Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Dwayne "The Ninja" Johnson

Casually scrolling through Twitter (as one does), when this tweet from the one and only The Rock shows up:

Naturally my Ninja senses were tingling all over the place and I had to get a closer look at that tweet from Zac Efron:

Apart from the fact that I am freaking out about his six pack (it just doesn't seem right) I am also wondering about this Ninja course. Did they build an actual Ninja Warrior course? How? Where is it? Are they gonna use it for something besides Baywatch training?

And most importantly: is there a video of The Rock taking on the course?

I must investigate further .... until then

Sayonara ninja lovers!

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Ninja Warrior SE S02E02 recap

I spotted Mårten Nylén when I was at work a couple of days ago (I work at a museum) and as usual when someone mildly famous comes by I mentioned it to my coworkers. Basically got a blank stare in return so I had to text Chriss who reacted much more reasonably, aka by sending me back a message all in caps. Excuse us for being fangirls ...

Aaaanyway, this is what went down in episode 2 of season 2!

Quite a few new obstacles, and they're getting really hard. One clear, and while I won't immediately spoil you as to who that was, maybe you can all make a qualified guess ...

So, what we think happened in this episode was that the fifteen people who made it from the Stockholm qualifiers are now in the Stockholm regional finals, and from there five people will make it to the big finale. We think. It's always a bit confusing to us. 

First out: Askia Linder, who failed on the rather tricky wind chimes. Apparently they're from ANW, but Chriss and I recognize them as the tampon/dildo obstacles from Sasuke 31. I kinda liked Askia in the first ep, so I'm sad he didn't make it, but I'm laughing really hard at Mårten's comment about how "he looks like a slap in the face". What?

I completely missed Phillip Lloyd Rochester stealing Usain Bolt's lightning bolt-thing last week. Duuude, you're cool and all, but you weren't even the fastest person through stage one, are you sure you can live up to that gesture? Really?

Well, Philip made it all the way to Cannonball Alley (know as the Chaos balls in Swedish ... and for once I'm gonna say that the Swedish name is a way better name than the English one), and what I found fascinating is that when he got there he looked REALLY tired. We've seen people fail in the most spectacular of ways in Sasuke, but I can't remember anyone making it look like it's as exhausting as that. And look at those muscles, he's not really a weak guy, is he? Then again, Kanno has a lot of muscles and he nevers looks tired ...

Yeah I just wanted an excuse to post this gif again ...
Johannes Ojanpera was the first person this year to struggle with the wall, but after Chriss shouted "I've seen shorter people climb higher walls!" he scaled it like it was no big deal. Maybe he was just messing with us the first two tries ...

Then we get another proof that the rules can be a little too confusing when Adam says that "everyone here has already cleared the Warped Wall" because ... no, they did not. Ten people cleared it, the other five where just fast enough to get to the final anyway. Keep up with the rules, dude!

They saved the best for last: Alexander Mars, Henning Attlin and Victor Jacobsson (who had the fastest time in the first episode). How did they do? Well ...

Of COURSE the one true Swedish ninja Alexander Mars made it all the way to the top. Honestly, he made it look so easy, and totally proved why he - above everone else - deserved a shot at Sasuke last year. Actually, just watch this clip of him doing it:

BEAUTIFUL. Look at him doing the chaos balls - SO EASY. No one else even made it past them and he made it look like he was just rolling out of bed in the morning or something. I think we're starting to fangirl Alexander Mars pretty hard to, ooops.

Henning, however, did not do as well. He's never been our fave, but he is definitely good at what he does and fast ... so what the hell even happened here? He almost slipped getting off the Quintuple Step, barely landed on the mat after the Log Grip and while he did the Paddle Boards easily he failed competely at the Jump Hang. That seemed very out of character for him, even though he's fast, he's never really been careless before. Oh well, it's Sasuke Ninja Warrior, these things happen.

Lastly, Victor Jacobsson. I may be wrong, but I swear his tee touched the water here! It doesn't show in the image, but in the video at least I think there are cleraly ripples on the surface of the water. Though his tee doesn't really look wet later on, but I don't know ... I don't know ...

He later failed at the Chaos Balls, but due to the confusing rules still made it to the finals along with these other four. Even though only Alexander Mars made it through this stage, I like how different all these competitors are from each other. Johannes Ojanpera is nimble, Phillip Lloyd Rochester is strong and Victor Jaconsson is fast ... but what is gonna be most useful the next time we see them? I guess time will tell ...

A closer look at the second stage will be up this week, then next week Chriss is coming to stay with me for a few days, so we plan on catching up to all the eps we've missed. Next week some of our favs from last year returns, so we are VERY excited.

