My Viral Fight Video in Bangkok – Follow up
This is the story of how I filmed the fight in Bangkok video. Here is a bonus video (only on bangkok112.com) with 3 extra minutes of footage:
The original video is the 3rd most viewed video currently on the ‘Bangkok 112’ Youtube channel with 91,000 views, it also has a 64% watch time for all those views.
On 25th February 2015 I was rushing to Hanrahans Irish Pub (Soi Nana) to get a pint of carlsberg before the happy hour closed at 8pm. I was at my BTS station in Phrakhanong and stopped to take a short video of the traffic. When I got to the escalator there were 2 Thai people blocking me from walking up, I usually say ‘excuse me’ but I didn’t this day and these 2 slight delays caused me to miss my train and catch the next one 5 minutes later (was this fate?). I would have never caught the action if I had caught the earlier train.
When I arrived at the At Nana BTS station I took my exit and was powerwalking zombie commuter style to get to my happy hour. If I could make it fast enough then maybe I could squeeze 2 pints in. As I was approaching the steps I heard some shouting. Now, there is normal everyday shouting and there is this kind of shouting. I instantly knew something was going on. I heard a man’s voice echoing all around the Nana BTS station and sure enough, there was a couple having a full on domestic argument on the other side of the platform. A big western guy was going nuts about something and I couldn’t really make out what was being said, but I thought he might get the kicking of his life from the locals if he carried on so I started to record the scene.
The guy seemed to be getting more and more incensed, and sure enough the domestic fisticuffs started shortly after. Now, a caveat is I also need to say first that the reason I recorded the whole scene from afar was solely because a couple of days before I was nearly set upon by a violent Thai guy after I openly filmed him bashing up his missus. I was too close to the scene and I held my camera like 99% people do in that cliched pose. Well sure enough the guy instantly spotted me and sort of charged at me, hurling abuse my in my direction.
It made me think about people’s thought process in an incident like this. After a fight, or similar chaotic incident, people usually scan round to see if anyone has their camera phones out recording. It’s normal in Thailand for people to pop out their smartphones at the scene of fights and traffic accidents.
I have done the same, and last year (2014) I filmed half dead motionless guy who had crashed his scooter head on at about 50mph. I will never publish that footage due to the fact that I think he probably died in the ambulance on the way to hospital. Even the Thai people who were rubbernecking (as I was) all left instantly as it was clear the guy was on deaths door.
So I don’t personally want to influence the scene in the fight video in any way, unless it got really nasty.
I actually didn’t originally see the part where he started dishing out the head-butts and choking because of the light being so low I couldn’t see through the viewfinder, but I could see the tall thin guy was right next to them (the one who shouted ‘YOU HAVE NO RIGHT’) so didn’t think there was any critical danger to the girl.
I’m not condoning domestic violence against Women, but if you step in you are highly likely to be on the receiving end for free by both parties. The girl in the video didn’t complain to any passers by, and also she wasn’t shy about being struck in front of the general public which is an indicator that this is probably a regular occurrence with this couple.
Here is the original video:
The extra part that is not shown in the original video is where they ran into 2 traffic cops on Soi 7. You can see the guy was incessantly shouting ‘WHY WHY WHY’ over again. From talking with other Westerners at the scene, it appeared his wife ripped him off from his money. You can hear the girl say ‘No, I don’t want like this’ on the bonus video, and the guy said ‘What about the car, what about the kids?’ or something to that effect.
The above pic shows the spike in views from Youtube Analytics in May 2015. The original video was shared with some popular forums in Thailand at this point, including thaivisa.com and pattaya-addicts.com.
I do have a story from a couple of years ago when I did step in to break up a fight between a western guy and his Thai girlfriend. It was at a street bar near Soi 11 around 4am. A Western guy was arguing with his Thai girlfriend and eventually started slapping her around a little bit right there at the bar.
So I stepped in to break it up, as I did all the bar staff rushed to me to stop me from confronting the guy and getting involved. The couple were regular customers, and the staff said it was ok, she does this all the time (cheated on him) and it was normal for them to have fisticuffs at the bar.
The thing is if it came to a fight (the guy was wild with anger) I would probably have been fighting both the western guy and his Thai girlfriend. As he was of a similar size and build to me, there would have probably been no winner to the brawl, only someone who got away with the least amount of injuries. Plus, maybe there is the off chance that he carried some sort of weapon? I could have ended up in hospital with a knife wound for what? Acting on my moral judgement in a country 5873 miles away from my homeland?
In Thailand violence is desensitised, it’s nothing like the West. It’s a totally different culture where children are exposed to it from an early age. Prime time Thai soap operas regularly show men hitting women, women hitting women, and also rape and incest stories are ran without outcry. Cinema age ratings for violent films are virtually non-existent. If I flick through my terrestrial Thai TV channels I can quickly find horribly overdubbed films with gratuitous violence, and even sex scenes at anytime of the day! It’s unbelievable the lack of TV censorship here, I sometimes doubt if there is even a watershed.
So, to step in on not? That was the question. As I said, if for example the girl in the original video was on the floor helplessly being kicked, or really bashed around bloodily then I would have put the camera down and been forced to step in. I did follow to Soi 7 after the chase part where 2 traffic police diffused the situation at the time. So then I hung around for 5 more minutes then left for my happy hour beers.
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