One of the things we do enjoy about Japan is the television. First of all, they are incredibly accurate when it comes to predicting the weather. If the weather report says that it will rain at 3 PM, bring your umbrella.
One of the coolest game shows was a Ninja Warrior Challenge that was incredible to watch. Check it out on Youtube here.
There's also a trend toward funny game shows, that usually involve the contestants engaging in feats of strength or agility. One show, Takeshi's Castle, has been redubbed into English and is shown on Spike TV as Most Extreme Elimination Challenge, or MXC. The contestants are divided into teams and compete against one another in a variety of hilariously funny and painful events, such as seen on the below Youtube clip.
There are other game shows I've seen, that require contestants to answer questions or see their grandson bunji catapulted over an abyss, one where contestants have to get through a tounge twister or get swatted in a particularly sensitive part of their anatomy, and others which test contestants ability to sit in 50 degree Celsius water for time they later use to pitch a product. Much fun is had at other people's expense, it seems.
Candid camera type shows are also popular, such as one that has 100 people ambush one unsuspecting businessman. Such as below...
Not all of Japanese TV is silly game shows, but the best parts seem to be. To see what you're missing, check out some of these links...and be sure to go to Youtube and search for others.
The Japanese are Crazy
Psycho Japanese TV