The proprietor of a London hair salon was visited by angry North Korean embassy officials after posting a shop window ad featuring Kim Jong Un’s cherubic face grinning over a message reading “Bad Hair Day?”
The M&M Hair Academy in London says it received a visit by two men from the nearby North Korean embassy after putting up the poster last week, which was meant to promote discount haircuts through the month of April. While the Supreme Leader of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea is famous for his distinctive militant Mo Howard-like coif, the North Korean officials were anything but amused.
According to Mo Nabbach, who owns the London salon:
“The day after it went up two Asian-looking guys wearing suits turned up. One was taking pictures and the other taking notes,” said Nabbach. “I said to my client at the time, ‘I think they are North Korean officials.’
“Then they came in. They asked: ‘Who put that picture up?’ I said I did.”
Nabbach said the disgruntled North Koreans then told him that the advertisement was disrespectful, and it must be taken down immediately.
“They said: ‘That is a country’s national leader.’ I explained to them we often used pictures of celebrities, Lady Diana, Victoria Beckham. I told them: ‘Listen, this is not North Korea. This is England.’
“They asked for my name and I told them they would have to get their solicitors for that.”
Nabbach said he asked the two of them to leave, and later reported the incident to London police. At no point throughout the confrontation did either man identify themselves as being from the North Korean embassy, Nabbach said.
But a London Metro police spokesman said: “I can confirm that the North Korean embassy have contacted us and that we are in liaison with them. Officers spoke to all parties. No offences have been disclosed.”
A spokesman at the North Korean embassy said: “Our embassy is not in a position to comment on that story.”
Nabbach’s son, Karim, 26, who designed the ad that caused all the ruckus, said “It was a very large, in-your-face poster, an ad campaign to bring clients in.”
The Supreme Leader’s style did not appeal to Karim’s clientele, he said, adding “I think if you watch The Only Way Is Essex about half of them have that haircut. But we have never had to perform that haircut on anyone.”
“Perhaps, if David Beckham wore it. But, I don’t really see it catching on to be honest.”
Prior to the incident, nobody at the London salon had any idea that they were neighbors with the North Korean embassy, which is located within walking distance in nearby Gunnersbury.