All About Japan

Weird & Hilarious Ad Promotes Train Manners

Transportation Trains Video Deeper Japan Japanese Commercials

This commercial, produced by Nishi-Nippon Railroad Co., tells a story of two Japanese schoolgirls who face-off for one empty seat on a crowded train carriage. Deathly stares between the girls suddenly turns into an “air chair battle,” which then quickly escalates into a very strange dance battle—carried out to the tune of what sounds like someone beat-boxing. The sequence even has one of the girls pull of some pretty bizarre funny faces, for what reason we're still not sure.

So what was the moral of the story? Well, there are a couple of cutaways toward the end of the commercial of other commuters sitting with legs wide apart or with bags rested on the seat next to them or between their legs. And finally we see all these bad commuters tidy themselves up and shift along the seat to make room for the two girls to be able to comfortably sit down. So it turns out the moral of the story is make sure you don’t encroach on the space outside your own sitting zone.

A Nishi-Nippon Railroad Co. survey found that the most complained-about “bad manner” was the way in which some people sit. The company says they hope the advertisement will be an opportunity to change the way some people think about train etiquette.

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