Until then ....

Sayonara ninja lovers!

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Ninja Warrior SE season 2 stage 1

It's so cute that you guys miss us. :') We're defintely going to recap the rest of the season, but somehow we're both very busy right now. When we started this blog Chriss lived with me, which made watching together very easy. These days, though, we live in different parts of the country, so finding a time where we both can stream the eps can take some planning. But we'll try to recap at least episode 2 this week!

I figured that before that we could take a look at the new first stage. I think it's a vast improvement from last year, because it doesn't look easy, it looks really hard.

Let's break it down!

We start with a classic - the Quintuple Step. I don't know how far away the steps were last year, but it feels like the gaps are larger this year? Apparently these are 2,5 meters apart, which is one small step for a giant, one giant step for a ninja ... ehh, or something like that.

"The Magnet", a lamer version of the Cross Slider, but since this is first stage, I think it's hard enough. People in the first episode did better on this one than I thought they would.


"The Gummi Bridge", or Floating Tiles as it's apparently known as in English. Three tiles that you must jump on, and no touching the rope. This was the one that killed most people in the first episode, and I can see why. It doesn't seem like much of a problem, but of course it would be. 

A modified version of Jump Hang, with something similar to the Chain See-Saw from Sasuke 27. You have to grab onto the hanging cones before you can swing over to the net itself. Surprisingly, most people that made it past the Gummi Bridge had no trouble with this one. 


"Double Ladder" or Double Tilt Ladder, apparently straight outta American Ninja Warrior season 6. I thought that would be hard with the tilting and how much arm muscles it required, but NOPE, people made it seem fucking easy. Of course they did.


Ahhh, it's starting to feel a lot like Sasuke. The classic Warped Wall, but slightly higher than last year because fuck you, that's why. It's now 4,26 m, but I'm not entirely sure how much higher that is because I don't think they mentioned the height last year. High enough, I should guess.

And that's it. A post on stage 2 will follow once we've, you know, seen it.

Until then ... sayonara ninja lovers!

Monday, February 8, 2016

Ninja Warrior SE S02E01 recap


Did you miss our recaps? We sure missed writing them! I was talking to Chriss how I don't see why I even pay money to get more TV channels because I only watch Netflix these days, but now I see the error of my ways: how else would I watch Ninja Warrior SE? That's worth paying for if nothing else is.

In season 2 it seems Kanal 5 has decided to up their game, in good and bad ways. The good, we'll get to, but the bad is that it's becoming even more similar to ANW. Like we needed that. Now we have five "regional" try-outs and then everyone will meet in the final. This episode is the Stockholm try-outs, followed by Stockholm stage 2 next week, unless I completely misheard. With five try-outs (Stckholm, Göteborg, Malmö, Umeå and Karlstad) that would result in ten episode of regional try-outs ... and then how many eps for the final?

It's too complicated - what's wrong with just going through all the stages at the same time? It's especially ridiculous since Sweden is a pretty tiny country - I can see why having people fly all over the US doesn't really work, but I'm pretty sure taking the obstacle course all over the country is way harder than just letting the competitors come to Stockholm.

But what do I know?

Here's Stockholm stage one, in front of Karlberg Castle. This is where we get to the good: stage 1 is WAY better than last year. Seeing this even my hubris has to take a step back to admit that I might not pass it easily. Possibly not at all. That thought barely occured to me when I watched season one, not until we got to the later stages. I'll post a longer post describing the stage, but for now let's take a look at how people did in the first ep:

There's meant to be 150 contestants, which means we saw about a fifth of them tonight. Of those, ten passed the course, and HALF of them made it to stage 2, because we still have that dumb rule about people not clearing the course making it to the next one so we can fill a certain number. Idk, I'd get that if there was a risk of no one making it past stage one, as sometimes happens in Sasuke, but I think ten would've been a respectable number of passes without consolation places being handed out. Oh well, we've talked about that before ...

First out there's Dana Star:

I don't mind the cockiness, but dude, you've got some way to go before you're reaching true ninja levels:

Gotta kiss myself I'm so pretty ...
Of course, Dana seems aware of this, later saying:

"I think I'm 90% ninja."

Chriss screamed "EXCUSE YOU, WE ARE 150% NINJA" and I think if he had been 60 % units more ninja he might not have been the first (but certainly not last) victim of the Gummi Bridge. My consolation prize to him is that at least he had the best name of the first ep!

Our first clear of the evening is Askia Linder, who is describe by commentator Adam Alsing as a "looking like a mix between Groucho Marx and Borat". Sometimes I don't agree with Adam, but that description is hard to argue with. He looks a bit dorky here, but apparently he is nothing of the sort:

During lunch break as a bank man he likes to go to the skatepark and show the kids what's up. Gotta respect that.

