Going to the “M-1” Final Again! Nishikigoi talk about their dream stage at age 50! | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Going to the “M-1” Final Again! Nishikigoi talk about their dream stage at age 50!

The veteran duo that drew attention as the "oldest finalists" last year will once again challenge for the top spot in the "M-1" competition!

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The two members of “Nishikigoi” talk about their enthusiasm. Masaki Hasegawa is on the left, and Takashi Watanabe is on the right, the comedian. Both are veterans with over 20 years of performing experience.

Last year, the comedy duo “Nishikigoi” romped in the final of “M-1” as the oldest finalists. They made it to the semifinals again this year with the physical gags of Masaki Hasegawa (50) and the sharp comedy of Takashi Watanabe (43).

On TV and radio, Hasegawa has repeatedly expressed his true feelings, saying, “Not winning was the most frustrating event in my life,” and Watanabe has also said, “M-1 is my dream. This will be the third consecutive year that the two are going to the semifinals, and they told us about their current feelings.

Hasegawa: “We were frankly relieved when we were selected to advance to the semifinals.

Watanabe: “I was relieved. Watanabe: “I was relieved, but now that I’m here, I want to win.

Hasegawa: “This year, I was trying to enjoy myself from the first game to the quarterfinals, so I was only a little nervous. We made it to the finals last year, so I guess we could think that the number of people who know us has increased even a little. It’s more like what we usually do at the theater.”

Watanabe: “Really? I thought I wouldn’t get nervous at first, but I didn’t change at all. I was nervous from the first game to the quarterfinals. I’m sure I’ll be nervous in the semifinals too.

Hasegawa will enter the age of 50 this year. Watanabe is also approaching his mid-forties. Both of them are said to have certain concerns about M-1. They are worried about the burden on their bodies as they take on the challenge with all their wounds.

Hasegawa: “In November, I injured my back during a story on stage. I often run around the stage, and at 50 years old, the strain on my back is ridiculous (laughs). (laughs) My manager introduced me to a physical therapist, and I went to the clinic this morning, and I’m feeling much better.

Watanabe: “Sitting in the middle, moving around, all our stuff puts a lot of strain on the lower back.

Hasegawa: “When I went to the chiropractor, he said, ‘Please tell us the cause of your pain so that we can help you. I told him honestly, “I was about to be attacked by a gnu and I ducked to avoid it, and that’s when I hurt it.

Watanabe: “Why are you explaining the story as it is (laughs)?

Hasegawa: “In addition to that, I have eight missing teeth, so my tongue is not very smooth. There’s a gag where I shout “Raisin bread”, but one time I thought it wasn’t popular, and they didn’t understand what I was saying.

Watanabe: “Even I, who was closest to him, misheard it as ‘chanpon men’. Watanabe: “Even I, who was closest to him, misheard ‘chanponmen’. I’ll manage it by parroting back Masaki’s jokes. I learned this from last year’s final.”

Hasegawa: “On the other hand, Takashi, is there anything you can do?

Watanabe: “I can’t lift my left shoulder anymore. Watanabe: “I can’t lift my left shoulder anymore, I guess it’s my forty shoulders. I’m glad it’s not my right shoulder that I’m making fun of.

Hasegawa: “It’s scary when you can’t lift your arm during a story.

Watanabe: “In that case, I’ll ask Masaki to squat down a little bit and change my style of tapping to a side-throw style.

Hasegawa: “From now on, you have to stretch properly before you go on stage.

Watanabe: “Preparatory exercises before the stage. I don’t think people like that should be doing manzai (laughs).

Although the semi-finals are just a few days away, he was all smiles during the interview.

This year, he has been in the spotlight for various TV programs, mainly for his stories. In addition, their first autobiography book will be released in November, and they are riding high right now. Hasegawa has graduated from his longtime part-time job and is now focusing on comedy. He has also made a big decision for his art.

Hasegawa: “I bought a TV for the first time in my life. And it’s 40 inches. Ever since I started living on my own, I’ve always gotten TVs as gifts. It also comes with a recorder that can automatically record all programs. I’ve always wanted to watch and study the TV shows I’ve appeared in. Also, I thought it would be better to watch other shows as much as possible. The total cost was about 180,000 yen.

Watanabe: “I bought a 30,000 yen mom-chari before this summer. It’s for walking.”

Hasegawa: “Why? (laughs)”

Watanabe: “Also, Masaki-san has gained weight, hasn’t he? Since I’ve been working more, I’ve finally been able to eat well every day.

Hasegawa: “Yes, I gained 10 kilos in a year. I gained 10 kilos in a year, but because of that, my suit broke down and I had to buy a new one twice this year alone.

Watanabe: “You were really skinny before that because you couldn’t eat.

Hasegawa: “I weighed over 80 kg for the first time in my life. Hasegawa: “My weight exceeded 80 kilograms for the first time in my life. I’m getting older, but I’m in the best condition in terms of eating and living.

Finally, I asked him again about his enthusiasm for “M-1.

Hasegawa: “I’ve been saying this since I made it to the quarterfinals of M-1 for the first time in 2015, but I still want to win. Especially last year, I came in fourth in the final. I feel that the championship is now within reach, and I want to go for it.

Watanabe: “Last year, I witnessed the victory of “Magical Lovely” from behind on the same stage, and it was really frustrating. This year, we’re going to win. To do that, I want to fight hard in the semifinals.

The veteran duo will continue their challenge to reach the top of the Shabekuri.

  • Photo Takero Yatsuka

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