This is my Part Four Blog of the USA vs The World - ANW 6 Special that aired on Monday, September 15, 2014. For those who are confused when this happened.. it was the Final day (Sunday) of the Las Vegas taping of American Ninja Warrior 6 back in June 15, 2014.
For those who were curious of the orientation of the team positions don't go by this photo! Notice where Team Japan is in this photo on the right.. and notice that Kanno is waiting to go in Stage ONE on the left! LOL
Quick reminder of where we are, since there is no visible scoreboard at the event.. nor timer.. nor audible buzzers.. ehem.. (NBC learned from past years this could be used against them so they are no longer visible). Two heats are completed. We should be at 6/6/3 at this point with 1 heat left with 3 points on the line. However we are at 9/6/0. As far as NBC is concerned, the only way there will be a Final Stage is if USA wins. Points anywhere else and Europe Wins (either by a Landslide of 12 points or by 3 points if Japan took it). Either way, THIS is what was at stake at this point. The Final Stage, a stage that the USA hasn't seen on American soil in 6 years of ANW competition. That.. is important to etch into your mind right now.. especially with the REAL bulls**t about to happen.
Ryo Matachi (Cliffer #2) 又地諒
For those unfamiliar with history, this event is taking place right AFTER Sasuke 30 (that was taped in May, 2014 and ANW was June, 2014) so he's currently the 2-time Finalist after reaching the Final for the 2nd time just a month before this event. To say he's a 3rd Stage specialist.. is the understatement of the century.
Fluff piece.. apparently they couldn't do an interview with him or something. LOL This was from last year (taped in June, 2013 but aired in January, 2014). Last year he won the 3rd stage heat and beat Brian Arnold "narrowly". This is fresh in his mind.
And the first of his 2 finals. This is at least the footage that Comcast/NBC owns. Sasuke 27. Ryo made it to the final in Sasuke 30.
Not taking any chances since NBC keeps harping on the Japanese that you can't skip balls or grab chains (even AFTER their protest once they saw people skipping balls and grabbing chains...) so he'll be damned if he goes out on a technicality.
if you're sure!
Btw I'm laughing at the little ticks here and there they are adding to his time as he runs on the virtual timer on television.. 35 seconds between UCH and Jumping on this.. right.. I have a bridge I'd like to sell you.
and voila.. another 43 seconds added.. seriously.. 43 seconds.. you have to be SHITTING me that he was just lollygagging for 43 seconds on that bar. Seriously.. stop what you are doing. Put a timer on and WAIT 43 seconds.. no way in hell he was up there for that long before attempting the obstacle. 10 seconds sure. 20 seconds.. pushing it but sure. 43??? HELL NO. And if you think this time isn't important.. just wait for Brian's run.
Pipe Slider technique™. Frankly I'm amazed it works on this. I think those who train like crazy for it (like Morimoto and Ryo) could get away with this technique. Anyone else who casually uses it will fall immediately on the first jump.
Seriously.. he should be disqualified right here. NO SKIPPING. If they can't apply it to everyone they shouldn't apply it at all. They do that in Sasuke. You DQ they STOP you where you are. Period. No favoritism and they don't care if you are a Star.
So he continues and unlike Stefano who ended up balking and going through all 3.. Sean is above the rules and is allowed to continue even if he totally skipped.
LOL Look at Asa's WTF face watching Sean skip that first obstacle. They all look tentative. Even Vadym "wtf am I doing here" Kuvakin has a wtf face. Don't worry.. Rules don't apply to him so no need to worry about disqualification folks.
Stock footage on Ryo (more on that later) since apparently NBC is incapable of showing Japan actually cheer for anyone. God forbid they actually be good sportsman right? Btw I was asked recently if NBC uses stock footage for crowd shows and reaction shots. I thought it was obvious but apparently people are confused. YES they do it for "dramatic purposes" so yes choosing to paint one side worse than the other is intentional. Hell.. they do it for the Olympics.. you think they'd change for this? LOL
Taking time for the crowd (I'm told he grandstanded here. LOL He was pretty cocky. Hell on the preview for the 3rd stage he called it how Ssssuuuuuper easy this stage was).
canad.. Europe eliminated from contention in this heat. They are still ahead. So USA can tie Europe with a win or Japan can get the 3 points and eliminate the USA.
inner-tube in the water and float around. Giggles.
