In what was supposed to be an apology for the sexual harassment that happened backstage to guests (B1A4, INFINITE, Block B, SHINee‘s Jonghyun, Kim Min Suk) in a hazing ritual, the staff of ‘Saturday Night Live Korea‘ copped to using the “initiation” on guests since the start of the show, trying to pass it off as an attempt to giving a morale boost to the guests.
“Hello. This is the staff of ‘SNL Korea.’
We started the initiation to boost the morale of our hosts before their performances. It’s something we’ve been doing for every host since the first episode of the first season, and the tradition consists of a short introduction and speech from the hosts, a welcoming applause, and a group cheer. We started this initiation because we wanted our hosts to relax and be in top condition for the show.
Some members of our crew acted out of order recently, and their wrongful actions have caused displeasure to many people. We sincerely apologize for that. We do not believe that Lee Se Young was the only one at fault.
We believe that most of the blame lies on the staff of ‘SNL Korea’ as we did not address the issues that led to this disgraceful act beforehand, and we posted this video on a public platform like Facebook without properly understanding the problem. We will do our best to take this as an opportunity to reflect and make sure that something like this does not happen again. We will return as a program that lives up to your expectations.”
Note that what they’re trying to say is that the “initiation” they’ve done from the start of the show is only supposed to be a group cheer of sorts, and that it’s only “recently” that the cast/crew has been sexually harassing guests in a groping attack. However, considering that we know this goes back to at least March of 2016 when Block B hosted, their use of “recently” seems awful suspect, especially since they’ve refused to publicly acknowledge wrongdoing beyond B1A4’s appearance on the show. Forgive my skepticism of their narrative, and I’m just chalking their explanation up to the show trying to compartmentalize this mess as best as they can.
I mean, I hope they’re telling the truth and this has only gone on for 8-9 months (which is still ridiculous, but better than years and years), but they haven’t provided any reason to take their word at face value yet. Hopefully they at least mean the last part of the apology, but it sure seems like an awful lenient a punishment if all this stops there.