Download: TiK ToK – 2PM feat. Yoon Eun Hye
And they’re not even in a Korean drama… yet. (Taecyeon – I’m looking at you, since you’re going to be in the upcoming Cinderella’s Sister)
To sum up, 2PM leader Jaebeom left the group quite suddenly back in September due to a scandal revolving around his Myspace comments, which were made when he was a trainee under JYPE. The comments – taken at face value – appeared to be bashing South Korea and commented on his difficulties in living in Korea. He returned to Seattle, but there were hopes and plans for his comeback. However, recently, on February 25 it was announced that he wasn’t going to return to 2PM.
That caused a furor among the 2PM fans, known as “Hottests.” (Side note: Honestly, what kind of fan club name is that? One day – I’d just like to find out all the backgrounds between the fan club names, from ‘Cassies’ to ‘Elves’ to ‘whatever-random-word-you-can-think-of’)
JYPE held a press conference with fan club members and with the remaining six members of 2PM. You can read parts of the entire conference here at allkpop.com. Based on the transcript, it doesn’t look like the conference had a very friendly vibe.
This subsequently led to backlash from the international K-pop fan community, which I think can be summarized here by a blogger from seoulbeats.com. Now, remember – this is only an opinion of one person, and she does not necessarily represent the views of everyone. This blogger notes that:
“Dissatisfaction has turned into spite. Fans have turned into anti-fans. Love and respect has turned into hate and contempt.
Pardon the pun, but now, we the spectators…we’re tired of waiting. We’re tired of waiting for you to grow up.”
Not to be outdone, a Korean fan responded to the backlash and said that the audio recording was highly exaggerated, as a lot of the things that the fans said were not even heard by the members themselves. They were heard through the recording perhaps because they were close to the mic, but that does not mean the members could hear them.
Now I’ve got this to say: (because my opinion is THAT MUCH more important – heh) um, who cares?
Well ok – I care. Why else would I be writing about it? – but only because I find this entire situation funny, overblown, and completely entertaining. It’s about as entertaining as reality TV, and I don’t really watch reality TV. Sorry if that insults the fans or whatnot, but that’s my truth.
Members come and go – After School keeps adding members, Jewelry and Baby V.O.X lost members and replaced them, even BoA disappears to Japan before she comes back to Korea (which is about time and frankly I can’t wait for her new Korean album). Ok – maybe BoA is a bad example, since she’s a solo singer but you know what I mean. It’s just a fact of life. The reason behind Jaebeom’s departure is another matter. Was he forced out of the group unfairly? Or did he consent to it?
I think it’s been stated that he consented to it. And just because the group announced it way after the decision was made does not mean that they were spreading lies intentionally. Jaebeom reportedly did not want it announced so soon, and I’m sure that a lot of bureaucratic steps needed to be taken before the official announcement. That’s my guess. And if the group all decided to get rid of him – then perhaps he wasn’t the best influence in the group. I would think that they wouldn’t force him out unfairly – getting a majority vote through a democratic process of voting is fair enough. It’s unfortunate – but not unfair.
Was Jaebeom’s mistake that damning and costly to his image and 2PM’s image? Honestly, I think he should have been a little more responsible with posting those kinds of comments. It’s his fault really because in a world where even employers can check out the drunk photos of you posted on Facebook, it’s not that hard for someone to go on your Myspace and check out your comments. I can’t blame a guy for perhaps being lonely in a foreign country, but I have the sense that Koreans have a lot of pride. They are not going to take any bashing from anyone that easily, and considering that Jaebeom is a Korean-American, they probably see it as him looking down on them, and therefore made this issue into a huge scandal. It’s hard to adjust – but when you’re that popular in a foreign country, I think you should take it upon yourself to be a little more responsible and adjust, because it’s not all about you. It’s about others too.
Now, as for how “rude” the fans were at the conference, I would just look at the exchange between the questioner and the 2PM members or the JYPE representative. There were moments when the JYPE representative was trying to answer, and some fan would interrupt and say, “Please get to the point.” Was that a muttered statement meant only for the recording mic? I think not – especially since the representative would respond to that comment and say, “I’m trying to answer right now.” Now, the representative may have been getting long-winded, and I hate long-winded speakers myself, but he was answering the question – so give him a chance! It’s frustrating to see when someone interrupts another just because they’re not getting the answer right away. I admit, I do it a lot too – but in this situation where you’re being given a press conference for your benefit, why not have a little patience?
Final question: is Jaebeom really all that?! I guess I jumped on the 2PM bandwagon a little too late.
sources: allkpop, seoulbeats