Language | MORNING ENGLISH

Let's discuss comedians in trouble

This week’s featured article

JIJI

Hiroyuki Miyasako, a member of comedy duo Ameagari Kesshitai, offered an apology at a news conference on July 20 for performing at an event hosted by an organized crime group and receiving money from it. “I would like to apologize to everyone,” Miyasako, who had his contract with entertainment company Yoshimoto Kogyo Co. terminated a day earlier, said at the news conference, held in Tokyo. “I’m really sorry.”

Miyasako, 49, said that he is “not thinking” of retiring from the entertainment industry at the moment. Ryo Tamura, 47, a member of comedy duo London Boots Ichi-go Ni-go, who also appeared in the event in question, joined the news conference. The two bowed deeply.

In late June, Yoshimoto Kogyo suspended Miyasako, Tamura and nine other comedians for attending the event. On July 13, the company said that Miyasako and Tamura received ¥1 million and ¥500,000, respectively, from the crime group as payment.

Asked why he did not hold a news conference soon after the scandal came to light, Miyasako said that the entertainment company stopped him from holding such an event. According to Miyasako, he informed the company in early June about receiving the payment from the group, but Yoshimoto Kogyo decided to wait and see what happened. Miyasako said that the company threatened to fire everyone involved in the scandal if he held a news conference.

Yoshimoto Kogyo President Akihiko Okamoto was expected to hold his own news conference on July 22 to explain the situation.

Miyasako initially said he did not receive money from the crime group. But at Saturday’s news conference, he admitted he lied. “I was trying to save my own skin,” he said. Tamura said that he was “dissatisfied” with the company for not allowing a news conference to be held. “I’ve been banned from telling the truth, and I can’t stand it any more.”

“I personally want my contract (with Yoshimoto) to be ended,” he added. Tamura said that he is “unable to think” about retiring from the showbiz industry at the moment.

First published in The Japan Times on July 21.

Warm up

One minute chat about comedy

Game

Collect words related to scandal:

e.g., gossip, newspaper, paparazzi

New words

1) save one’s own skin: to protect oneself from trouble without concern for others, e.g. “Mike saved his own skin and told the teacher about his friend’s misbehavior.”

2) showbiz: entertainment world (show business), e.g. “Cher is an icon in showbiz.”

Guess the headline

Scandal-hit c_ _ _ _ _ _ _ s apologize for receiving money for c_ _ _ _ group event

Questions

1) Why did Hiroyuki Miyasako apologize?

2) What did Miyasako lie about?

3) Why didn’t Miyasako hold a news conference soon after the scandal came to light?

Let’s discuss the article

1) How often do you see comedians on TV or hear them on radio, etc.?

2) What do you think about this kind of apology-focused news conference?

3) Do you think Yoshimoto Kogyo made the wrong decision?

Reference

バラエティー番組のみならず、ニュースのコメンテーターもお笑い芸人が担当することが増える中、その最大勢力である事務所が揺れています。

ことの発端である反社会勢力イベントへの参加のみならず、その後の対応により事態が深刻化したことは危機管理の重要性を体現しているかのようです。

こうした芸能界の不祥事を防ぐために、どのようなことが望まれているのでしょうか。朝英語の会に参加し皆さんで話し合ってみましょう。

「朝英語の会」、はじめてみませんか?

「朝英語の会」とは、お友達や会社の仲間とThe Japan Timesの記事を活用しながら、楽しく英語が学べる朝活イベントです。この記事を教材に、お友達や会社の仲間を集めて、「朝英語の会」を立ち上げませんか? 朝から英字新聞で英語学習をする事で、英語を話す習慣が身に付き、自然とニュースの教養が身につきます。
「朝英語の会」の立ち上げ、もしくは参加に興味がある方はこちらまで。
株式会社ジャパンタイムズ「 朝英語の会」運営事務局
Phone: 03-3453-2337 (平日10:00 – 18:00)
email: info@club.japantimes.co.jp | http://jtimes.jp/asaeigo