SMAP member exposed

A bit surprised/thoroughly amused to read in the paper today that Tsuyoshi Kusanagi, the squeakiest clean member of the squeaky clean Japanese boy band-turned-TV hosts SMAP, has been arrested having been found naked and drunk in a park in central Tokyo.

I met Tsuyoshi when I was travelling in Japan researching my book. I got to watch him and his band mates record an instalment of their No1 rated TV show, Bistro SMAP – a kind of cook-off/chat show which attracts the biggest stars in Japan, and indeed the world (Madonna, Michael Jackson, Will Smith and Matt Damon have all been on in recent years – it is well worth checking out Youtube to see their bewilderment at appearing on this classic 'Lost in Translation'-style Japanese TV show. Nicholas Cage was particularly unnerved).

(On set with SMAP)
SMAP (for Sports Music Assemble People) are pretty much the biggest stars in Japan, and have been since their J-Pop days over a decade ago. 

Since they became TV chefs they have probably done more to drag Japanese men into the kitchen than anyone else – imaging Jamie Oliver crossed with Take That (you might want to take some kind of pill afterwards).

So hearing that Tsuyoshi – renowned as the dull one – has been arrested was a bit of a shock. Like hearing that Mark Owen has been caught trying to lick a policeman, or something.

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