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Thursday, February 18, 2016

USA vs World - NBC ANW7 Special - Part 2

Thanks everyone for being patient!  I've been working hard on a few of projects that I'm planning on unveiling soon™ and I procrastinated in taking time away from that to post this blog!  Without further ado I'm back to blogging about this year's American Ninja Warrior 7 Special - USA vs. World special that aired on Sunday, January 31, 2016 on NBC.  I'm  happy to report that many of the things that made me RAGE in last year's special has actually been addressed! Not all.. but it seems the major issues that TBS officially protested last year were fixed for this year.  A few stupid things remain but I'll point them out as I do the blog.

We are now on the 2nd of 3 heats for the First Stage

Up first in this heat is Tim Champion from England.


Oh yeah.. another fluff piece..

He's a "top" gymnast because in reality.. no one is not "top" anything on ANW lol

And yes it IS an accomplishment to do an iron cross.  Though he has to tuck in his butt a little but that's totally nitpicking.

And we are back!

You know.. I'm really happy NBC hasn't decided to do the evil Japan snapshot like they did the past couple of years.  Seriously.. it's NICE to see them that yes they ACTUALLY watched and cheered people on like normal competitors do.

Transition to the rope

ooooooh lift those legs.. lol

Finally.  Someone who got the Jumping Spider!  Go 6-foot wingspan! (reference to his Fluff piece)

a bit slow through here but he's still the first to even GET through this obstacle today.

First look at the Sonic Curve

At least he doesn't Shingo™ the landing :P

He's really lucky this isn't timed..

Now for the Coin Flip

Seems the trampoline to the first Bar is new and he does it

Getting through the 3 Jumping Bars

But WOW totally misses the transition to the cargo net!

Everytime someone says you can't fail an obstacle like this.. someone has to prove them wrong.

Less crowd reactions this year (and that's a good thing) though they are hilarious when we see them.

You just need one split second of lack of commitment for it to go horribly wrong.  Though I am VERY happy to see the timer clearly visible to everyone including the competitors.

Poor guy is devastated.

Tim Champion - Death by Triple Flying Swing

Going into commercials again though.. stupid things I notice™
WTF is up with that sign? LMFAO

King Kong vs. The Bull are next after the break!

Yay!  They used the joke! LOL LOL He always jokes with his friends that he's just one big Gorilla that eats bananas. 

For those asking, HE is the one that perpetuates the joke.  In fact NBC didn't show all of the antics he did while filming the B-roll for this special.

Hey I like the shots they put for the next guys so Imma going to screencap them!

Giggles.. they didn't get him running on all fours.

Yay a smile!

Btw after like 5 commercial breaks and over half hour.. and we are still at 1 point. Yep.. this is definitely an NBC production..

Sasuke Veteran Kenji Takahashi 高橋賢次
He is the owner of his own delivery company called "KONG EXPRESS".

OMG they didn't call it Mount Midoriyama!  YAY! For those of you at home, the Japanese call the course "The Steel Castle".  Oh and Comcast owns this footage.. it's G4/M9 footage.

This however is not.. this is Sasuke 31's Third Stage. In fact I was in attendance for that.  This is called the Sidewinder R サイドワインダー・R. As for the footage itself, I did ask after I did the podcast and TBS did give them clips of all the Japan competitors from Sasuke 31. First time legit! ♥

Again I'm ignoring the commentary since I was told that's not exactly what was said. Btw Kong repping the ANW shirt he got as a gift from an American competitor (my apologies I forgot which one).

This is also from Sasuke 31.  This is called the Drum Hopper ドラム・ホッパー 

Cool shot of the grizzled veteran (cough.. I'm older than him.. cough..)

Shut up Matt.. this is not his first international competition..

Lining up his jump

On the Propeller....

and wasn't high enough


Too high on the trampoline

And didn't get enough lift.. that said..

