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You may have seen clips from this show on the web (including this one where the contestants have to recited a tongue twister or else get smacked in the balls). If you don't know the background, the show appears to be a series of small, cruel challenges, none with an obvious reward for winning and all involving serious physical or psychological pain. You may speculate that the contestants are desperate commoners looking for prize money to pay for, say, an operation for a family member. This is fortunately not the case.
The contestants are comedians, attempting to launch themselves to stardom by receiving a spring-loaded lever blow to their groin. It's kind of like Saturday Night Live only instead of proving their comedic talent by creating characters and being funny, the comedians are tortured.
Each challenge is called a Batsu, or punishment game, which involves completing nearly impossible tasks like not laughing while watching other contestants suffer humiliation and excruciating pain, or dressing up as female comic book characters and ordering spaghetti. The punishment for not completing these tasks is usually a sound whipping, but occasionally a friendly spanking or nipple clamping is in order.
Why It's Insane:
If you watched that video and don't think it was self explanatory then you're either a robot, masochist, masochistic robot, creator of the show or the masochistic robot that created this show. If you are one of the above, or if you're afraid to watch Japanese videos at work (and rightfully so), then let us elaborate. This clip features forced nose hair removal, asphyxiation by "bad smell air," and a grown man sobbing like a little girl as an old man gums his ear.
What's worse is that the contestants have to be restrained while doing most of these tasks. Meanwhile, their comrades try not to laugh too loud at their friend's misfortune lest they find themselves on the business end of the slapping machine's whirling dervish of blows.