PT’s Yearly Birthday (Day) Thread About Someone Else’s Birthday (7/21)

Good morning, everyone. Today is my birthday. I am still on the wrong side of 30 approaching 40. I’m not sure how I feel about that.

I took this day thread weeks beforehand, hoping I would have something super clever to write about. It turns out I really don’t!

So instead, let’s just discuss the adorable failure that was my userpic’s attempt at celebrating his 40th birthday, back on Feb. 24-25, 2012.

To start, Japanese comedian Shinya Arino had challenged and failed to complete the Super Nintendo launch classic Pilotwings on a normal episode of Game Center CX.

Game Center CX 098 - Pilotwings.avi-00.56.38.095-#1

Challenges that end in failures are often not one and done on GCCX, especially if it’s a notable game and/or the episode itself was deemed popular by the audience or the show’s staff.

Most of these “revenge” challenges are presented as DVD bonus features on the many, many, MANY DVDs of the series for which Japanese fans can buy or rent. But the important ones are often featured on special, oftentimes live episodes. There was the infamous 24-hour Lemmings marathon. There was also the live The Quest for Ki special, in which viewers got to see Arino fail at the same level for hours.

So why not have another live challenge like those, right as the Kacho himself was celebrating his 40th birthday? So Pilotwings it was!

Game Center CX - LE5 - Pilotwings (Arino's 40th Birthday Live Compilation).avi-00.02.22.176-#1

Arino, like his typical self, struggled mightily with the “expert” stages of Pilotwings. I recall, back at the time this was streaming live, just watching a solid hour or three of him crashing the light plane over and over again and repeating the stage he was on. (Frankly, these visuals transcend language!)

But enough about the challenge, how about seeing some of the 40 (!) birthday presents offered by staff members and other people related to the show in some capacity?

There was this video from Kirby creator and Smash overlord, Masahiro Sakurai!

Game Center CX - LE5 - Pilotwings (Arino's 40th Birthday Live Compilation).avi-00.11.08.836-#1
Yes, Sakurai in 2012 looks younger than Sakurai in 2020. Attempting to please the Smash fanbase does things to you, man!

 

There was also a deeply botched countdown of the final minute before Arino turned 40!

(There’s much, much more, but perhaps I’ll post them later in the thread so I don’t make this topic header way, way too long.)

Alas, Arino fell just short of finishing the game after failing repeatedly on the final rescue mission. And so the live challenge was a failure.

Game Center CX - LE5 - Pilotwings (Arino's 40th Birthday Live Compilation).avi-00.34.58.599-#1
Shinya Arino, farthest right, with his assistant directors, during the final moments of the special when the challenge was deemed a failure. Eventually, you have to end a live special no matter the result.

However, he would eventually finish that final mission in front of a live crowd in Iwata.

So all in all, what will happen when I reach 40? Something certainly better than 2020, I hope. It’s been a challenging year for all of us, and I would like to thank everyone here for making my life even a little easier this year. We’re halfway there!

So with that, enjoy the day thread!