Jan 17, 2007 @ 8:59 AM

I've heard that some American athletes have appeared, and of course haven't finished the course.

I saw the Hamm twins on it a couple of months ago. One of them (Morgan?) finished the first round. This show is crack -- worse than Next! :D

Edited by RainIsBeautiful, Jan 17, 2007 @ 8:59 AM.

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#5

Lantern7

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Posted Jan 17, 2007 @ 2:51 PM

Stinger97...those would be the Hamm twins and decathlete Paul Tavek, who rocked the living crap out of the first stage. And barely anybody makes it to the third stage, so there's no real distinction between Americans, Japanese, and that one Bulgarian gymnast.

ETA Tavek's clip. Also...the biggest knock I have is how the show's edited for the third stage. If there's one competitor left, and there's only three minutes of show left, then I know he ain't making it to the fourth stage.

Edited by Lantern7, Jan 17, 2007 @ 2:54 PM.

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#6

Lantern7

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Posted Mar 17, 2007 @ 2:02 PM

Heads up...there's a marathon going on right now on G4, and new episodes start airing Monday at 6:30 p.m. Also, G4's been running up great commercials, including scenes with at least one guy in the final stage and some poor bastard cracking through one of the weighted walls, only to have it land on his leg. Should be awesome.
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#7

SanLynn

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Posted Mar 17, 2007 @ 3:05 PM

It doesn't matter how many times I've seen the episodes I watch them over and over again.

I'm really looking forward to the new season and hoping to see Makoto Nagano back to try for a repeat performance as he is my favorite competitor. I'm certain I'm not alone on that one.

I wonder if we'll see anyone from the US compete this year? I've noticed that G4 is running it 6:30 and 10:30 weeknights for the forseeable future (well as far as my DVR will go into the futura anyway). I hope that means we'll see a little more indepth coverage this time.

ETA: I just watched the "Inside Look" special and Nagano is there (yay!) but competing with a sprained ankle. And to answer my own question about US competitors there is a US Marine in the field. Also, incidentally, the first round looks tougher than ever. There have been a lot of changes to the course.

Edited by SanLynn, Mar 17, 2007 @ 3:38 PM.

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#8

Decadent Sundae

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Posted Mar 17, 2007 @ 11:42 PM

I'm so relieved to hear there are going to be new episodes - every time Tivo grabs an episode, I keep hoping it's not one I've seen a hundred times, and each time I recognize the episode within 30 seconds - kind of like Cash in the Attic (ok, so I have a weird accumulation of tastes. I'm seeing a therapist about it.)
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#9

Lantern7

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Posted Mar 19, 2007 @ 6:19 PM

So far, so weird. I got to see a few token females go out right away, guys fuck up on the Quintuple Step, and the world's toughest transsexual wipe out on the Rolling Log. Only three people cleared the first stage, including a guy who wants to be the strongest comedian in Japan...he nearly wiped out on the Warped Wall and finished with 0.5 seconds left.
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#10

SanLynn

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Posted Mar 19, 2007 @ 7:57 PM

I also found it odd that they said at the beginning that in the last competition everyone failed which makes me think I missed a competition. The last one I saw was the one when Nagano went all the way.

And the stage one obstacles are completely different than the ones in that special that aired Sunday afternoon.

So what the heck was that special all about it. Are there multiple competitions we'll be seeing this time around? This whole thing is very odd so far.
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#11

SVNBob

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Posted Mar 19, 2007 @ 10:45 PM

I'm not 100% sure, but from what I can tell, this is an older tournament than what's already been aired here. So new-to-us, but not new. With the elite to come in the next episode or two, I'll be able to tell for sure.

I've seen the strong comic before, and as I recall from the profile they did on him in that episode, he'd cleared stage one once, then lost out two or so tourneys in a row before that segment aired. So I think this is the time he did clear stage one.

As for multiple tournaments, I'd bet that we are getting more than one, just like the first batch. From looking at the Sasuke entry in Wikipedia, we've seen tournaments 14-17 already, so there's lots of history to go back through, including Akiyama beating the final stage.
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#12

Decadent Sundae

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Posted Mar 20, 2007 @ 2:09 PM

They did mention that one of the guys had made every single tournament, and that this was his 9th try, so I assumed that it was the ninth series.
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#13

SanLynn

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Posted Mar 20, 2007 @ 6:05 PM

ok, now it all makes sense. All the competitors look younger than they have on the reruns and during this competition Nagano is 29 and I believe he conquered the tower when he was 34 so that would make this competition the winter 2001 (or maybe 2002 depending on Nagono's birth date) tournament

Not knowing was freaking me out so I'm glad they mentioned Nagano's age.

Edited by SanLynn, Mar 20, 2007 @ 6:06 PM.

