As if there wasn’t enough news to cover now, NHK has started sending reporters back in time on the variety show “Time Scoop Hunter” (NHK-G, Tues., 10:55 p.m.). Journalists use “warp technology” to travel to different eras to collect information about how people really lived in the past.

This week, ace reporter Sawashima (Jun Kaname) goes back to 1908, when a major American news organization decided to hold the first international beauty pageant. In Japan, a local newspaper company called Jiji Shinposha assigns a young writer to oversee the selection process to find a Japanese representative. He solicits the most attractive women throughout Japan and carries out the contest. Sawashima is surprised that none of the contestants actually show up for the pageant. The judging is carried out using photographs only.

Given current trends, by 2030 or thereabouts, every single Japanese TV personality will be the son or daughter of an earlier Japanese TV personality. That is the meta-theme of this week’s installment of “Za Sekai Gyoten News” (“The World Astonishing News”; Nippon TV, Wed., 9 p.m.), hosted by rakugo storyteller Tsurube Shofukutei and SMAP leader Masahiro Nakai.

This week, all the studio guests are children of celebrities, and they discuss the importance of genetics in relation to the studies of a British scientist who wanted to know why she gained weight so easily. She concluded that it was in her genes. The guests try to figure out exactly which “excellent qualities” they inherited from their famous fathers and mothers, as well as some not-so-excellent qualities.

CM of the week

Schick: Super-popular young TV personality Eiji Wentz is behind the wheel of a computer-generated dune buggy racing through a computer-generated desert. The buggy flies off the edge of a bluff, and as it hits the ground a large rock hurtles toward Wentz’s face and turns into water just as it strikes him.

This is supposed to illustrate the special function of the Schick Hydro 5 Power Select razor, featuring an adjustable “moisture gel box” that adds an extra cushion of liquid between the skin and the blades. It’s a razor that stresses comfort over closeness. Wentz, with his babylike complexion, is the perfect spokesperson. His beard looks like a pushover.

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