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September 21, 2014

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European Networks Pull 'Simpsons' Nuclear Jokes in Response to Japanese Crisis

by Jean Bentley, posted Mar 28th 2011 11:15AM
The SimpsonsIn normal times, Homer's hilariously inept antics at the Springfield nuclear plant are just another slightly off-color storyline on 'The Simpsons.' But in light of the current nuclear crisis in Japan, the jokes may not seem as funny, and several countries overseas are pulling episodes that make light of nuclear meltdowns.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, networks in Germany, Austria and Switzerland are screening episodes of the series and either pulling them altogether or replacing jokes that are "unsuitable" to air considering the situation in Japan.

'Simpsons' creator Al Jean told Entertainment Weekly that he understands if certain episodes are pulled. "We have 480 episodes, and if there are a few that they don't want to air for a while in light of the terrible thing going on, I completely understand that," he said. "We would never make light of what's happening in Japan."

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Rudy Giuliani: Japanese People's Response to Disaster 'Really Remarkable' (VIDEO)

by Jeremy Taylor, posted Mar 17th 2011 4:30AM
Rudy Giuliani was on 'Piers Morgan Tonight' (weekdays, 9PM ET on CNN), where he discussed the ongoing disaster in Japan.

Giuliani told Morgan that he goes to Japan on business quite frequently, so he wasn't surprised by how "enormously disciplined" the Japanese people have been in the wake of the earthquake, the tsunami and now the nuclear crisis. But the former New York city mayor is still impressed.

"If God forbid this had to happen anywhere, this is a country that can handle it," Giuliani said of Japan. "They're getting pushed to the point of ... it's really remarkable that they are able to handle it as well as they do. When you see the long lines of people lining up for water. No riots, no disturbances, no looting in any of these cities. Boy, you got a heck of a population in Japan."

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2004 Tsunami Survivor Petra Nemcova Recalls the 'Unconditional Love' Displayed During The Disaster (VIDEO)

by Jeremy Taylor, posted Mar 16th 2011 6:50AM
Petra Nemcova on 'Piers Morgan Tonight'Model and upcoming 'Dancing With the Stars' contestant Petra Nemcova was seriously injured during the 2004 Tsunami in Thailand, a disaster in which her fiancé was killed.

Nemcova is still haunted by what happened seven years ago. But, as she told 'Piers Morgan Tonight' (Weeknights, 9PM ET on CNN), she was also able to take from the tragedy some positive observations about the goodness of human beings -- which she believes will apply to the the unfolding tragedy in Japan.

"One thing that I've seen, personally, amongst a disaster is there was so much unconditional love around people being ready to sacrifice their own lives for others, for strangers, and the whole world coming together and giving so much love," she told Morgan. "That's something amazing and very positive."

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Yoko Ono: Japan Will Recover in a 'Big, Big Beautiful' Way (VIDEO)

by Jeremy Taylor, posted Mar 15th 2011 3:45AM
Yoko Ono was on 'Piers Morgan Tonight' (weekdays, 9PM ET on CNN), where she discussed the on-going tragedy in her native country of Japan. Ono was obviously shaken up by the loss of life and damage created by the earthquake and tsunami. But thinking back to how Japan recovered from the devastation of World War II -- which Ono lived through -- made the 78-year-old optimistic about Japan's future.

"It's very similar, and we did recover in an incredible way," Ono said of the aftermath of the war. "And I'm sure that we will too this time. I think it's a kind of challenge -- it's a very big challenge, nobody wants this kind of big challenge. Well, with a big challenge, I'm sure that some big, big beautiful results will happen."

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'The Pacific' - 'Melbourne' Recap

by Jason Hughes, posted Mar 29th 2010 2:31PM
Jon Seda, 'The Pacific' - 'Melbourne'(S03) Wasn't that a stark contrast from the first two episodes. As viewers, we were just as out of sorts watching that arrival in Melbourne, Australia as the marines themselves were. After two weeks of near non-stop warfare and bloodshed, the marines got a chance to get some much needed R & R, as well as the attention of some very appreciative Aussie young women.