This year, cocky as hell and after that infamous hand hover incident.. (he wanted to control what order he ran in the 2nd so he purposely held his hand over the buzzer for almost 20 seconds running down the timer). To say it caused a stir is putting it mildly.
It was all for nothing anyway. He fell on the 2nd stage after losing time getting lost on the Rope Maze then rushing on the Unstable Bridge.
Again.. with the face of Ryo in Isolation. It's clear he's standing in a row and not in their chairs as you see Team Europe jackets just behind Asa (who has fresh tears of disappointment) and flash bulbs from the cameras. This is AFTER it was announced he was denied this heat. So, again, NBC making things look worse than they are for Japan for their benefit. It's important that NBC paints Japan as the villains for this charade to work. Even scarier that people BOUGHT what NBC was selling.
For the record.. it wasn't even close.. at the CLOSEST it was 30 seconds to Ryo.. at the FURTHEST it was 40 seconds to Ryo. Ryo won by a landslide.. so if you want to know wtf these faces are all about.. yeah.. One can argue Morimoto lost.. but Ryo was outright ROBBED.
People complained about not seeing the Final on ANW for 6 straight years.. and so help NBC they were going to do it by any means necessary. This is not a competition folks. It's a reality show. That's the message NBC is trying to say.
So instead of me cheering for Brian because he cleared the 3rd Stage for the first time (even if it wasn't in a row since no competitor was supposed to go more than twice in the event, but still this is still giving him credit for it), I'm too busy seething because NBC altered the results. They didn't rig it (that implies the competitors were accessories to the crime), they altered it after they ran. That's why they hid the timer and creatively edited those shots between to create the illusion of time being faster or slower.
No one heard any klaxons. There were no visible timers. All they did was wait until the crowd died down and over a loudspeaker a disembodied voice would announce the result that such and such won the stage (heat). That's it. So I'm sure this is when the voice of USA/Arnold was heard over the loud speaker. To know you won by a huge margin.. to know you went fast on purpose, especially knowing that your teammate potentially was shafted.. knowing if it was even remotely close you'd lose to NBC politics but worked your ASS off to make sure they didn't fight for that tenth of a second.. to know that your reputation as an athlete is ruined by no fault of your own.. to know that people think you choked.. or you suck.. or you can't do a clutch performance.. to know that it didn't matter. what you did. THIS is what it looks like. This face wasn't because Arnold cleared. Notice that they never showed Japan cheering for all of those who cleared. No. NBC only showed the infuriating disappointment of knowing that this was because NBC was hellbent of showing that Final and move heaven and Earth to make it happen. Even if it meant completely altering history. This is not a sport to NBC. They can care less about fairness and sportsmanship. All backlash be damned they will fabricate drama for the sake of ratings. THIS is why I HATE NBC and AMERICAN Ninja Warrior. That is why I am boycotting them and have been for past 3 years. Ever since NBC took over it's turned into "this". This is why I hesitant to do this blog but did so because Morimoto begged me to do it. For him - even knowing what happened to HIM...
This is why Sasuke's spirit is infinitely superior to the decaying, putrid ideal that NBC calls "entertainment". Nothing is sacred to NBC. Everyone is expendable to them. I personally find the level playing field of sportsmanship to be vastly superior and infinitely more exciting when the human drama is allowed to be displayed unfettered and unaltered. I don't need to be handheld and told who I need to be cheering for. Sasuke gives me the opportunity to cheer for whoever I want, regardless of what country they come from, with the safety of knowing that the results were fair. If I wanted differently I FRICKING WATCH WIPEOUT. I applaud the efforts of the rookies and veterans alike. In Arnold's case he sacrificed his family for the sake of the television show. They worked their asses off to represent themselves and respective countries to the best of their abilities. NBC had to ruin it by shitting all over it.
Next. The Final. I hope you like it because they just railroaded an entire country and their "esteemed guests" for your viewing pleasure. And yes. I already stated my case directly to TBS. I don't want Japan to ever return to ANW. Ever.