Does This Japanese Television Network Even Give a F**k?

Illustration for article titled Does This Japanese Television Network Even Give a F**k?
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Today is the third anniversary of Japan's devastating earthquake and tsunami. At the moment the earthquake hit, at 2:46pm, Japanese television networks paused to remember the deceased. That is, all except one, which showed Alien: Resurrection, instead.

Over 15,800 died in the earthquake and ensuing tsunami. Over 2,600 went unaccounted for. Areas impacted are still recovering. This is serious, sad stuff.

So, if you were in Tokyo and flipping the channels, you'd see people bowing their heads in prayer on, well, pretty much every channel. As noted by 2ch, it looked something like this:

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TV Asahi.

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NHK.

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Fuji TV.

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TBS.

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Nippon TV.

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TV Tokyo.

Many in Japan seem miffed by TV Tokyo. Others are amused. The network, which shows a wide variety of shows, is perhaps best known for its anime programming, which is quite solid. That, the network appears to care about. Everything else? Meh! And I do mean pretty much everything.

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Online in Japan, a meme image is circulating on bulletin boards summing this in a single image:

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You might say, well, this is a good break from the heavy, perhaps depressing coverage on the other networks. I might agree with you if I didn't know anything about TV Tokyo.

For years now (decades, even!), TV Tokyo has constantly not reported big important news as it broke. In Japanese, this is referred to as "The Legend of TV Tokyo" (TV Tokyo Densetsu or テレビ東京伝説).

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Big news like political elections, resignations, or scandals. Other channels interrupt their variety shows, talk shows, and cartoons. See if you can spot TV Tokyo!

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Illustration for article titled Does This Japanese Television Network Even Give a F**k?
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Illustration for article titled Does This Japanese Television Network Even Give a F**k?

Foreign politics also get the TV Tokyo shrug:

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Okay, well, maybe this is good for those who don't like politics. But surely, North Korea firing missiles over Japan would be worth interrupting TV Tokyo's regularly scheduled programming, no?

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Illustration for article titled Does This Japanese Television Network Even Give a F**k?

Guess not! And it's not like TV Tokyo doesn't have a news branch—it does. It even has newscasters stationed outside the country. Maybe it's such a barebones operation that they can't cover stuff?

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But this has been going on forever. Perhaps the thinking is that the network views itself as an option for those who don't want to know what's happening in Japan, whatever that is. And, no doubt, this does translate into ratings, or the network wouldn't keep doing it. But it comes off like TV Tokyo just doesn't not care. About anything.

Well, other than having a good anime lineup. But, you know, it's not like they're always interrupting cool anime! Sometimes the stuff that's playing on TV Tokyo during important events is utter tripe.

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Illustration for article titled Does This Japanese Television Network Even Give a F**k?

Earthquakes and natural disasters certainly should be of interest to anyone living in Japan—if anything, to make sure they and their relatives are alright. But on TV Tokyo...

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Illustration for article titled Does This Japanese Television Network Even Give a F**k?
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Illustration for article titled Does This Japanese Television Network Even Give a F**k?
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What about a solar eclipse? Now, that has to be better than anything on television, right?

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Alright, alright. With TV Tokyo being based in, well, Tokyo, you'd think the station would switch over for the announcement that the metropolis would be hosting the 2020 Olympics.

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Illustration for article titled Does This Japanese Television Network Even Give a F**k?

Guess not! But look at that pricey necklace. Ladies and gents, I give you TV Tokyo, the station that doesn't give a toss.

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ブレないテレ東 [Hayabusa]

テレビ東京伝説 [Rakuten]

Photo: きりしまのおみくじ, Sakura, ニュー速, Denik824, テレビ東京伝説, Wolfrandre, Stuffpoint , Trend_Today

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To contact the author of this post, write to bashcraftATkotaku.com or find him on Twitter @Brian_Ashcraft.

Kotaku East is your slice of Asian internet culture, bringing you the latest talking points from Japan, Korea, China and beyond. Tune in every morning from 4am to 8am.

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DISCUSSION

shippoyasha
Shippoyasha

Well, other than having a good anime lineup. But, you know, it's not like they're always interrupting cool anime! Sometimes the stuff that's playing on TV Tokyo during important events is utter tripe.

I'm all for what TV Tokyo is doing personally. If every other station will go out of its way to air some major disaster or happening, then the station has no onus to tune in. I am all for there being options towards entertainment to take a break from the constantly dour newsfeed. Especially the kind of overzealous media journalism of Japan.

I don't know about anyone else, but politician elections, scandals and resignations is not exactly noteworthy considering just how corrupt the government truly can be. To me, the most silly 'tripe' programming is better than giving some horrid governmental stuff any more attention than needed by going on any news site and reading it for a minute.