VS Arashi (VS 嵐) is a game show hosted by the idol group Arashi, who compete against a different team of actors or comedians every week. This time the opposing team is a bit unique, but before we get to that, the Arashi members seem to be clustered a bit closer than usual.

What are they hiding?

He’s . . . wearing . . . why? I’ve got to hand it to Ninomiya-kun, though – he’s certainly found a consistent way to make the openings interesting.

Anyway, here are the guests:

That’s right! It’s a match of little kids (plus one Enari Kazuki-san) against adults! The kids are: Suzuki Fuku-kun, Kobayashi Seiran-chan, Tani Kanon-chan, Kumada Koko-chan, Kumada Sea-chan, and Kuga Kotomi-chan. So, we can’t really expect intense competition since the Arashi members will have to give handicaps at every turn. This is really an episode for those who appreciate the sort of cuteness that the Japanese seem to revel in. I know cute when I see it (though I’m usually saved the trouble of detection because every woman in the scene immediately says “kawaii”), but I don’t find it particularly entertaining.

The Arashi give Enari-san a bit of a ribbing – bringing up his role as Nishikido-kun’s manager in Papadol!, then learn that he’s unexpectedly younger than they are.

The “plus one” guests added to the Arashi team were the comedy pair Fujiwara.

The first game was Dual Curling, with Suzuki-kun and Kanon-chan for the kiddie team, and Ohno-san, Sakurai-san, and Fujimoto-san up for the Arashi team.

Right away, it’s apparent that there’s something wrong here. The fact that the kids are placed closer to the bulls-eye than the Arashi team makes sense since they don’t have as much strength, but why is there only two of them?

Ah, they have help:

Actually, only the red Yeti, called Mukku, helps in this round. The other – the dinosaur Gachapin – sits this one out. Will Mukku be enough to help Suzuki-kun and Kanon-chan defeat the Arashi team?

The second round of Dual Curling featured Koko-chan, Seiran-chan, and Enari-san for the kid’s team against MatsuJun, Aiba-kun and Haranishi-san.

This time, the highlight was Koko-chan doing an impression of the Japanese Columbo – Furuhata Ninzaburo (a tremendously famous police detective drama).

Then Enari-san was forced to do a monomane of Rola-san – something everybody can do, but he managed to do badly.

Enari-san also did a famous line from when he was a child star (from the soap opera Wataru Seken wa oni Bakari) to great applause and demands for an encore.

The next game was Jungle Bingo, where Enari-san tried his best to help out his young cohort, but the adult-sized jungle proved too daunting.

Did the Arashi team take it easy on their turn? Not at all.

Afterward, there was discussion of Fujimoto-san’s confusion – he had been shouting to Aiba-kun at the top of the cube when Aiba was actually standing right next to him on the ground.

The third game was Pinball Runner. The runner for the kid’s team was Kuga Kotomi-chan, and everybody else on the team was on the command platform.

MatsuJun decided to give the kids the Arashi team’s pink balls. Will it be enough to even the odds?

Kuga-chan is still nervous and uncertain.

For Arashi, Ninomiya-kun was chosen as a runner, dressed to do pretty much the opposite of running. He decided to aim for 120 points.

Sakurai-san and Haranishi-san were the supporters, but they seemed more interested in mugging for the camera.

Nino-kun thought it was funny, though, so I guess it was all right. But will he reach his goal of 120 points?

After that, they played bank bowling. I didn’t expect to see this, considering how hard it is for the kids to handle a bowling ball, but Koko-chan and Sea-chan didn’t do badly at all on the first frame for the kiddie team.

Kanon-chan and Seiran-chan were the clean-up pair. They needed special slides for the balls:

Then, for the Arashi team, it was the Fujiwara duo.

And Aiba-kun and Ohno-san tried to take down everything Fujiwara left behind.

The last game was Kicking Sniper. And finally, we got to see Gachapin in action. Fuku-kun got to use the “ladies zone” – I guess it’s the “kiddie zone” in this case.

The Arashi team had Fujiwara both kicking in the same slot, Ninomiya-kun, and Matsumoto-kun. Will they send the kids home in disappointment or face an embarrassing defeat?

Well, this episode was really all about the kids. To be sure, watching the little tykes in action will brighten up your day. Following a completely Arashi-centric VS Arashi episode last week, I think it was a good way to go.

The Most Omoshiroi (Interesting) Arashi was unquestionably Nino-kun, and purely for his choice of clothing. There was no way you could ignore it at any point in the episode.