We saw ten clears, and two of them are people we remember from last year. Henning Attlin, apparently know as the "guy with the wolf stare" (was that really his nickname last year? I feel I would remember), who quite obviously was eager to try the course again. He did not get the best time and while he tried to play it off I'm sure it pissed him off a little. It's gonna be interesting to see him channel that wolf-rage in second stage, for sure.

And of course, our favourite ninja Alexander Mars was back to defend the title!

And we got to see some footage of him taking on Sasuke 31 stage 1, which was awesoooooooooome since he was rudely cut from the Japanese broadcast. Or, well, not rudely, but you know ... we wanted to see him.

Adam then explains that he qualified for American Ninja Warrior where he "got through stage one and two" which is ........ not techincally a lie but also not the truth at all. Unless he was on the actual ANW, which I doubt, we're talking about ANW USA vs The World (in the footage he is wearing his green team Europe outfit), and he didn't pass stage one OR stage two there. He failed the Jumping Spider in stage one and the Crazy Cliffhanger (which wasn't really crazy???) in stage three and didn't get a single point for team Europe. :( Okay, so explaining the complicated rules of USA vs The World in a throwaway line was maybe a bit much, but why not just say he was choosen to compete for Team Europe in USA vs The World?

Anyway, Alexander Mars passed, so no worries there, but as we all know, no one is safe in Sasuke, and no one is safe in Ninja Warrior Sweden either.

Here are the ten guys who passed stage one in Stockholm:

And here are the five guys who made it by being the fastest, despite failing. The ... Fast 5. Haha!

So there you have it, the first episode, quickly summed up! Later this week I'll post a more in-depth post about the new stage one and the obstacles, and Chriss might give you some of our opinions on USA vs The World ... though possibly after we censor it for curse words there might not be much left to post.

Until then ... sayonara ninja lovers!

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Throwback Thursday

Ahh, a year ago ... when  I first watched Ninja Warrior Sweden and then convinced Chriss that watching three hours of a japanese game show would be a good way to spend our time. My Timehop actually informed me that February 2nd was the day when we watched Sasuke for the first time.
Back then we didn't know anyone's name of course, so we had to come up with creative nicknames, like The Hat Man (Shingo), The Tree Cutter (Asa), Angry Trainer (Mr. Sasuke) or The Guy Who's Father Wasn't Dead (Kawaguchi Tomohiro) ... funny, we never had a nickname for Nagano, except maybe That Guy. We could tell he was special even before we knew who he was!

Tonight the first episode of Ninja Warrios SE season 2 airs and we could not be more excited. Sort of. I'd be more excited if I were in it, ehehehe! But it's gonna be great, spring truly is the Ninja Warrior/Sasuke season so we'll pop out of the snow, like daisies, and hopefully blog more. I know you've been dying to read our most excellent recaps.

Anyway, Chriss is staying with me this weekend, so we'll get caught up on Ninja Warrior SE and watch USA vs The World (no spoilers, please! Though I think I already know how it went because Drew Drechsel spammed my entire twitter account with praise during the broadcast. Drew, you're still the only American we like but that's pushing it, dude!). Except some recaps and general fangirling after the weekend.

Until then ...

Sayonara ninja lovers!!

Sunday, December 20, 2015

The reports of our death have been greatly exaggerated ...

Okay, so I realize that having the last post be "we're not dead" and then not posting for six months is a bit ... I don't know what. Ironic? It's not great. To be fair, I broke my ankle not long after that post and moved back with my parents, so it's not like I could gif anything for quite a while, not having access to my computer and stuff.

Also I was not choosen to be on season 2 of Ninja Warrior SE. Sad face. Though apparently it wasn't filmed until September (I really thought it would be earlier in the summer), so I couldn't have been there even if I had been, with the broken ankle and all. Thank you, universe, for making sure that wasn't gonna happen.

I guess there's always next year.

Anyway, I don't know when exactly season 2 airs, but this blog will be back to recapping it by then, I promise. Before that, we've got USA vs The World to look forward to on January 31 2016. Our very own Alexander Mars will be on team Europe, so you bet we're gonna be watching and covering that. Though I'm not sure which team we'll be rooting for - are we forever team Japan, or do we have to get our patriotism on and root for the Europeans this time?

Well, however it turns out, I'm sure will be screaming about cheating and how we will never trust NBC. That's what usually happens.

Until then - sayonara ninja lovers. Oh, and merry christmas!

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

We're still alive!

