It’s soon to be Sakura Miyawaki‘s birthday on March 19! While fans are busy congratulating the star on her hatch day, one particular fan base has fallen into hot soup with Koreans. Sakurasake, one of Sakura’s overseas’ fan groups, designed a subway station advertisement for her birthday.
The advertisement will be displayed from February 28 to March 31, 2022, at Samsung station in South Korea. As it’s a prominent station, many people are sure to stop and stare at the poster!
However, what rubbed South Koreans the wrong way was the use of the Rising Sun symbol in one of the backdrops of the advertisement. The advertisement is designed like a comic with 5 panels. While most of the panels were not a problem, the red and white rays in the bottom left panel posed an issue.
The Rising Sun symbol is known to be a highly sensitive topic for South Koreans. Back in 2016, Girls’ Generation‘s Tiffany was severely reprieved for the use of a Snapchat filter with the symbol in it.
The symbol is one that is sensitive to many Koreans as it is a symbol that reminds them of the days of the Japanese Occupation. As a wartime symbol, it should not be used lightly. What made it worse was Sakura’s Japanese roots.
Koreans expressed their anger towards the fanbase for their poster design.
- “Are they crazy? Why are they acting up and putting such things up with a Japanese person?”
- “Are they nuts? What’s this?”
- “I knew this would happen the moment she debuted in Korea. Ugh”
- “A collaboration between Chinese and a right-wing”
- “A mess on the Korean Independence Movement day”
- “They’re crazy. Just go to Japan.”
- “Why are they acting up on the Korean Independence Movement day? The company that okayed this is also in the wrong.”
The timing of the advertisement made the situation worse as it clashed with the Korean Independence Movement day on March 1. The day was when many Koreans fought against the Japanese rule over South Korea.
The fanbase has yet to speak up on the matter.