The more relaxed pace of the episode allowed us to get to know some of our principal cast members more intimately. Particularly Robert Leckie and John Basilone, who had very different experiences in Melbourne. Basilone was the decorated war hero, given the highest honor he could possibly achieve, while Leckie found something even sweeter: a woman.

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Japan Still Has The Craziest Game Shows

by Bob Sassone, posted Mar 25th 2010 2:00PM
I think we can all agree that Japan still controls the market in WTF game shows. Sure, we can laugh about how "crazy" 'Wipeout' is, but Japanese game shows make that show and 'Minute To Win It' seem like 'Jeopardy.'

PopCrunch has the ten most insane moments from Japanese TV, and most of them are from game shows. Here are two of my favorite choices (probably NSFW).

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HBO Offering 'The Pacific' Premiere for Free Online Streaming

by Jason Hughes, posted Mar 16th 2010 5:00PM
'The Pacific'
Reviews of the first installment of HBO's ten-part mini-series 'The Pacific' have been mixed -- I liked it, though -- and ratings figures aren't in yet. Nevertheless, the network has taken the bold step of putting that entire episode online for free viewing; you can catch it here. Is it a response to poor ratings -- even though we don't know those figures yet, the network likely does -- or just an attempt to lure people in who don't already have HBO?

The premiere was more style over substance, which is one of the major problems critics had with it, but it did offer some stunning visuals and established an atmosphere very different than 'Band of Brothers.' As a companion piece of sorts to the modern classic 'Brothers,' brought to us by the same production team including Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg, expectations were pretty high for 'The Pacific' coming out of the gate.

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There really is a Dollhouse in Japan

by Brad Trechak, posted Sep 23rd 2009 1:01PM
DollhouseYou can chalk this one up under the "stranger than fiction" category, but if/when the series Dollhouse is shown in Japan, they can use the subtitle "based on a true story". It seems that a similar organization exists there in which people hire other people to pose as spouses, partners, etc. to avoid certain social embarrassments. Granted, the whole "memory implant" plot device isn't actually used, but at least they're halfway there.

The organization is called Hagemashi Tai (translated to "I want to cheer you up"). I cannot help but wonder if Joss read an article somewhere about this phenomenon and loosely based his show on it.

On the other hand, isn't this a standard episode plot of every sitcom ever made, in which a character has to pretend to be another character? In America, I'm aware that you can hire actors as characters for parties but not to this level of organization. Truth truly is stranger than fiction.

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Japanese children's TV is very different from ours

by Brad Trechak, posted Sep 5th 2009 2:04PM
The Ancient Dogoo GirlGranted, I laughed when I saw this, but I can imagine that some would be appalled. If this ever appeared on American television, it would be pulled in about three seconds. Basically, it's a children's show (geared for boys ages 6 to 11) called The Ancient Dogoo Girl, and it's about a teen girl (who hopefully is played by someone older) with some sort of ancient magic bra that shoots energy weapons or spikes or magic beams or some such equivalent. No, I am not kidding about this.

I see some Japanimation influence on the show (they have a cute sidekick robot of some sort), and quite possibly some hentai influence, as well. What does it say about a culture when even its children's television is degrading to women?

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G4 is taking us to Mount Midoriyama for American Ninja Warrior

by Jason Hughes, posted Jul 30th 2009 9:02AM
Ninja WarriorG4 has been bringing Japan's Ninja Warrior to the states for a few years now. And for those of you who haven't seen it, it's one of the most addictive and difficult challenges in the world. The past several runs, they've even worked to send a group of Americans over to Japan to compete in the competition alongside a whole bevy of Japanese personalities and athletes.