Well, sort of. It's just that the swedish summer's gotten to us. And maybe the result of Sasuke 31 as well ... (There were a lot of screaming, depression and excitement involved when we watched it.)

We are planning to write some sort of review of Sasuke 31, and we have plans for a few other blog posts as well, so stay tuned!

Until then, sayonara ninja lovers!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

The new obstacles

Okay, so here are the obstacles that have been confirmed by Inui's Twitter for Sasuke 31:

So, for our first obstacle, we're bringing back the classic Barrel Climb. Personally, I don't really love this one as the start, I think Quintuple Step to Tarzan Rope is way more fun. This one is only fun when people realized they are screwed, lies down and pretty much accepts death. I know it's a classic, but still ...

I can't believe the TACKLE MACHINE is back!? Of all fucking obstacles? This one was in like half a competition back in the 90s, and I just assumed that we all moved on a pretended it was never a thing. But nope, it's back. It does not really fit well into the first stage, you know ...

There's supposed to be a third new obstacle on first stage, but so far no one seems to know what that is. I didn't really understand this tweet, but running it through Google Translate made it a little more coherent:

"New third area, "Music Box" was scattered forgot to take photos w
I'm sorry"
My guess is this means the third new first stage obstacle is called Music Box. I know what this means!!!

You know I'm right.
I googled "Salmon Radar", but all I found was this:

Which means that they're either going golfing (I guess Shingo and Hioki would be happy to hear that!) or they're brining back the Big Boulder:


This doesn't seem right. Let's see what Google translate has to say:

"2nd Stage minor renewed salmon ladder to climb and down."
Ooohhh, another Salmon Ladder that you climb up and down. That actually sounds a lot more reasonable, now that you mention it ...

Here's something brand-new:  a third stage obstacle called the Sidewinder! I think you grab onto a penis and swing across, but I'm not sure. Unless you spin on them and them jump, but they seem way too far apart for that.


Here we see that we start with the Drumhopper before getting to Siderwinder. That's cool, I really like the Drumhopper. It's exactly the kind of shit I'm expected from Sasuke third stage.

And I don't know about you guys but I've always felt the Vertical Limit was waaay too easy, so naturally adding a sideways jump was the only way to go. Like. Of course. Especially after the Crazy Cliffhanger - the obstacle I think they wanted gone because it was too hard??? This makes sense.

Also, notice how the CCH has water underneath it instead of fire, I'm gonna take that as the final proof that I didn't win that obstacle contest ...

Actually ... does any of these obstacles look like something we were shown in that broadcast? I can't find them among my screencaps at least.

Oh, well, we'll have to wait until the broadcast I guess. Until then - sayonara ninja lovers!

Monday, May 25, 2015

What happens on Sasuke, stays on Sasuke ... apparently

Sasuke 31 is over! If I hadn't had Eurovision to worry about (FUCK YEAH SWEDEN), I don't think what I would've done with myself this weekend. Twitter has been way too silent, if you're asking me, but at least we know a few thing. Such as the running order for the contestants, which can be found here in Japanese, or partly translated here. Us hipsters are very happy to see the cute guy Matachi Ryo as #100, though we are also upset that some of our faves are missing entirely, like Wakky, Kinnikun, Lee En-Chih and Mr Octopus Man.

But, our very own Swedish ninja Alexander Mars got #84, which is cool. We are of course hoping he did well, and I did stalk down this pic of him in front of final stage:

The only American we like Drew Drechsel also took a bunch of selfies, which is not something that can be said for any of the other ninjas. Excuse you!? I refuse to believe there wasn't a single selfiestick present, and I can only assume these are being kept from us for some devious reason. So not fetch.


Since Drew is the only one delivering on the selfie front I'll cheer a little extra for him when I finally get to watch the competition.

Oh, and Inui retweeted these two. I don't know who they are (except one is an atlethe?), but they look awesome and dare I dream about a girl clearing first stage again???

Here are some more official tweets from the competition:

The new start line! And apparently they were up until 2 pm... wait that's not right. I'm assuming it's actually 2 am. People were apparently happy, so good for them!

For this we can conclude that they did first and second stage during the first day, and then had to wait until it was dark the second day to finish filming the last two stages.

As far as I know Sasuke is usually filmed during one day, but here it's explained that it's been split into two days for safety reasons. I guess that isn't as hardcore, but it's not as third and final stage would EVER be easy, even with some rest beforehand...

While everyone talked about the next day of filming, Shingo tweeted about his newly opened gym. Does this mean he wasn't there the second day, or is he just trying to throw us off???

Third stage! At least we know someone got there. Actually ...

