THE BEST Japan

Japan World Cup

Japan World Cup

(NSFW: Language) Riichiro Mashima revitalized horse racing arcade games in Japan with Japan World Cup, a nonsensical horse racing betting game that combines CG animation with bizarre comedy. More here and here.

Matryomin Beethoven Boogie

Matryomin Beethoven Boogie

A Japanese matryomin ensemble plays a boogie rendition of Beethoven’s Symphony no. 9. Who the what now? A matryomin is a theremin inside a matryoshka doll, aka a Russian nesting doll. Here’s a solo matryomin performance.

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Powered Jacket MK 3 Exoskeleton

Powered Jacket MK 3 Exoskeleton

A Japanese company called Sagawa Electronics claims that it has developed a powered exoskeleton for teenagers. It has lots of recreational potential, but it’s probably not an actual product. Why? Just watch the video.

Manga Plates

Manga Plates

Add a dash of life and humor to your meals with Manga Plates. Made by Comicalu, the plates look like frames from a Japanese comic book, complete with sketches that accentuate food. More on Comicalu’s online shop.

Cooking with Dog

Cooking with Dog

A popular Japanese cooking show on YouTube, Cooking with Dog stars an anonymous chef and a dog named Francis. Each episode Francis sits beside the chef and narrates in English. Naturally. It’s confusing and educational.

Slow-Mo Baseball Simulation

Slow-Mo Baseball Simulation

The Japanese TV show Masquerade challenges contestants to recreate real-world scenarios using dance, acrobatics and inexpensive props. Here, one team simulates baseball player Ichiro Suzuki swinging at a ball. More examples here.

Japan, WTF?

Japan, WTF?

(NSFW) A sampling of the Land of the Rising Sun’s punishing brand of slapstick and twisted take on Western culture. And also indescribable imagery like this human poodle. Oh Japan, you make us nervously happy.

That Was Just a C!?

That Was Just a C!?

YouTuber Takaske “dances” to Paranoia Revolution in DanceDanceRevolution X3 on the highest difficulty level and the mode that uses both dance pads. Somehow his lightning-fast feet were still no match for the game.

Snow Monkeys @ Hot Spring

Snow Monkeys @ Hot Spring

Art Gimbel shot this video of wild Japanese macaques bathing at the Jigokudani Monkey Park in Japan. Also known as snow monkeys, the primates are used to the presence of humans. View live images of the park here.

Gonzo the Tambourine Man

Gonzo the Tambourine Man

Don’t bother wearing underwear ladies and gentlemen, because Gonzo is about to melt them right off. This man’s insane tambourine skills are matched only by his sense of fashion. Keep rocking man.

Otaku Spaces

Otaku Spaces

Patrick W. Galbraith’s fascinating look inside Otaku culture, which is best described as a combination of avid collecting, hoarding, and some sort of an OCD. Features interviews with 15 of these über-fans.

Binocular Soccer

Binocular Soccer

This Japanese skit turned the beautiful game into a slapstick sport, with players wearing binoculars that made things look closer than they really were. Seeing guys kick nothing but air never gets old.

Cathy’s House

Cathy’s House

A bizarre recurring sketch from the short-lived Japanese late night comedy show Vermilion Pleasure Night, featuring actresses acting like dolls in stories as random as the ones kids make up.

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Automated Bicycle Parking

Automated Bicycle Parking

This excerpt from an episode of Culture Japan shows the Eco Cycle underground bicycle parking lot. Customers get cards that are used to identify their bike, which machines can retrieve in seconds.

Winter Illuminations

Winter Illuminations

An annual lightshow called Winter Illuminations at Japan’s Nabana no Sato covers the grounds and gardens of the park with millions of LEDs. The walk-through light tunnels are truly extraordinary.

Jidaigeki X-Men

Jidaigeki X-Men

Alex Mitchell follows up his Sengoku Avengers by transforming Prof. X, his students and his enemies into Edo Period characters. Hint: the character roster is based on the 90’s X-Men cartoon.

Kuratas Robot Configurator

Kuratas Robot Configurator

Suidobashi Heavy Industry has launched a site where you can customize the $2M Kuratas mech and then place an order. Who cares if it’s a hoax? We just built a robot. Your argument is invalid.

Incredible Can Art

Incredible Can Art

Japanese artist Makoan creates intricate sculptures of pop culture icons and other objects by recycling beer and soda cans. He even color-matches his subjects by using a variety of drink brands.

FPA Commentary

FPA Commentary

‘Moving picture archivers’ Puppet Shed introduce us to the majesty of Fruity Posing Archery. Stick around for the ending and take in some Jiskefet if you feel like expanding your sports palate further.

Bird-Apartment

Bird-Apartment

Designed by Nendo for the Momofuku Ando Center in Nagano, it has 78 birdhouses on one side and a tree house on the other. People can look at the birds in the nests from inside the tree house.

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Sengoku Avengers

Sengoku Avengers

Artist Alex Mitchell re-imagined the Avengers movie characters as Japanese warriors, gods and demons from the Sengoku Period. He even came up with brief back stories for each of them.

Japanese Prank Compilation

Japanese Prank Compilation

DaRkHaVoC1 compiled some of the funniest pranks from Japanese shows. We’ve already shared the first one, but the rest are hilarious as well. The second massage chair prank is a blast.

Kuratas

Kuratas

Japanese engineers have unveiled Kuratas, a 13-foot-tall, wheeled mech which actually can drive up to 10km/h, heads-up video display, and can be operated remotely by an smartphone.

Thumbtack Russian Roulette

Thumbtack Russian Roulette

The boys of Japanese Jackass show Megwin TV uses a modified Nerf gun to play thumbtack Russian roulette. It’s not as dangerous as the real version, but the tension is still there.

8 Minutes in Japan

8 Minutes in Japan

Japan often finds itself the hilarious or perplexing focus of a “Meanwhile in ___” moment, but this video from hiokinskywalker reminds us that the land of the rising sun is pretty damn serene too.

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