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Bizarre Japanese Game Shows

Japan is known for having things which the rest of the world does not really put emphasis on. Their culture is wildly different and they put emphasis on things which are strange at best, to the rest of the world. When their popular culture meets traditional culture, meets capitalism, you get something that looks like Japanese game shows. Game shows tend to be over exaggerated and in Japan, that is often just the start. Here are some of the most bizarre Japanese game shows.

Slippery Stairs

Slippery Stairs is not actually a game show but only a part of a biannual show that is called Nuru Nuru Treasure Hunter.

The show’s part which contains the slippery stairs was actually just a part, a clip which was uploaded to the internet and which became popular in the West. It blew up, actually, to the point where everyone started calling the show slippery stairs. 

During that part of the show, the contestants had to climb a staircase, but to their dismay, the stairs were unclimbable. They were coated with propylene glycol, which makes them extremely slippery. The entirety of the show is called All star thanksgiving.

Bokkusu no kabe

This show is called Bokkusu no kabe and it roughly translates to Wall of Boxes. In this game, the competitors have to choose a wall of boxes and climb up to the top of the boxes and sit there. They are tied using climbing harnesses and have helmets. Other competitors have to find creative ways to knock down the boxes. The show lasted from 1991 until 1997 and during that time, the Wall of Boxes was one of the most entertaining parts of the show. From tanks to battering rams, there were some very creative way of knocking down boxes.


Nokabe or human tetris, is a very fun show that puts people in the position to become human tetris. The actual goal of the game is to make a body shape that matches the cutout in the styrofoam. The styrofoam approaches the team and if they do not manage to let it pass over them without stopping, they get dropped into water. Some would call it a type of yoga where the consequences are a quick bath. 

Candy or Not Candy

This was part of an annual show called the Tokio Vs Arashi Ultraman Dash.

This part of the show is pretty simple. Contestants would have to guess which of the objects are edible and which are non edible. Then, they would be given the objects, or rather, they would have to take a bite out of them, to confirm or be surprised when they find out that they had been handed a shoe, or something even worse. This is one of the less vibrant Japanese shows, but still one that can take a bite out of you.

Takeshi’s Castle

Obstacle courses are very hard for regular people, particularly when they are made to test everything and to make the people suffer. From 86, up to 140 contestants can enter Takeshi’s Castle, where they would have to pass a grueling obstacle course. If anybody manages to pass the obstacle course, they would have to fight general Takeshi and his troops, which used to be done with water pistols and in mini cars, against a timer and other people, of course. It is a hard show that seems unbeatable.

Japan has awesome and bizarre game shows, and these are but some of them.