thai train dancers top

Anyone who has ridden the trains in Japan has probably had a very different experience from riding them in their home country. The trains I ride here in Boston are loud, not the cleanest, and full of people talking and listening to music as if there’s not a hundred others around them. In Japan though, that doesn’t fly. Everyone is motionless, remains quiet, and mostly respectful of others.

One group of Thai teenage actors found that out the hard way. They filmed themselves doing the unspeakable act of dancing while on a train in Japan, and quickly found themselves on the receiving end of some harsh punishment: six months of house arrest and banned for six months from all forms of social networking sites.

The group of Thai teenagers are all actors on the drama Hormones, an extremely popular college TV series. It seems that they originally came to Japan to shoot scenes for the show, and during their time off went skiing and sightseeing in Hokkaido, all the while uploading pictures of their travels online.

That was all fine and dandy until some of the girls in the group started uploading pictures of themselves “abusing” sakura trees. Instead of using the sakura merely as a backdrop, the girls got all up in the sakura’s grill, pulling down the branches and flowers to get better shots. Here’s one of the images that riled up Japanese netizens:

▼ Can you not hear the sakura screaming?

The sakura incident could mostly be forgiven though, until the teenagers decided to – *gasp* – do an impromptu dance while riding a train. We could try to describe it for you, but instead just watch the video of the whole thing here:

As the faces of everyone around the dancing teens probably signaled, the Japanese people were not happy about this behaviour.

After the video caused an uproar online, GTH, the company that produces the drama the kids all star in, released an official apology to not only Japan, but also the Thai people whose image was hurt by the teenagers’ actions.

And they didn’t stop there. The group member who actually filmed and uploaded the footage online was given a punishment of six months house arrest and six months banning from all social media. The three others were given three months each, respectively.

Just to add the cherry on top, the company who manages both GTH and the actors also released a statement saying that they will be producing a video to instruct Thai people who will be traveling to Japan on how they are expected to behave overseas. So far none of the teenagers involved have said anything on the matter, most likely due to the fact that they’re all banned from using social media.

Talk about a thorough response! What do you think about it? Did some teenagers dancing on a train really deserve such a reaction? Or were their management companies correct in dishing out a harsh, quick response? Let us know in the comments!

Source: Thailand Hyperlinks (1, 2) via Hamusoku
Featured/top image: Twitter