MXC – Takeshi’s Castle

Posted: February 13, 2013 in Uncategorized

America has both influenced and adapted traits from challenging obstacle course game shows from all over the world.  Previously, I have shared information on the American based show, Wipeout, being twisted and aired in Canada and also the original Japanese series Ninja warrior being brought to America.  Another program that relates but does not necessarily fall into the same category as these two is MXC or Most Extreme Elimination Challenge, which aired on Spike TV on April 13, 2003.

MXC

This show is a direct re-edit of Japan’s game show Takeshi’s Castle. The original Japanese version of this show aired in 1986 until 1989 and consisted of two teams of contestants competing to win points.  The ones portrayed as the hosts, Kenny and Vic, in the American version are actually a count named Takeshi and his assistant creating challenges in order to fight off an opposing military leader and his troops.  The main objective was to eventually reach the Takeshi’s Castle. There were a variety of challenges that players competed in, usually four per episode, but sometimes as many as six. The challenges are extremely hard, near impossible, and a majority of the contestants fail to complete the challenges falling into the surrounding mud pits.  A few fan-favorite and recurring games included the Log Drop, Wall Bangers, Dope on a Rope, Rotating Surfboard of Death, and Sinkers and Floaters, and many others. Instead of creating a show based off a foreign game show, the creators of MXC used the footage from the original Takeshi’s Castle episodes but added comical voice-over narration.  People were given names of celebrities, network bosses, or family members and friends of the producers or voice actors and team names were created to continue the comical feel of the show.  Many of the original Japanese actors got massive career re-boots because of the popularity of the show in the US.  The American version brought features such as the “MXC impact replay” to resemble a sports-themed instant replay.

 bonk_small

  This also brought humiliation to the contestants and allowed the audience to witness their failed attempts.  In the case where someone does complete a challenge, their team is awarded 1 or 2 points depending on the obstacle.  As anticipated, the team with the most points at the end of the episode is declared the winner but no prizes are awarded since this show is not taped live.  This American re-edit really focuses on the comical side of things, playing on the audience’s emotions and includes sometimes-inappropriate humor.   The producers of MXC had no idea what the contestants of the original show were saying and the writers based the dialogue on sexual puns, pop culture, or mocking various celebrities, athletes, sports announcers, and politicians.  This example of a foreign influenced obstacle course game show differs from the others that I have mentioned in that all the video content is still the property of Tokyo Broadcasting System while at the same time being edited by RC Entertainment.  This is not a traditional form of influence but still constitutes how foreign media has made its way to America.

mxc1

 

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