Now they're taking it a step further, creating an all American Ninja Warrior. Unfortunately, the plan is to send ten American competitors over there to compete on Sasuke, the official Ninja Warrior obstacle course. I'd have much rather them build an American version of the course here. That way, like in the Japanese version, they can have 100 competitors from all walks of American life.

Just imagine. We'd have actors plugging crap giving it a try, and reality show contestants trying to extend their fifteen minutes. And most of them will fail and land in the water. The fear I have is that if we only have ten contestants in Sasuke, what happens if they all blow the first of four stages? Show's over?

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Marvel streaming bizarre 1970s Japanese Spider-Man

by John Scott Lewinski, posted Jun 12th 2009 10:00AM
Peter Parker heads to the Far East in the Japanese Spider-Man.Marvel Comic's website is now offering a look at Spider-Man not seen by many on this side of the Pacific, with a Japanese television show from the 1970s.

Taking an American superhero and blending him with the traditional motifs of Japanese children's TV produces a bizarre mix -- like tossing a hot dog and sushi in a blender set to frappe.

Rather than take on the Green Goblin or Electro, The Land of the Rising Sun's version of Peter Parker defends precocious Japanese kids from guys in rubber suits, ala Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.

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Human Tetris coming to Fox - VIDEOS

by Anna Johns, posted May 20th 2008 1:44PM
human tetris; hole in the wallHuman Tetris: It's the stupidest, simplest idea ever for a game show... which makes it frickin' brilliant! (Although, my co-worker, Joel, does not agree) Audiences in Japan and Denmark are nuts for it. That was enough for Fox to go from ordering one pilot to grabbing up an entire season, based on the popularity of the shows overseas and on the internet.

The version coming to American television next season is called Hole in the Wall. This game show is about people contorting their bodies to fit through an odd-shaped hole in a wall. The wall comes flying at them and they have to fit through the hole or be pushed into a pool of water. Simple, right? And it's going to be addictive as hell.

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Oui, Wii! Iron Chef: America becomes a video game

by Allison Waldman, posted Mar 10th 2008 4:22PM
Iron Chef logoHere's a video game that promises to slice up the competition. A cut above. It will serve up a dish full of fun for gamers everywhere. It'll be... All right, you get it. Food cliches. Chop-chop. But, seriously, in a marriage between the Food Network and United Media, Iron Chef: America is coming to the home market. Destineer today announced plans to publish the video game Iron Chef America: Supreme Cuisine exclusively for the Wii system and Nintendo DS. It's based on the popular food network competition show, which in turn is based on the original Iron Chef in Japan, produced by Fuji Television.

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World's most insane game shows feature nudists, car theft and nipple clamps

by Richard Keller, posted Jan 26th 2008 9:00AM

Jump on a sqare and get your toes licked by a goat.For the most part American game shows are pretty tame. Oh sure, we eat a live slug once in awhile, and we take a dip into a pool of rattlesnakes on occasion; however, overall, the craziest thing we do is have our halter tops fall off while running down the stage. And, that's by accident.

The rest of the world, on the other hand...well, they've pretty much thrown off the Puritan shackles that we still bear and, for lack of a better phrase, let it all hang out when it comes to their game shows. Sometimes literally. Some examples of this can be found at Cracked.com, which lists 6 examples of the most insane game shows in the world.

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The amazing live Olympic highlight reel - VIDEO

by Bob Sassone, posted Jan 19th 2008 12:38PM

Olympic ringsOver in Japan, they have some wild game/reality shows. Some of them are just outrageously crazy (really, how many times can we see Japanese guys whacked in the groin or weird food being eaten?), but sometimes you see something so cool, so clever, that it just makes you shake your head.

This is such a video. It's from the show Kinchan and Katori Shingo's All Japan Costume Grand Prix (yes, that's the real title - take that Jerry Seinfeld's Super Colossal Happy Hour!), and it shows a group of people who put on a live Olympic highlight reel. I really can't describe it better than that, but trust me, it's quite amazing. This is the type of show we should import. Video after the jump!

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