14 May 2005


I have gotten addicted to this silly, stupid but HILARIOUS SHOW called MXC. Maybe you'd heard of it?

It's based on a Japanese show called "Takashi's Castle", but which has been, er, anglocized (read: Americanized) and is pasted on the TV screen as MXC: Most Extreme Elimination Challenge. It's as close to Monty Python as the USA has gotten, if you ask me.

If you haven't seen this show, Takashi's Castle was one of those 1980's Japanese game shows where the contestants have to dress in ridiculous costumes and go through even sillier obstacle courses, humiliating them all the while. But they're all having a great time! The show is hosted by two Japapese men wearing exagerated, almost comical traditional Japanese/samurai outfits. That's where the Japanese ends and the Americanization begins, however-- their names are Vic Romano and Kenny Blankenship, and these guys have instead substituted their own comedy voiceovers onto it. The result is sort of MST3K meets Running Man (Japanese style), crossed with Animal House. All on amphetamines or something.

Word on the street this is by the same guys that brought us MTV Deathmatch, which I hated. Sure, it's on SpikeTV-- hence the Animal House reference-- but beneath the utter senselessness of the entire thing lies some pretty sharp, smart humour.

Every night, two "fictional" teams play against each other. The other night it was the fast food industry vs. aerospace workers. The fast food industry won.

If you like Python, or Mystery Science Theater 3000, I can't imagine you wouldn't be very amused by this show.

On 'net sites I've looked up about this, there are drinking games where you have to have a shot every time Kenny says something absolutely stupid and Vic responds with a dead serious sports play-by-play voice, "Right you are, Ken." And, in every episode, there's a contestant named "[something] Babaganoush." Drink! Another shot, please.

Ken: "Here's little Susie Smith. She's a pharmaceuticals major at Altered States University."

The events, by the way, are utterly ridiculous. The other day they had one event where they ask trivia questions-- all changed into ridiculous new ones-- and the contestants, who are wearing HAND-shaped costumes, have to run and dive onto the best answer. The other events, "Sinkers and Floaters" and "Log Roll" can yield some pretty "ouch!" inspiring prat-falls. The Log Roll, for instance, is basically where the contestants have to jump across these huge logs on rollers. If they don't do it right... splat! This is where the play-by-play commentary really shines. "He's down in the submissive choirboy stance. Now he's doing the double-knee knob gobbler."

At the end of the show, they show the best "painful eliminations of the day", and add some funny lines to each, like, "that's the sound of his spleen collapsing!!"

Check it out and you'll see what I mean!


Blogger Lee H. said...

What are we missing here.. hmmm... oh yeah! A link!

This sounds like a parody of "American Gladiator," a show I'd have thought it was impossible to parody.

10:38 PM, May 14, 2005  
Blogger Rev. Syung Myung Me said...

It's an odd little show. I can't watch it too often, just because it's basically the same joke every episode, but once in a while, it's pretty awesome. Sometimes the jokes are lame, but it's still pretty amusing. (And, yeah, if that's true, a far sight better than _Celebrity Deathmatch_, which was excruciating.)

Funny thing, IIRC, that show was actually hosted by actor/director Beat Takeshi. So, that makes it just a little bit more surreal, I suppose.

11:16 PM, May 14, 2005  
Blogger Lee H. said...

Who's Beat Takeshi?

11:42 PM, May 14, 2005  
Blogger Rev. Syung Myung Me said...

Here's his IMDB page. (He's also known by his real name, Takeshi Kitano. I think he might be known more by that in the US? Or maybe interchangably? I don't know -- tell you the truth, I'm not really a fan, but more out of only Knowing Of Him than knowing his stuff, not out of, say, disliking his stuff.)

Anyway, he started out as a pretty well-known japanese actor -- IIRC, he was mainly known for goofy comedy stuff (thus, Takeshi's Castle wasn't so weird in the context of that stuff), but lately, he's been writing and directing Artier, More Serious Drama Type Stuff. (He's still acting, too, though it seems to be much less and mostly in his own stuff, it seems, anyway.)

He was also the teacher in Battle Royale, if you've seen that. (If you haven't, don't really bother; it's one of the most overrated films of all time.)

12:34 AM, May 15, 2005  
Blogger CatsFive said...

I agree. The show does get repetitive and the jokes get recycled quite a bit. I honestly think that my TiVO's ability to FF>> gives me a bit of an edge in appreciating crap-- and I do mean delicious crap-- like this. I tire of things easily, but I find that with MXC, my appetite for this guilty pleasure regenerates quickly. I still enjoy it.

1:09 AM, May 15, 2005  

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