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#14

Lantern7

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Posted Mar 21, 2007 @ 6:24 PM

You can tell Spider Walk was new the way the competitors went for the stick spray. I would've kept the conveyor crawl and Globe Grasp, but I can see why they were taken off. And naturally, Nagano goes farther than everybody else, proving that he is the manliest man in all of Japan. How can anybody compete with somebody who does handstand push-ups on the mast of his boat?
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#15

fasces7

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Posted Mar 21, 2007 @ 6:38 PM

How can anybody compete with somebody who does handstand push-ups on the mast of his boat?


The guy is just hard core well beyond the normal standard of hard core. It was the sideways head stand from the mast of his boat that made me just sort of stare in disbelief. I'll be interested to see if he can repeat.

Edited by fasces7, Mar 21, 2007 @ 6:40 PM.

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#16

Lantern7

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Posted Mar 27, 2007 @ 12:26 AM

Another season in the books...you know it's rough when the famed Nagano wipes out in the first round. Only five would-be warriors made it to stage two, and all of them finished with less than ten seconds left. I'm glad the Tarzan Swing got taken out...it didn't feel right after the Warped Wall.
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#17

SanLynn

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Posted Mar 28, 2007 @ 7:54 AM

I hate the Tarzan Swing. I'm so glad it's not in the current competitions but I'm very disappointed to see it back in the one airing right now. I really hate that obstacle.

I do think it's very interesting to see how the bridge of blades is coming into shape, first the big rock, then the dancing tiles thing and now it's the rolling bridge. I'll be interested to see what incarnation it takes next.
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#18

Lantern7

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Posted Mar 28, 2007 @ 8:35 PM

New season, and we matched five finalists inside of 70 competitors. Would've been six, but the Bruce Lee wannabe just had to show off on the course, and he missed the buzzer by seconds. He did show a novel way to deal with the Tarzan Swing...skip it altogether by lunging for the final rope.

Damn, is a woman ever going to make it to the second stage? And I don't mean the "world's toughest transsexual"...I kinda cringe looking at her. Of course, the ballet guy in the thong brings out the worst in the announcer, so that schmuck's probabky the most offense.
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#19

SVNBob

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Posted Mar 28, 2007 @ 11:14 PM

I just recently saw the AOTS Insider special, and Zach did interview the one Kunoichi champion. (Kunoichi is the female-only version of Sasuke.) If any woman has a chance of getting past Stage One, she does.

I also saw a YouTube clip of the ends of the last several tournaments, featuring the final competitors and where they were stopped. The clip didn't end with Nagano's win though. After that, they showed a long shot of stage 4...falling down and being replaced by a larger structure. (There was a similar shot in the Insider special.) No close up's of the new tower, but I have a feeling that the new Stage 4's gonna make the old one look easy...
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#20

SanLynn

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Posted Mar 29, 2007 @ 2:24 PM

Yikes, did they do the same thing after Akiyama beat the course? When they finally do show the latest competition it should be very interesting.

Speaking of the AOTS Insider special I saw them interview Yamada so it looks like once again his "if I don't complete the first stage I'm gonna quit" promise from last year didn't hold up.

That's good because it's not Ninja Warrior without MR. Ninja Warrior.
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#21

SVNBob

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Posted Mar 30, 2007 @ 2:11 AM

If they did redesign Stage 4 after Akiyama beat it, it wasn't as radical a redesign as the most recent one.

There are certain "All-Star"* and Elite* competitors that make it not the same if they're missing. Mr. Ninja Warrior is high on that list. Nagano too. Probably why he showed up for the latest tournament even with a twisted ankle.

*I've heard both these terms in the VO, but I use them a little differently.

To me, the Elite are the men that regularly make Stages 2 and 3, and some have even made 4. The bad-asses, if you're Zach. Nagano, Yamada, Shiratori, etc.

The "All-Stars" are the competitors that keep coming back year after year, even though they can't get past Stage 1, sometimes not even past the first obstacle. The Octopus and the Butterfly, and that one TV announcer in his early 50s that almost made it last time are on this list.
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#22

Lantern7

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Posted Apr 3, 2007 @ 12:35 AM

Another season ended tonight. Nagano ended it by failing to conquer the fourth stage, but ir wasn't like it missed by eleventh-hundreths of a second...so looks like we have that to look forward to.

ETA: New season, this time with hills to start and a plank right before the Jump Hang. Got to see evidence of the Kunouchi version, as its champion ended up racking herself on Jump Hang. World's Toughest Transexual ended up getting past that, but hir quest ended on Warped Wall. Three players beat Stage One, and poor Kennikin the Komedian barely missed making the cut.

Edited by Lantern7, Apr 3, 2007 @ 8:51 PM.

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#23

SVNBob

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Posted Apr 3, 2007 @ 10:34 PM

One of the 3 was the "Iron Firefighter with 3% body fat" in his first appearance. From this run, it's easy to see why he becomes an Elite.

