Monday, January 12, 2009

Live Action Super Mario (or Why The Japanese Are Infinitely More Creative Than We Are)

/gamer recently posted the following video of a live-action re-creation of Super Mario Brothers (with Mario taking a slight detour out of the TV and into the real world and past a "would be racist anywhere but in Japan" black-face Barack Obama):

This clip comes from a show called Kasou Taishou, also known as "Kinchan and Katori Shingo's All Japan Costume Grand Prix". (Man, that Katori Shingo is everywhere. Nin!).

I used to LOVE watching this show whenever it played on NTV, which I think only happened a few times a year. (I'd give you the exact dates but I never did figure out how to read a TV guide out there. Did I mention they have, like, 3 alphabets??)

The program has the feel of a big talent show, with groups of people performing skits for a panel of celebrity judges. While there can be different types of skits, most of them usually involve creating scenes and some really cool special effects using kurokos, or stagehands dressed in black against a black background, a technique which actually has its roots in traditional kabuki theater.

Here's one of the more popular (and clever) Kasou Taishou clips from shows past, Matrix Ping Pong:

It was obvious that the performers put a ton of work into their skits so it was always so rewarding to watch them react when they got a great score. (Yeah, I'm a sap.)

Of course, this year, Ponyo won.

Ponyo always wins.

Related Posts:
Ponyo on a Cliff By the Sea (In a House, a Very Big House in the Country)

The stupid, it burns.


Unknown said...

How about the English version of Ponyo, complete with Matt Damon, Tina Fey, Cate Blanchett, Liam Neeson, Lily Tomlin, Betty White, Fankie Jonas and Noah Cyrys?

Matt Herold said...

My initial reaction when I saw your list was horror but I think it was mainly because I saw a Jonas and a Cyrus.

But upon further reflection, it's actually a pretty good cast. It's not hard to tell who'll play who. Plus, according to Ponyo's IMDB page, they cast Cloris Leachman as well. She was easily the best part of the Bob Saget Roast and I'm looking forward to some good chemistry between her and White and Tomlin.