The Japanese comedy duo Nosei-mahi Burazazu – literally, “cerebral palsy brothers” – is made up of comedians DAIGO and Norio Shusa, both who have cerebral palsy but have created their own niche in Japanese comedy by making fun of their own disability. Audiences apparently take to them rather easily as they laugh out loud with the duo’s play on public perceptions regarding people with disabilities.
DAIGO and Norio Shusa already knew each other from when they were in school, in Niigata Prefecture, but they were reunited around 10 years ago at an event that highlighted performances by people with disabilities. DAIGO was already in love with comedy at that point, and he convinced Shusa to join in and form a comedy duo with him. Shusa accepted the invitation and they started performing together in their hometown. The duo’s popularity increased dramatically when they won a comedy contest for people with disabilities in 2010, which was broadcasted over NHK.
Recently, the duo finally debuted as actors on the big screen, appearing in the movie Dakishimetai: Shinjitsu no Monogatari (“I want to hug you: A true story”). In the movie, they play the friends of the heroine, played by actress Keiko Kitagawa. The duo’s classic skits are also featured in the movie. Admittedly, there are some people who criticize their act, saying that their brand of “impaired comedy” is unpleasant or “hard to laugh at.” The duo just shrugs at these comments, saying that “an impairment is just one part of an individual.” They are convinced that their jokes get their audiences to laugh because of the punch lines, and not out of pity or sympathy. Up until now, their dream is still to help people with disabilities by removing the barriers around them, even with laughs and smiles.