But there's one thing about him that bothers me. He's from Gifu, as is the other firefighter that's among the Elite. But did they know each other from before the competition? Are they from the same firehouse? Did the one inspire the other to compete? Lots of questions there.

The Kunochi competitor wasn't a champion as she didn't hit the final button in time. Not .11 seconds short, but in that area. But in her post elim interview, it was stated that no woman had made it past the Jump Hang. So that means that the tranny is the only competitor sans penis that's gone beyond that obstacle on the course.
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#24

Lantern7

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Posted Apr 5, 2007 @ 6:51 PM

Wow...fast forward city today. They showed a few guys making it past Stage 2, along with Mr. Ninja Warrior ("Sasuke-San"?) getting disqualifed because he forgot to take off his gloves before the Spider Walk. I liked his reaction hitting the buzzer: "I made it! Yeah, I made-wait, how come I'm not getting the smoke? What the hell?!?"

Stage Three? Professor Ninja Warrior ("Sasuke Sensai"?) makes it, fast-forward through all but one other (Bunpei) failing, then Nagano stomping the hell out of the stage. That's right...three guys in Stage Four. And this was the season where Nagano messed up. If the rope wasn't twirling, he'd have the buzzer with maybe a second to spare.
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#25

SanLynn

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Posted Apr 5, 2007 @ 9:11 PM

I wasn't too happy with the fast forwards especially since I missed seeing Takeda and he's one of my favorites.

What I've noticed about watching these older competitions is that some of the competitors (Professor Ninja warrior especially) are no longer competing and I wonder why. Professor Ninja warrior in particular seemed like he was very gung ho and into the competition and now all of the sudden he's gone. Why?

SVNBob I share your questions about the firefighters. I've wondered that since I started watching Sasuke. Maybe one day we'll get the answers.
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#26

RockLobster

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Posted Apr 5, 2007 @ 9:20 PM

YES!!!! Sooooo excited that there is a forum for this show. Damn this show is addictive as hell, I yell at the tv more than when I watched the world cup last summer. Eeeeee...felt so bad for Nagano today. He's my favorite (lurve the clips of him using his boat as a training ground) and so is that firefighter from Gifu (the first one-Takeda I think)--love that orange, and they don't call 'em pants for nothing.

My favorite stage has to be the first...although I have to look away from the two dancers wearing thongs, especially when they are doing the log roll. Having to watch spread buttocks roll down a hill makes me feel like I'm turning into a gay man, which is quite a feat since I'm straight and a woman.

Edited by RockLobster, Apr 5, 2007 @ 9:26 PM.

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#27

SanLynn

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Posted Apr 6, 2007 @ 5:51 PM

Oh I felt so bad for Nagano too and I could tell exactly where he made his mistakes that cost him just enough time on his run. He's my favorite by far. Takeda is my second favorite as well but pretty much I like all the elite competitors. Nagano is the guy I definitely tune in for though.

I turn away when those guys in the thongs do their runs too and I always feel bad rooting for them to fail but I just don't ever want to see any of them past the first stage. Thankfully most of the competitors on the newer versions are completely dressed.

I really like the changes to the first stage on this one we're watching now. I like that we've now got the actual bridge of blades and that prism tilt is pretty interesting. I wouldn't mind seeing that return. The changes to the jump hang were... interesting. I wonder if we'll get one more look at that before they go back to the cargo net jump hang. I'm not sure how I feel about that. It almost seems too difficult for the first stage if that makes any sense. Not that any of the obstacles, especially the jump hang are easy but at least with the cargo net you have more of a target than those hanging ropes.

And I was shocked, absolutely shocked that two of the competitors actually took the rolling log with them into the water. I wonder how that got so off track. That was actually a gasp out loud moment for me.
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#28

fasces7

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Posted Apr 6, 2007 @ 6:05 PM

is a woman ever going to make it to the second stage?


I've been wondering about that myself. I don't think I've ever seen a woman pass the rolling log. I could be wrong about that. That kind of surprises me, given that women should, in theory, be able to get a better grip with their legs. Maybe it's all a matter of upper body strength and wider hips (with women having proporitionally wider hips than men) aren't as useful as wider shoulders.

Edited by fasces7, Apr 6, 2007 @ 6:06 PM.

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#29

Lantern7

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Posted Apr 6, 2007 @ 7:11 PM

Wasn't Prism Tilt an alternative pop group from the mid-80s? I liked it. Jump Hang with the ropes? Not so much. I thought the guys who took the log deserved a do-over, but I'm guessing that it is concievable to fall off and take the log in the process.

Curious...do the competitions take place in the span of one day? Does the original broadcast cover the whole thing, or is it broken up into episodic format?
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#30

SVNBob

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Posted Apr 8, 2007 @ 6:40 PM

From what I can tell from the Wikipedia article, the entire competition is a one-day affair twice a year, and airs in its entirety as a 3-hour special (with some edits for time) a short time later. So why we're getting only 3 half-hour episodes for some tournaments is odd.
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