September 24, 2009
Wow! Evidently Japanese TV was much cooler in the 1970s.
Playgirl Q was like like Charlie’s Angels “with nudity and sexual content.” Nice! It was shown on TV Tokyo from 1974-1976, and actually pre-dated Charlies Angels by a few years.
Check out the funky theme tune.
Sequel to the long running Japanese TV detective drama of the 70s “Playgirl”, “Playgirl Q” featured Sawa Tamaki as a woman who sets up a private detective agency, recruiting a number of beautiful “thrill seekers”.
Fortunately, unlike the ladies’ magazine of the same name, “Playgirl” didn’t feature any naked blokes.
July 13, 2009
To get you in the mood for the summer beach season, here are some 80s beer commercials featuring sand, curvaceous ladies in bikinis, lecherous middle-aged men, and lashings of beer.
May 11, 2009
Here’s a cool video that was posted on JapanSoc. JapanSoc
It’s an advert for Jinro features a salaryman rapping over some smooth G-funk, about the South Korean soju, Jinro.
February 7, 2009
Ever wonder what comeback king Mickey Rourke got up to in those wilderness years between appearing in 80s movies like Nine and a Half Weeks and Angel Heart, and his recent award winning performance in The Wrestler?
He was appearing in these Japanese ads. They are worth watching for the weird and inane dialogue, and Rourke’s barely concealed disinterest.
February 2, 2009
Japanese drinks corporations, most famously Suntory Whisky, are known for paying vast sums of cash to international superstars such as Harrison Ford to add a little glitz and glamour to their products by appearing in their TV commericals. The companies agree not to show the ads outside Japan, to avoid damaging the stars’ classy reputations by exposing them as shameless sell-outs.
However, when profits are low and booze companies and forced to make cutbacks, they have to hire the likes of Jan Michael Vincent instead, (who must have thought all his Christmases had come at once when Suntory waved the cash in front of his face. “Holy shit! Where do I sign?! Somebody get me a pen before they change their minds! Quick!” He probably sneaked a few of those bottles of whisky into his bag after filming when no-one was looking, too.)
In these times of global financial crisis, Screech from “Saved by the Bell” must be sitting by the phone just waiting for that call from Suntory Whisky.
Here are a selection Japanese booze ads featuring cut-price celebs who were probably pleased to get the call. I don’t blame them (hell, if anyone from Suntory wants to put me in a commercial, I’d be more than willing.) At least they actually need the money, unlike Harrison Ford.
Actually, I feel bad putting Phoebe Cates in there, since she looks phenomenal and I worshipped her as a kid, in Fast Times at Ridgemont high and Gremlins. I’m guessing the rights to the Elvis Presley song cost more than her fee, though!
December 14, 2008
Ever wondered what Boy George got up to in those wilderness years between between releasing “Do You Really Want to Hurt Me” and being arrested for handcuffing and whipping a Norweigan male prostitute?
He was in Japan (where the androgynous man is king) and appearing in these odd-ball commericals for Takara Chu-Hai (which is apparently laced with LSD, if the commercials are anything to go by!)
I somehow doubt that Takara will be asking him back for their next advertising campaign. Not because of the rent-boy scandal, but because he got fat.
December 14, 2008
Ever wondered what John Travolta got up to in those wilderness years between between making “Saturday Night Fever” and “Pulp Fiction”?
He was strutting his funky stuff in these commericals for Takara Chu-Hai! (Chu-Hai is a fizzy alcoholic cocktail in a can.)
Travolta might be embarrassed by these ads today, but compared to the films he was making at the time, like “Saturday Night Fever 2: Staying Alive” and “Look Who’s Talking Too,” they were an artistic high point!