3 Perspectives” to enjoy 10/8 King of Conte 10 times more
On October 8, the 15th edition of “King of Conte 2022” (TBS) will finally be broadcast. Last year, the judges were renewed, and KUKI KAIDAN won with the highest score in the history of the competition. This year, as in the previous year, there are five first-time entrants. With all these fresh faces, it will be interesting to see how the battle unfolds.
The 10 finalists were Inu, Kagaya, Cro Cop, Cotton, Best Humans, Nippon no President, Nelsons, Biscuit Brothers, Yadan, and Long Coat Daddy. Each group has a different flavor and specializes in a different style.
First up were the best of the best. They made a splash by becoming the first impromptu unit to make it to the finals. The members are former maestro Yoichi Okano, who was a finalist in the same competition in 2014 and 2015 as a duo, and Yoshizumi, who won “Women’s Comedian No. 1 Contest THE W” in 2020. They are talented performers, and their material is characterized by a unique view of the world and a sense of madness.
To begin with, the maestro specializes in outlandish comedy such as “making an uncle by wrapping a pachinko ball in newspaper,” and Yoshizumi was influenced by this unique world. This is probably the reason why Yoshizumi has many stories with a bad aftertaste. The two showed outstanding chemistry in the semifinals.
Gold Country” and “Blue No. 1” showed great individuality despite losing in the semifinals.
Although they were unfortunately eliminated in the semifinals, there was one group that I personally felt had great potential. These two groups were “Gold Country” and “Blue No. 1.
Gold Country excels in performance and composition. Of the two stories performed in the semifinals, I was particularly impressed by a skit about two core fans who came to buy anime T-shirts.
I will not go into details because it may be put on the award show in the future, but the way the two actors presented their movements in the elevator and on the stairs was excellent. In particular, the scene at the beginning in which they get into the elevator of the building with their backs to the audience, and the scene at the end in which they face the audience and take the elevator to the apartment building. This is a technique to create a mysterious atmosphere by first showing the backs of the performers and finally showing their expressions and T-shirts, leading to a sense of urgency.
I was impressed by how well this was done in a very short scene. It was like a scene from a movie, but it was also very funny. Personally, I thought they were the top duo in terms of freshness of direction.
The other duo, Blue No. 1, showed a new side of themselves. It was a pity that I could only see one of their performances, but their comedy about a job-hunting student who tries to recover from his own failure at a TV station interview was excellent.
Whereas I had previously had a strong image of the boorish Norihiro Uemura leading the material, this contraption revolved around Sou Kariya. I may have been watching their material, but the contrast gave me a sense of the trio’s new possibilities.
Three Kansai groups with their own unique worldviews
The three groups from the Kansai region who beat out these Kanto contesters to advance to the finals were. Long Coat Daddy,Nippon no Boss, andBiscuit Brothers are all based in the Kansai region and perform both manzai and comedy. While the Kanto group focused on everyday situation comedy, the Longcoat Daddy won the competition by presenting their own unique worldview.
Long Coat Daddy’ s fourth place finish in the final of last year’s “M-1 Grand Prix” is still fresh in the memory. Their story was a manzai comedy about a man who wants to be a crocodile in his next life but for some reason is reincarnated as a meat udon noodle.
The show had the atmosphere of Kanto comedians such as Ogi Yahagi and POISON GIRL BAND, but the fact that the comedians’ outlandish and easily understandable humor functioned at the points of exchange was a reminder of their Kansai roots. They won the first place in this year’s “All That’s Manzai: Midsummer Golden SP” (MBS). With their momentum building, there is a good chance that they will be at the top of the King of Conte.
In 2020, they will perform a skit about the encounter between a centaur (human upper body and horse lower body) and a minotaur (cow upper body and human lower body), and in 2021, they will perform a skit about an uncle who gives advice to high school ball players at a batting center, but the ball keeps hitting him. In 2021, he made it to the King of Conte finals with a skit about an uncle who gives advice to high school ball players at a batting center and keeps getting hit by a ball.
In each case, the comedian’s strong character, combined with his cute ass, had us laughing before we knew what was happening. This year’s semi-finalists also showed that their personalities were still alive and well. They won the Grand Prize at last year’s NHK New Comedy Awards and the Rookie of the Year Award at this year’s Kamigata Manzai Awards. Like KUKI KAIDAN, will they become King of Contest champion for the third time?
The Biscuit Brothers have also achieved results in a number of award races, winning the “ytv Manzai Newcomer Award” in 2020 and last year’s “NHK Kamigata Manzai Contest,” and making their second appearance in the King of Conte finals after 2019. The duo is characterized
At the 2019 King of Conte, he performed a theatrical technique, but in the semifinals of this year’s competition, he simply brought Harada’s arm strength to the forefront. One could say that this was a kind of forbidden contrivance, but if it explodes, this competition will be theirs.
Expect a fierce battle between Kansai vs.
Excluding Jarjaru, who was already active in Tokyo, the last Kansai group to win the King of Conte was Kamaitachi in 2017 (who entered Tokyo in 2018).
Prior to that, there were only a few: Korokoro Chiki Chiki Peppers in 2015 (entered Tokyo in 2016) and Buffalo Goro in 2008 (entered Tokyo in 2009). Although this is only a summary of activity bases, it is clear that the mainstream of King of Conte and Contest has been in Tokyo.
However, this does not mean that this situation will continue in the future. In recent years, an increasing number of Kansai-based comedians have been actively inviting Kanto-based comedians to perform as guests at their live shows, and it is not unusual to see Kansai-based comedians influenced by Kanto-based comedians. I have the strong impression that the East and the West are improving in an open environment while retaining their own unique characteristics.
I was impressed by the words of Sho Kaga of Kaga-ya, whom I interviewed directly this year on this subject.
Of course, there is the strength of his character, but I have seen Robert-san being popular to death in Osaka,” he said. On the other hand, Longcoat Daddy in the Kansai region does very atmospheric material. I trust Longcoat Daddy’s customers, and I don’t think we won’t be popular in that kind of Osaka soil.
Longcoat Daddy and Nippon’s president, together with Cellulite Spa, formed the contraption unit “Kansai Contra Security Association. A special program of the same name was also broadcast on ABC TV last July 2021. They are seriously trying to root conte in the soil of Kansai, where manzai is favored.
Will the energized Kansai contenders win the King of Conte this year, or will the Kanto contenders continue to dominate? Or will the Kanto region continue to be the champion? Either way, there is no doubt that this year’s contest will be just as exciting as the last one.
Text： Asahi Suzuki
Freelance editor/writer. Former band member, former broadcaster. Loves all kinds of entertainment. Published "Shimura Ken Theory" (Asahi Shinbun Publishing) in April 2021. Currently updating his personal website "Immortal Writing Blues. http://s-akira.jp/