Domestic news outlets and social media users love a good scare. Ever since a horde of rowdy Saitama-types turned Shibuya into something akin to “The Purge” last year, many Tokyoites have viewed this year’s Halloween festivities with trepidation.
Reports over the past few weeks in the runup to Oct. 31 took on a downright apocalyptic tone, with TV news programs screening segments on how local businesses were bracing themselves for the throng of visitors they expected in late October, with plenty of shots from last year’s Halloween havoc spliced in for good measure. This was probably expected from traditional media organizations, but online spaces were just as interested in the event. Even social media users — who have long been suspicious of domestic media establishment reports — expressed anger at the event, bemoaning the fact that their tax contributions would be used to police public behavior in Shibuya. The only individual or group reveling in Halloween’s impending arrival was whoever runs the Shibuya Meltdown account on Twitter.