The trampoline itself for the Propeller Bar was not the problem but I'll go over that at the end of the event on the overview section.

Kenji Takahashi 高橋賢次 - Death by Propeller Bar

Time for the running of the Bull.

Long Fluff piece

And a condition he has that renders him completely hairless.

Bull is best known for this crazy dismount...

Where instead of using his hands, he dismounted using a backflip during ANW6's Venice Finals

Needless to say everyone lost their marbles.

He made it Stage 3 last night in ANW7's Vegas Finals

He was a college athlete


His turn at the Propeller bar

and spins like crazy but cleared

Silk slider

And another Jumping Spider fail tonight!

Team USA in disbelief

Team Europe is stunned..

Yeah.. that trampoline is placed wrong.. They are jumping just fine.. it's just too high and unless you are absolutely perfect.. you have no hope in saving it.

Nah I disagree with his assessment.. I doubt it would have mattered honestly but still good sportsmanship.

Kevin Bull - Death by Jumping Spider

6 run and no clears

Tim got the furthest of the three so Team Europe gets the point.

So did everyone else!

Up next is a speed competition.

Third heat in the First Stage 
"maybe their top athlete..." Seriously Matt.. you know he's the current champion.

 Grand Champion of Sasuke  Yuusuke Morimoto 森本 裕介

So yeah.. they go to (yet) another fluff piece and Matt says he's "highly regarded among Ninjas around the world".. however.. they do NOTHING to explain WHY he is. They literally stop short in saying he's the current Sasuke champion. 

 Lemme fix that for you - 10-Time Ninja Warrior Veteran (He's been around since ANC1) and Sasuke 27 Veteran

 They only note Morimoto being the first person ever to clear ANW's Third Stage. (No one had done it to that point)

First man to ever clear the Crazy Cliffhanger in competition - Sasuke 29.

And Drew Dreschel ドリュー・ドレッシェル knows a thing or two since he was in attendance for a scene that NBC has.. but didn't use in this special. 

THIS one.. THIS is the footage NBC had but didn't use..

NBC wouldn't be caught dead sharing the spotlight with the reigning Sasuke Champion.  ESPECIALLY after outright robbing them last year of the chance to go up against Teams USA and Europe on that Final.

They'd rather just say that he has great potential for a college kid..  Don't even get me started on what was translated.. it wasn't even close.

Anyway.. back from raging.. Yuusuke sprinting across with his short legs

and just barely gets to the landing platform

See?  Everyone knew he's the Sasuke Champ. LOL In fact everyone called him that on the lot in Vegas.

Propeller Bar

Smooth transition

Silk Slider

And safe on the landing

But not on that one

Hioki upset about that

Yuusuke Morimoto 森本 裕介 - Death by Jumping Spider

He's the 6th person to fail it the exact same way

Just not far enough in the chute

Trying to overcome the trampoline pitch

Okay.. this is a d*ck move by NBC saying that Morimoto can't blame his height for his failure. All you have to do is compare the trampoline from a couple days before and you see the pitch difference so to randomly put this on there after Morimoto failed to justify it is a total d*ck move.

 Completely uncalled for especially since Morimoto didn't blame his height.  There's a reason why they did it ONLY to Morimoto when much taller competitors (including Team USA) ALSO failed the SAME obstacle the SAME way.  This was just trolling on NBC's part and it was glaringly obvious. This made me sick.  Their disdain for Japan is so blatant.  Height shaming was totally unnecessary.

Back to the show with our favorite Dual citizen

He legit lives in England

and apparently got into marathoning

On the Propeller Bar

Reminder of the fact that he's Vegan but NBC isn't promoting that this year apparently.

Silk Slider clear

Waiting in anticipation if he can clear just like Tim did

and he does

Sonic Curve

 Flying through the course

much faster than Tim at this exact point

but missed the wall on his first try

Clear on the 2nd try

Drew up next watching

Coin Flip

Trampoline into the Jumping Bars

no problems

Taking his time to make sure he doesn't Champion it.

caught it with ease

I like the dual timers. Top is yours and bottom is the other run to beat but since he's first in his heat then the time will be his for Drew's to beat.

