The BEST Episodes of James May: Our Man in Japan
Every episode ever - ranked by fan votes!
Last Updated: May 14, 2021
James May embarks on a remarkable journey across Japan, from its icy north to its balmy south. He’ll see the sights, meet the locals, and eat the noodles in a bid to truly understand the Land of the Rising Sun.
#1 - Deodorant
Season 1 - Episode 3 - Aired Jan 3, 2020
The cherry blossoms are out, and James hits the streets of Tokyo with his new guide Yujiro. As James discovers, this unique city is home to some of Japan’s greatest eccentrics and ideas. From obsessive trainspotters, musicians and baffling hi-tech gadgetry to cat superfans, penis festivals and mind-blowing computerised art shows, James tries to understand what makes Japan tick.
#2 - Hey Bim!
Season 1 - Episode 4 - Aired Jan 3, 2020
In his epic journey across Japan from north to south, James leaves bustling Tokyo to travel to the ancient capital of Kyoto. Along the way he indulges his passions for motorbikes, Japanese cars and culture by painting Mount Fuji, tackling the Suzuka F1 circuit and taking a music lesson from a Geisha. It’s then time for a taste of the future as a confused robot shows James around Kyoto.
#3 - Cabbage Roll
Season 1 - Episode 2 - Aired Jan 3, 2020
James arrives on the main island of Honshu, and the beautiful region of Tohoku. He seeks inspiration with a mountain expedition and naked plunge with a friendly wandering monk, battles giant robots, becomes a samurai, gets adopted by some local J-Pop sensations, before embarrassing himself and his hosts on the world’s most luxurious train.
#4 - Go!
Season 1 - Episode 1 - Aired Jan 3, 2020
James begins his epic journey across Japan on the icy northern island of Hokkaido, throwing himself head first into the physical demands of dog sledding, snowball fighting and the baffling struggle of ordering noodles from a Japanese vending machine. Despite all that, there’s still time for octopus fishing and learning the art of samurai sword making.
#5 - Pickled Plum
Season 1 - Episode 6 - Aired Jan 3, 2020
The final leg of James’s journey from north to south finds him in Shikoku and Kyushu – the largest of Japan’s Southern Islands and a stunning paradise of blue water and semi-tropical sandy beaches. Cycling, archery, noodle making, and motorbike manufacturing are all in store, plus James is preserved for eternity in a creepy scarecrow village.
#6 - Peach Boy
Season 1 - Episode 5 - Aired Jan 3, 2020
James arrives in Osaka, Japan’s vibrant good-time city, where Pachinko gambling halls, incredible street food, and stand-up comedy are all on the menu. Yujiro, his trusty guide, returns to introduce James to Sumo wrestling, after which James escapes on a bullet train to explore the mysteries of local hero Peach Boy. Then it’s on to Hiroshima and the beautiful Itsukushima Shrine.