Kimono vs. suits vs. cops.

Every year in January, cities across Japan hold a Seijinshiki, or Coming of Age Ceremony, for residents of the community who have turned 20, the age of legal adulthood in Japan. Usually the mayor or some other dignitary makes a speech, but the main thing that Japan’s newly recognized adults look forward to is getting dressed up and taking pictures with their friends.

Men wear either a suit or formal kimono, both considered attire befitting a full-grown man. However, in recent years there’s been a growing (though still minority) trend of choosing extremely outlandish styles, often coordinating garish colors and outlandish accouterments with friends, leading to some truly spectacular group shots.

However, not everyone appreciates the aesthetic, and it’s not just because of a stereotypical Japanese preference for conformity. The attention-grabbing outfits incorporate many cues from Japanese “yankee,” or “delinquent” subculture. Critics see the glamorization of teenage rebelliousness as a gateway to adult mayhem, as yankees often grow up to become full-fledged gang or yakuza members, and some worry that wearing yankee-inspired fashion for one’s Coming of Age Ceremony isn’t so much a last burst of silly youthful fun as it is an early declaration of a lawless lifestyle from there on out, with the video below a manifestation of their fears.

Shot and shared by Twitter user @_araisa_ in Yokohama, Japan’s second-largest city, the video opens with the police pulling over a pair of vans with yankee kimono-clad men hanging out of the windows holding banners of some sort. But as the camera pans down the road, we see the cars couldn’t have kept going forward anyway, because a brawl has broken out in the middle of the street.

With so many people throwing so many punches, at first it’s a little hard to make out who’s fighting who, but there seem to be two groups of 20-year-olds going at it. One group is made up of kimono-wearers, and trading blows with them is a group of men in gray or black suits. Aside from hitting each other with fists and throwing each other to the asphalt, many of the combatants can be seen swinging flagpoles at each other’s heads, and at some point a bottle hatters, spreading a white, possibly foamy substance onto the ground.

▼ 20 is also the legal drinking age in Japan.

Then a third group enters the fray: police officer clad in dark blue jacketed uniforms. When their repeated commands to break it up go unheeded, the officers start wading into the combat zone and dragging individuals out, although when one officer puts a suit-wearer in a full nelson at the video’s 35-second mark, a kimono bro takes advantage of his enemy’s inability to use his arms by socking him in the face before the police officer can pull him out of harm’s way.

“I’m glad I wasn’t down at street level,” tweets @ _araisa_, who filmed the fight from a pedestrian overpass, and commenters were quick to express their anger, worry, and embarrassment at the scene.

“It’s like they’ve learned nothing at all in 20 whole years about how to act.”
“Guessing the broken bottle had beer or some other kind of carbonated booze in it.”
“That red i-phone [that gets stepped on at 0:23] is totally busted.”
“I feel sorry for their parents, seeing their kids do this at their-coming-of-age ceremony.”
“Their parents are probably the same way, and that’s why the kids turned out like that.”
“Congratulations on turning 20! Thanks to the absolute lack of common sense you acquired as children, you’re now worthless adults.”
“Is this a new Smash Brothers game?”

More than a few commenters also chimed in to poke fun at the group of would-be street kings rolling in a budget-priced kei car, sometimes seen as a mark of financial failure in Japan, but really, that’s the least of what they should be embarrassed about.

Source: Twitter/@_araisa_ via Otakomu
Featured image: Twitter/@_araisa_
Insert images: SoraNews24, Twitter/@_araisa_