And notice the timer turns green as that number is now replaced as the bottom number for Drew to beat.

Europe celebrates the first clear of the First stage after Three heats!

Cool angle

That obstacle photographs well

Coin flip almost tripped him up

Ooooooh she likes him.. notice how she's totally leaning.. Giggles.

Drew totally repping Hioki's Shirt! ♥

It's ANW.. I don't care LOL  Everyone showboats :P  No he didn't showboat in Japan.

 More commercials as they remind you that Europe won last year with the sun about to come up.

Fresh from his 3rd Stage performances in both Sasuke 31 and ANW7 is Drew Dreschel ドリュー・ドレッシェル

 Long Fluff piece on him. He's been around for 4 years.

Aww He looked so young here..

 More flashbacks

 Also in 2014 he competed and won every division in the Sasuke ASEAN Open Cup earning him a spot in Sasuke 30

 He returned in 2015 (just the month before) to Sasuke 31.

In both he cleared the Crazy Cliffhanger

but for vastly different reasons he was defeated in the 3rd Stage.  Still his best year in competition.

Cool shot


and he's off to the races!

Flying through the Propeller Bar

 Seriously.. he's flying..


Sticking the Jumping Spider in faster time than most people cleared the Silk Slider!

THAT is how you do the Spider Walk!


Amazing recovery..

Every time he dismounts onto a hard surface like that I cringe.. Glad he recovered from that leg break but I still wince when I see it.

Crazy that he's that far ahead and he just about fell.  That evens up considering that Tim missed his first wall clear.

Oooh his foot..

I swear he's a cat..

Team USA losing their marbles

See the green numbers?  Drew knows how fast he's going and what he has to beat.  THAT is a great addition to the course.

And just like that, Drew beats the stage and time.

Team USA picks up the point!

Well played.

Rebel Yell!

Aww.. she's not leaning.. maybe she knows he has a girlfriend. LOL

Awesome recovery on the Sonic Curve!

First Stage is complete with an ugly competition early on with USA and Europe scraping out a couple of points and USA emphatically wining it's 2nd point on an all out race.

Popeye is next!

Curious how they are going to introduce him... 

Glamour shot

Morimoto returns

Japan birthing kittens

Arnold enjoying the gimme...

And wait.. isn't Elet retired now?
Anywho, Second Stage is Next!


Unknown said...

Wow bad move by NBC on height shaming Morimoto and possibly the majority of Japanese people.
Seriously, will NBC ever get sued by TBS for their treatment of the Japanese??? They make them look like total n00bz in 2014, and make fun of their height in 2016. Come on TBS, do something!

Unknown said...

Wait what's this final between Morimoto and Dory they didn't show?

Gamer_2k4 said...

How is it height shaming? Acknowledging that someone's size can have an effect on their performance isn't height shaming at all. Where's the ire about them repeating over and over and over again how Kacy is only five feet tall? What about when they comment on taller competitors?

The exact words on the broadcast: "Well with his size, he really needs to jump deep into the chute so his arms and legs can reach the walls. He just didn't get far enough in to have a chance. Well for perspective, this is Dustin McKinney. He's only 5'2", two inches shorter than Morimoto, but look at him land the Jumping Spider when he ran Stage 1 in the regular season. So it is possible for the shorter guys, but you have to have great technique."

The word "shaming" is thrown around so often I'm not sure the people using it even know what it means anymore. What's shameful about mentioning a person's height, particularly when they say someone that size (or smaller) can still complete the obstacle?

Arsenette said...

The Final with Morimoto and Ian Dory came at the end of the competition. I'll get to that when I get to the last blog.

