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susan boiled

Both were plucked from obscurity before going on to become superstars.

Both found fame and fortune through the art of singing.

Both are human beings.

But that's pretty much where the similarities end. One is more likely to be found enjoying haggis rather than sushi, but then Shingo always did have strange eating habits.

Shingo Katori of boy band SMAP.

SMAP (short for Some Mammals Are Potty) is Japan's longest running man band, formed in 1972 and still going strong. It comprises five members, all of whom spend most of their time on TV singing, acting, cooking and endorsing a wide range of household products.

On their recent TV show, which usually features singing, acting, cooking and the endorsement of a wide range of household products, they did a piece where Shingo got made up as Susan Boyle.

They recreated the Britain's Got Talent show where Susan first appeared in front of Simon Cowell in a brown dress, although they had to reshoot that scene so Simon could slip into something more appropriate.

On the SMAP show, another member of the man band played the part of Simon Cowell....

Left: Simon Cowell. Right: Fully clothed Tsuyoshi Kusanagi.

And a woman in a blonde wig played the part of Amanda Holden....

Left: Amanda Holden. Right: Fully clothed Amanda Holden :(

And then onto the stage walked Shingo who, in preparation for the part, had either spent a good few hours in the make-up chair or else spent more than a good few hours down at his local Mr Donuts....

Left: Shingo. Right: Susan

Then it all went a bit weird. As if it wasn't already a little odd....

She starts singing Amazing Grace, but every so often glances off-stage at someone in the wings....someone doing something sinister in the shadows. No, it wasn't Takuya Kimura performing an indecent act on Hank Marvin; it seemed to be someone holding a microphone.

At this point the truth begins to dawn.....

It's not Susan Boyle singing. She's miming. The person in the wings is singing for her - but the singer is making a hash of it, making poor Susan look like a right old mess.

SMAP appear to be suggesting that Boyle is a fraud.

As Boyle messes up, Cowell spots the shadowy figure in the wings, and the panel of judges suspect Boyle has been miming. Boyle maintains that it was she who'd been singing, as the person in the wings runs off.

"Is that Elaine Paige over there?"

And that's where it ended, though there may or may not be another part of this story to come.

Here's a shortened version of the SMAP show featuring Shingo Boyle....

Running time: 150 seconds.
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On Sunday, 21 February, 2010, Blogger Katie Muffett said:

You think you're no longer one of those people who finds Japanese telly weird...then it gets weirder. I have absolutely no idea what this was about.  

On Monday, 22 February, 2010, Blogger meemalee said:

I bloody love SMAP  

On Tuesday, 23 February, 2010, Anonymous Ender's Girl said:

Well, that was vintage Shingo, is all I can say. I also used to get weirded out by the J-humor, but those dudes do have a way of growing on you. =D

Btw, I don't know if you were just being tongue-in-cheek when you said that SMAP was formed in 1972, because they actually debuted in 1991. As of '72, three of the five weren't even born yet. =)  

On Tuesday, 23 February, 2010, Anonymous Anonymous said:

That guy looks like a frog.

Is that a particularly bad picture of him, or does he in fact walk around looking like a frog?  

On Friday, 26 February, 2010, Anonymous Adrian said:

I'm horrified, amused, and confused at the same time. Funny stuff.  

On Monday, 15 March, 2010, Blogger Blue Shoe said:

SMAP! [fist pump]  

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