In one of the most homogenous countries in the world, Ike Nwala has become an unprecedented success. The Nigerian-American comedian has reached ultra-celebrity status in Japan. Here, VICE speaks to Nwala about his experiences, success, and living in a country with so little diversity. “It’s extremely difficult for anyone from the outside to make it in Japan, and it’s even harder in the entertainment industry,” the video explains. “Dexter Thomas went to Tokyo to meet one Nigerian-American comedian who’s now on Japanese TV every day.”
From the expectations for comedians to perform all entertainment roles in Japan to life as a black man in a country with almost no racial diversity, Nwala is honest and open about his experience. His insight gives a glimpse into Japanese culture most of us would never see. Hear him talk about his life — and how he’s hoping to help shape a new generation to be more familiar with diversity — in the video here:
Ike Nwala is a charismatic, multi-talented performer — and he’s also keenly aware of how his presence on Japanese TV can have a larger impact. While some comedians might shy away from children’s TV, he thinks bigger — and sees the change that it could make for the future.