SMAP’s leader, Masahiro Nakai, is not just this year’s co-emcee of NHK’s New Year’s Eve song contest again. He’s hosting specials throughout this week and next all over the TV dial.

Monday night he’s the emcee on “Ju-moji de Kaisetsu Dekitara Kako Ii!” (You’re Cool If You Can Explain It in 10 Characters!; TV Asahi, 10 p.m.), where a studio full of “excellent students,” meaning the usual complement of TV personalities “acting” like intellectuals, attempts to explain the top news stories of the year using no more than 10 written characters.

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