|Net Worth||$ 1,800,000|
|Source of Wealth||Participation in a reality show|
|Date of Birth||Aug 3, 1976|
|Height||178 cm / 5 ft 10 inch|
Tomoaki Hamatsu  , also known as Nasubi, which means ‘Eggplant’ in Japanese, is a comedian from Fukushima, Fukushima Prefecture, Japan.
He participated in the Susunu! Denpa Shōnen, a Japanese reality show  , aired on Nippon Television from January 1998 until March 2002. Nasabi got into the reality show after he won a lottery for “a job in show business”.
Nasubi’s net worth is estimated at $1.8 million in 2022.
Tomoaki was an aspiring Japanese comedian who became famous after participating in the extreme and infamous Japanese reality show. Nasubi was challenged to stay alone in a small apartment without clothes, food, or communication with the outside world.
The only products and sustenance he could use were those he won from the mail-in sweepstakes, except for the water, heat, and electricity available in the apartment. He was also provided with stacks of magazines with sweepstakes and postcards to be able to mail the sweepstakes.
The goal was to collect sweepstakes and mail them in until he won items with a total value of ¥1 million (around $10,000). When he entered the reality show, Nasubi thought he was being recorded, and the footage would be edited before releasing it on TV.
However, his daily life was live-streamed on the Japanese national TV each Sunday night. The reality show broke viewership records and ended up being the most-watched TV show in Japan, gathering 17 million viewers each time it was broadcasted (which is twice as much as HBO’s hit Game of Thrones).
Tomoaki’s nickname Nasubi (‘eggplant’) comes from the eggplant emoji producers used to cover up his private parts. It’s also a mocking reference to his long face shaped like an eggplant.
The show’s mocking remarks didn’t end there. Producers also added silly sounds and effects accompanying his actions while he was being broadcasted.
In the beginning, Tomoaki was only given a little bread and water by the TV show staff, but they stopped doing that when the results started coming in. He was left forging for food, clothes, and everything else with the help of the sweepstakes.
He won some sugary drinks and a bag of rice, which he couldn't cook because he hadn’t won any pots or containers to cook it. So he had to eat the rice raw until he made a makeshift container from an empty drink container and put it on the gas burner to cook it. The main source of food was canned and kibble dog food he won with the sweepstakes after he ran out of rice.
Among the other stuff Nasubi won were stuffed toys with which he communicated, movie tickets, a bicycle, which he made into a stationary bike, a TV set, a PlayStation game, and a VCR. He never won any clothes, so he remained named until the end of the show, except for a pair of lady underwear, which was too small for him.
Nasubi reached the goal after 335 days and after winning car tires in the amount of around ¥84000 ($576). As a reward for his completion, he was blindfolded and taken to an amusement park in South Korea where he could enjoy a day of Korean food and rides.
After that, when he expected he could go home, Tomoaki Hamatsu was again blindfolded and taken to an apartment where he had to repeat the process of mailing in sweepstakes to win the amount for his flight back to Japan. He completed this goal in a period of several weeks, and producers kept changing the goal, increasing the ticket price to a business and then a first-class ticket.
When Nasubi reached the last goal, he was again blindfolded and taken to a new location. Believing he was made to do another challenge, he began undressing. But at that moment, the walls of the room collapsed, and he found himself in a live TV studio in front of an audience.
Nasubi spent 15 months in total participating in the reality show. Anyone can imagine the psychological and mental consequences a person would suffer as a result of being deprived of clothes, food, and communication with the outside world while suffering horrible and inhuman-like humiliation in front of millions of people.
Nasubi’s shock was reinforced even more when he realized that his daily life and private moments were broadcast live to the Japanese.
He suffered mental and emotional trauma due to the horrifying and cruel reality show conditions. The audience watched him cry, scream and deteriorate over time. Tomoaki spent his days writing hundreds of postcards to be sent with the sweepstakes to publications, which was taking a toll on him mentally rather than physically, he stated in an interview with Style Koriyama  .
When he got out of the show, his speech was slow, and he had difficulties having conversations because he was isolated from the outside world for a long time.
He also lost a lot of weight and became malnourished. Nasubi also said he was feeling hot and sweating when wearing clothes six months after the show.
The Japanese government eventually canceled the Susunu! Denpa Shōnen show because of the tortuous and cruel concept and treatment towards participants. Nasubi’s story also brings into question the schadenfreude-like reality TV shows, which involve the audience amusing themselves and taking pleasure in watching someone suffer.
During his participation, Nasubi kept a journal describing his experience. The journal became a best-seller in Japan.
You can listen to Nasubi’s interview with Stephanie Foo  , where he describes his experience in the reality show.
📺 You might also like to check out the story of Tabatha Robinson, aka Dream Doll.
After his reality TV show ordeal, Tomoaki didn’t manage to get a breakthrough in his comedy career. As Stephanie Foo describes in her interview with Nasubi, he was only offered roles in which he was required to be naked or goofy.
However, he starred in many Japanese movies and TV shows  . He also became a dramatic stage actor and formed the stage troupe Eggplant Way, with which he toured across Japan.
Some of the movies Tomoaki Hamatsu starred in are “Kamen Rider”, “Running: Banished”, and “An Adolescent”. He also appeared in several TV shows “Train Man: Densha Otoko”, “Memories of Matsuko” (Kiraware Matsuko no Issho), “Tokyo Ghost Trip” and “My Boys - More Than Family But Less Than Lovers” (Atashinchi no Danshi).
Tomoaki climbed Mount Everest in 2016 after two unsuccessful attempts in 2014 and 2015.
Currently, Tomoaki Hamatsu is the Fukushima Environment and Future Ambassador, Ambassador of Attaka Fukushima Tourism Exchange of Fukushima Prefecture, Mountain Day Ambassador, and the Special Instructor of Urabandai School of Furano Shizen Juku.
Nasubi, or Tomoaki Hamatsu, is a Japanese comedian who participated in the extreme reality show Susunu! Denpa Shōnen aired on Nippon Television from January 1998 until March 2002.
Nasubi’s net worth is estimated at 1.8 million.
Nasubi. (2022, October 18). Retrieved November 2, 2022, from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nasubi
Susunu! Denpa Shōnen. (2022, October 04). Retrieved November 2, 2022, from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Susunu!_Denpa_Sh%C5%8Dnen
Joiner, L. (2022, October 31). Nasubi, and the true story of a reality show that destroyed someone's life. Retrieved November 2, 2022, from https://movieweb.com/japanese-reality-show-nasubi/
Style. (2020, June 10). Interview via online: Fukushima's famous actor and entertainer, Nasubi active in various fields. Retrieved November 2, 2022, from https://stylekoriyama.com/fukushima-information/2020/06/10/interview/
I am the eggplant. (2018, February 16). Retrieved November 2, 2022, from https://www.thisamericanlife.org/529/human-spectacle/act-one
Profile. (n.d.). Retrieved November 2, 2022, from https://nf-l.net/profile.html
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