Gamer if you don't see how it is shaming to do that ONLY to the last person and not the other 6 that fell that were much taller then there is nothing I can do for you. There was something wrong with the placement of the mat from 2 nights before. To say that he failed it and insinuate that it "wasn't his height" (because that was the reason why they failed obstacles before - and went out of their way to say it in previous shows) as a justification for screwing up the pitch of the obstacle was a d*ck move. Why didn't they bring that up for when Isaaac fell? Surely he had better technique... right? Morimoto has horrible technique.. right? They bothered to wait until Morimoto whom they did everything to ridicule because he was someone they wanted to cut down and shame. God forbid they had to share the spotlight with a champ of a show they refuse to show on American television. The trampoline was not placed the same way so to insinuate that "oh it's not his height we had someone shorter pass this "exact" obstacle before.. it's just that he sucks.. look.. see? It's the same obstacle.. don't blame us.. is height shaming. It's amazing I even have to explain that.

Anonymous said...

Just out of interest.... were you in attendance here Arsenette? I swear I saw you in the audience a few times.

Arsenette said...

Nope, I was not there. ;)

Gamer_2k4 said...

"The trampoline was not placed the same way so to insinuate that "oh it's not his height we had someone shorter pass this "exact" obstacle before.. it's just that he sucks.. look.. see? It's the same obstacle.. don't blame us.. is height shaming.

I'm afraid I still don't understand. Even in your above summary, the failure is blamed not on Yusuke's height but rather his technique. Are you saying it's height shaming because they mentioned his height while denying it was relevant to his success or failure? And if it's just the mention of height that makes it shaming, surely they were shaming Dustin too? And what about Kacy, who failed in 2014 BECAUSE of her height?

If you're upset that they blamed Yusuke's technique rather than the obstacle's orientation, that's fine. I agree that it's wrong to belittle a competitor's skill when the blame actually lies with whoever set up the course, and the NBC team was at fault in ignoring that as the true source of the competitors' failures. But THAT'S what you should be angry about, not that they mentioned the same attribute they also bring up with 75% of the other runners. And to be fair, when was the last time you heard any commentator, American or Japanese, blame an obstacle?

Again, I'm completely lost here, so I'll try to simplify the issue to a single question. Among Kacy, Yusuke, and Dustin, one failed because of her height, one failed regardless of his height, and one passed regardless of his height. The commentators mentioned the runner's height in all three cases. Which cases were height shaming, which weren't, and why?

Arsenette said...

Height had nothing to do with 6 people failing this particular obstacle. NBC took the time to shame him in saying that HE failed because he sucked and he shouldn't complain about his height because Dustin did it. Yuusuke never blamed his height and it wasn't even a factor for the others that failed it (including the Americans). It literally came out of left field. They completely ignored the fact that the obstacle was changed and it affected ALL of them. To single out Morimoto and say he failed because he sucked when NOT pointing out that everyone else who was taller than him also failed THEN bringing up Dustin who was shorter and passed was a way to throw Morimoto under the bus and justify to the audience that "see? don't blame us.. we didn't screw up here".

Kacy's situation was different and she didn't fail because of her height. The jumping spider is already difficult to begin with and even Luci who passed it (and is the same height..) in Sasuke in a much harder Jumping Spider (it was the furthest away). Crap happens and that's the allure of watching a show like Sasuke and ANW.

The whole point was that the two angles were not the same automatically discounting the "equal" of the argument that NBC was trying to make. They failed since it was not the same obstacle and others including 6 others failed it. They were just petty since they were yelled at in the past for large obstacles in ANW that caused shorter people to fail last year. This year they tried to curb that argument but instead looked petty because the playing field was not equal.

As for your assertion that we never blame obstacles in Sasuke.. you apparently don't watch the show or read my blog. 28-31 was littered with obstacle problems and were called out on it. As for call outs from the announcers.. you forget the "Grinding" ring that took out Nagano when he should have passed it if it wasn't that they effed up that obstacle.