It seems confirmed that someone even reached final stage! I can't even begin to list the people I want there, but Asa and Ryo are high on the list (especially Asa. I will cry if he doesn't make it past the crazy cliffhanger this year) ... and let's be real, I would love for Alexander Mars to get there too, but fuck if I think he will. The Swedish Ninja Warrior course just isn't enough preparation for Sasuke.

And then it was over! Out of nowhere. It seems to have gone well, and even if we don't know if someone will Kanzenseiha (no I don't think that's a verb, no I don't care) this year, we will get to see all four stages which is AWESOME.

Inui also tweeted about some of the new obstacles, but you'll have to wait for my post on those until tomorrow. There are rumors floating around saying Sasuke 31 will be broadcast on July 1st, but as far as I can tell that's not confirmed yet. We will keep you posted!

Until then ... sayonara ninja lovers!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

It's so close we can taste it

Sasuke 31 starts taping in FIVE DAYS. That's in no time at all!

As if things weren't real enough, THEY ARE CONSTRUCTING THE STAGES NOW. Yesterday there was even a Nico Nico broadcast where they showed the assembly of Final Stage, but of course I totally missed out on that by sleeping through it. I thought the point of liking a Japanese show was that things would not air in the middle of the night??? Okay so it wasn't actually middle of the night, but who is awake at 6 am on a Saturday? Not me, that's for sure.

Oh, well, luckily there's a good recap of it over at Rambling Rican's, so I know what I missed, which wasn't much. Not many surprises there: I didn't expect Akiyama or Bunpei to show up, nor any of the other older competitors. I won't miss the Hedgehog or Long Jump too much either, and I'm glad that there's at least one Warped Wall! Now, if they could just bring back Half-Pipe Attack, aka the best First Stage obstacle ever, that would be awesome.

Anyway, we are not the only ones who are excited! I took to Twitter to see how our favourite competitors are preparing for the competion next week:


Urushihara and a mysterious masked man took to the pool for some Backstream-training. Hmm, I wonder who THAT could be ...

Nice, hooray! Yeah, I don't think anyone was surprised by that reveal. We all know this obstacle is their nemesis ...

Sorry, but this was the greatest moment in television history and no one can tell me differently.


The start of the final stage construction! It's weird, because I know I read somewhere that Final Stage construction doesn't start until they're sure people will actually compete in it, but I always thought that sounded like total bullshit and now I know it's not true. It is finished in just a day though!

Words cannot describe how excited I am for the steel muscle festival!

Oh, and more great news: MR SASUKE IS NOW ON TWITTER. I haven't told Chriss this yet, because I wanted to dramatically reveal it on the blog. He's not competing, but the black tigers are and seems to be ready! I hope they do well, they have been a bit disappointing in the last Sasukes. I'm also kinda glad Mr Sasuke is not competing, because that means he won't be cut like last year.

Of course Urushihara is eating Shingo's wife's homemade cake, that guy tweets about food 90% of the time. I didn't screen print it but I'm pretty sure I also saw Kanno saying something about drinking beer for protein. The Sasuke diets are very interesting. Shingo himself seems to mostly be talking about the gym he's about to open and not preparing too much, but then again we all know that no amount of training is going to save him from Shingo'ing it up at some point...

I don't know what this means, but whatever. This is the amount of selfies we're already getting, and even though we won't know the results of Sasuke 31 for months I AM SO EXCITED FOR THE AMOUNT OF SELIFES THAT WILL BE TAKEN. I will be fucking pissed if no one brings their selfie stick to the competition to give us at least SOMETHING.

Someone went to pray for a good Sasuke and safe competitors. Good idea, we do want to see spectacular fails and clears, but we don't want people to actually hurt themselves while they're at it. Except for Torisawa Katsuhide, of course, but hurting himself is kinda his thing.

The final adjustments! I'm not sure what the bathing is about, but Green Mountain of course means Midoiryama so I think we all know what they're preparing for. I think this is Kanno Hitoshi, Kishimoto Shinya (third stage in Sasuke 30), Kawaguchi Tomohiro (final stage in Sasuke 30) and Nagasaki Shunsuke (also third stage in Sasuke 30). Though why an earlier tweet from Nagasaki Shunsuke was in Chinese I don't know ...

Well, that's it for now, but I'm sure we'll all just be more and more psyched for the next few days. I'm extremely jealous of anyone who gets to go see it being taped, but you know ... next year I'll win Ninja Warrior SE and then I'll be there, so it's okay. For now let's just wish Rambling Rican a nice trip, and hope that Alexander Mars does GREAT in the competition as well. We're rooting for you, Alexander!! We're all rooting for you!

But until we know more ... Sayonara ninja lovers!