Exploring the Resurgence of Joyman and the Enduring Appeal of Yoshio Kojima Among Children in the Reiwa Era | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Exploring the Resurgence of Joyman and the Enduring Appeal of Yoshio Kojima Among Children in the Reiwa Era

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At the keirin event, Joyman’s Takagi (left) and Kazushi Iketani (43) appeared. Their sales, which secured a considerable lead in second place, remain strong this year as well. Their monthly income has exceeded that of their initial breakthrough.

Joyman is experiencing a resurgence, appearing in commercials for Nisshin York’s “Pilcurl Miracle Care.”

“Last year, Joyman appeared in sales events held at shopping malls and elsewhere a total of 112 times, ranking first among all Yoshimoto Kogyo-affiliated comedians by a wide margin. They are supported for their reasonable fees considering their level of fame and for rarely refusing gigs.

Yoshimoto divides comedians into those managed by exclusive managers and those under ‘PC management’ without specific managers, and Joyman falls into the latter category. This flexibility, where any Yoshimoto employee can handle their schedule, has also worked in their favor.” (Scriptwriter)

Yoshio Kojima (43), who became famous with the phrase “Sonna no Kankei ne!” (“That doesn’t matter!”), also attracts a large crowd of children at events he hosts.

“In the early 2000s, with the boom of short skits on shows like ‘Bakusho Red Carpet’ (Fuji TV), comedians with strong characters emerged one after another.

In contrast, in the Reiwa era, the trend is toward prioritizing comedy competitions, with slow-burning routines being predominant. Sales events at places like shopping malls, where various generations gather, are not suitable.

Now that the pandemic is easing and events are resuming, there is a demand for ‘one-hit wonder’ comedians who are widely recognized and have a strong enough character to captivate new audiences.” (Advertising agency representative)

It’s said that one-hit wonder comedians also fit well with the strict compliance standards of the Reiwa era.

“Both Joyman and Kojima, along with many other surviving one-hit wonder comedians, excel at non-offensive humor. They can be enjoyed by children without worry and, with their impactful phrases, are perfect for short-duration commercials where strong appeal is essential.” (Same source)

The scriptwriter mentioned earlier points out a commonality among one-hit wonder comedians who have made a comeback in the Reiwa era: “They are skillfully utilizing new tools such as social media.”

“Joyman’s boke role, Shinya Takagi (43), is adept at handling social media, often searching for posts like ‘Has Joyman disappeared?’ and replying with ‘I’m right here.’ Anyway, Akamura (42), who made a comeback through Britain’s popular talent show ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ and actively uploads videos aimed at overseas audiences on YouTube.”

Nagano (49), famous for the phrase ‘I like Rassen~’, successfully changed his character to a sharp-tongued persona.

“He’s reminiscent of the old Higashiyama (49). This is his true nature. Moreover, as someone who struggled for a long time in the lower ranks, he’s willing to do Rassen-related skits if asked. He’s very versatile.

As evidenced by last year’s ‘M-1 Grand Prix’ winner, ‘Reiwa Romance,’ stating ‘TV is the lowest priority,’ there are fewer young comedians who say ‘I’ll do anything if it gets me on TV!’ In such circumstances, one-hit wonder comedians in their forties who work tirelessly are a welcome presence.” (Production company director)

One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.

From the April 19, 2024 issue of FRIDAY

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