LIGHTHOUSE review: Mostly caters to a specific audience

LIGHTHOUSE is a Japanese talk show featuring two leading celebrities, Gen Hoshino and Masayasu Wakabayashi, who discuss their work, anxieties, plans for the future, and more. The show is now streaming on Netflix.


Two leading Japanese entertainers meet once a month to talk about their struggles. One of them is Gen Hoshino, a singer-songwriter, actor, and writer. The other entertainer is Masayasu Wakabayashi, a comedian, actor, and television presenter.

Their first meeting takes place in October 2022, in the Koenji-Asagaya area. As the two of them spent a lot of time in this area when they were young and struggling, they talk about their good and bad memories of those days. 

Their next meeting takes them to a penthouse from where they get a view of Tokyo in all its glory. The third episode sees them meeting on Christmas and talking about their childhood memories of the holiday, among other things.

The fourth episode makes their chat more public, as it takes place in front of a live audience. While they go on a long drive together in the fifth episode, the last episode takes them to the Miura Coast as well as a lighthouse, where they say goodbye to each other.

The audience gets to hear the two entertainers, who are asked to maintain a journal, talk about their careers, inspiration, changing interests, struggles in life, plans for the future, and more. Every episode ends with Gen Hoshino performing an original song.


It is an interesting idea to get two public figures to maintain journals and talk about their struggles as well as share their opinions on various things. It makes them more human and, in a way, breaks down the barrier that exists between celebrities and their fans.

There are some struggles that remain the same, irrespective of where people live or who they are. Whenever the two celebrities discuss such topics, the audience will be able to relate to them. They might not agree with them all the time, but that does not make the discussions any less authentic.

With time, the audience gets to know the two men better, and they get used to their personalities. The ones who did not know them before will become familiar with them and then be more interested in their conversations.

Gen Hoshino’s music is one of the best things about the show. He made six songs for the show, one for each episode, based on his conversations with Wakabayashi. The songs not only reveal the artist’s thoughts but also make the end of every episode satisfying.  


While it is good to hear about the lives of the two celebrities, not everyone will enjoy it as much as their fans and the people who are familiar with them. The audience comes to know the two of them during the show, but not everyone might want to stay for that long.

Additionally, there are a lot of references that only those familiar with Japanese culture and public figures will understand. For others, it can be hard to comprehend these references in the conversations. 

That could also be the reason why the audience does not feel the need to laugh at the things that the stars and crew find humorous. On many occasions, it feels like their laughter is unwarranted and that the show is trying too hard to turn everything into a joke.


The idea behind LIGHTHOUSE is quite interesting, but the show will appeal mostly to the audience who are familiar with the two entertainers, their work, and Japanese culture. 

LIGHTHOUSE review: Mostly caters to a specific audience 1

Director: Masataka Ueno

Date Created: 2023-08-21 15:50

Editor's Rating:

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