Things don’t seem to be going well for Nam Joo-hyuk, now that pictures of him drinking with his friends while still a minor have taken the internet by storm and become a hot topic of discussion in several online communities.
The image, a low-resolution screen shot of a computer, shows what appears to be a young Nam Joo-hyuk sitting at a table, with bottles of soju in front of him, sparking speculation about drinking.
The screenshot suggests that the photo was posted online in September 2011 on the once popular blogging platform ‘Cyworld’.
What’s in the old photo of Nam Joo-hyuk?
There are four people in the photo. The only one of the four people in the image whose face is clearly distinguishable is a person standing second from the left.
It is speculated that the person in the photo is actor Nam Joo-hyuk. The 28-year-old actor, born in 1994, would have been seventeen in 2011, so it is forbidden by law to consume alcohol.
The image also shows some green colored bottles placed on the table in front of the boys. These bottles are believed to contain soju, a popular form of Korean alcohol. The photo posted to ‘Cyworld’ had a short caption that read ‘A photo of Joo Hyuk’.
When asked to comment on the matter, Joo-hyuk’s agency, Management SOOP, said:
“We are currently in the process of addressing allegations of bullying at school, so we are unable to make a statement on this matter.”
Nam Joo-hyuk has been the center of attention lately, but not for good reasons. The actor has had multiple allegations of bullying against him, leveled by anonymous complainers claiming to be from the same school as him.
This image of alleged underage drinking could turn the tide against the actor among fans already divided on the issue
Nam Joo-Hyuk accused of bullying by two alleged victims
Recently, an anonymous person came out and accused actor Nam Joo-hyuk of bullying he in high school. The allegations came as a huge shock to ardent fans of the popular star.
However, the matter was quickly brought under control and fans were reassured of the actor’s innocence by his agency, Management SOOP, which released an official statement and strenuously denied all allegations. The agency also proceeded to submit a criminal complaint for libel against the prosecution.
One week after the first accusation, a second person came out claiming to be a victim of Nam Joo-Hyuk’s bullying at school. The second complainant, who also did not disclose his identity, provided intricate details about the bullying incidents, making it more difficult for fans to identify loopholes.
However, SOOP management adamantly maintained its position and said that even after a detailed investigation, they found no evidence of the said bullying by Nam Joo-Hyuk.
The new complaint divided fans of the actor, many of whom are questioning the veracity of his agency’s statement. While most fans still stand behind and defend the actor, a significant number are now doubting his innocence.
How do the new allegations affect the image of the K-drama star?
The surfacing of the alleged drinking photo of minors has only made matters worse, as it can be argued that witch sitters who had been neutral about it until now are now leaning more on the side of the alleged victims.
According to Allkpop, a netizen commented on the matter by saying:
“Judging from that photo, it doesn’t really look like he was a ‘quiet, reserved student who was only interested in basketball,’ as his agency said.”
Some people analyzed the photo, taking into account the culture of children who tried alcohol while still in school. They stated that while it’s not uncommon to try alcohol while underage, the online bragging is done by students who think they can get away with it.
If left unchecked, these allegations of underage drinking could damage the reputation of the popular public Twenty Five Twenty One star.