Gee the End of Cute Trend?

•July 15, 2009 • 1 Comment

So Nyo Shi Dae – Kissing You

So Nyo Shi Dae – Gee

Kara – Honey

With the rise to popularity of Wonder Girls, So Nyo Shi Dae and Kara at the end of 2007, we saw a surge of cute trends from Kissing You to Nobody to Pretty Girl. Some may argue that Wonder Girls weren’t really carrying the “cute” trend, but Nobody outfits had it’s own cute appeal. It seemed that kpop fashion designers were only able to come out with outfits to make their stars look like twelve and thirteen year olds rather than young adults. At the beginning of the year, So Nyo Shi Dae’s record breaking song Gee continued the cute trend but with a bit more a mature spin to the outifts. However, with the debut of 2NE1, After School, and most recently 4Minute, there had been a drastic trend to vibrant neon colors, tights, crazy hair and sunglasses. Will this be the new trend for the next years to come, or will it be too much for fans to handle in the long-term?

2NE1 – Fire

4Minute – Hot Issue

After School – Diva

Innocentsteps is Back!

•July 15, 2009 • Leave a Comment

I know that I’ve been a hiatus for a couple months, but summer is already half way through and even though I’m still busy preparing for college, I’ll try to update as much as possible. Thanks for your patience!

Big Bang Female Version Released

•April 8, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Yes, I know this is late new, but just bare with me here. YG Entertainment has finally released 2NE1, their new girl group known infamously as the spin off of Big Bang. It seems that it’s the trend now, with So Nyo Shi Dae being the spin off of Super Junior. But nonetheless, I think they deserve a fair chance. Their recent CF with Big Bang was a huge hit especially with the dijital release of their song Lollipop. But keep a  look out for their new girl group that might make our three rival groups turn into a four way square of hate (or love, if you prefer/believe in the everyone-is-friends theory).

HB 2009 Sends Fans into Chaos

•April 8, 2009 • Leave a Comment

WARNING: this is probably not the most interesting post I have ever written, more like a financial view on kpop, but I mean where are you not going to here are money in this economy?

The Korean Times Music Festival Hollywood Bowl is considered the biggest korean concert held here in America and attracts fans from Los Angeles to New York to Toronto as it is one of the few concerts that allow North American fans to catch a glimpse of their idol stars that are usually thousands of miles away. In the past, HB has welcomed reknowned idol groups such as Big Bang, So Nyo Shi Dae, SS501, Epik High, Baek Ji Young, Dong Bang Shin Ki, etc. and although it is meant to aim for a a wider audience, it is infamous a the concert of all concerts for teenagers and college kids. With last year’s list inviting So Nyo Shi Dae, Dong Bang Shin Ki, Super Junior and more, one would think that this year’s would be just as solid, no? But what seemed to be a United States recession has now become a global recession, becoming more apparent to fans around the world.

Speculation

For some, HB is the place to see all the idol stars, but with the growing economy up until recent months, HB started to turn into a money-making opportunity for speculators. In a nutshell: fans buy tickets at Korean Times in mass, up to 4-6 tickets, the day the tickets come out. Many times, these are the people that live close or can get their hands on the tickets the fastes. Now, let’s say the terrace tickets are selling for 150 dollars apiece and you ordered the ticket at the end of January or early February when none of the artists have been released. Now, most times, these sellers will post their tickets on blog or soompi at a price, say $175. Then the ticket may be bought by a hardcore Super Junior fans, who has missed the chance to get a good terrace seat and even thought the extra 25 dollars may seem to be a lot, but it is pretty reasonable. The speculation comes more into play as more artists are being released and the better the list is, the higher the prices go. Some pool seats, standard at 200 dollars a piece are sold for 450 dollars a piece at prime time. The whole ideal is to get the tickets at a reasonable price and just god damn hope that some good artists are coming.

What Happened to HB 2009?

It seems that Korea Times has released it’s final artist list Girls’ Generation (SNSD) | Lee Juk | Lena Park | Kim Changwan Band | Son Ho Young | SHINee |Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter | Kim Heung Gook | Tae Jina | Tenor Um Jung Haeng |Kim Tae Woo | Baek Ji Young|SS501 (all five members) | Min Hae Kyung.  Now, maybe i’m not so up-to-date with korean music, but it you were to show this list to me, I would only recognize about 5-6 of the artists, not even considering that I don’t really like all of the ones that I know. So for any teenager, this is a damn disappointing list, not saything that I wouldn’t want to listen to all the older artists, but it’s more of a monetary concern. Yah, I’d probably want to see Shinee, So Nyo Shi Dae, SS501, and Baek Ji Young, but is it worth 200+ dollars? It seems that KT was hoping that with the recent Kkotnam craze, that SS501 would be able to boost some sales. But reality is, tickets are selling like hotcakes, and for those folks who are dead set on going, I don’t advise you to buy the ticket just yet. On soompi (http://www.soompi.com/forums/index.php?&showtopic=274111&st=80) it may seem that some ticket prices are still high, but as the sellers are becoming more and more depsperate, prices will start to lower and get closer and closer to the original price. If you’re really a whimsical person, just wait a couple days beforehand and I can almost guarantee a good price. Many Super Junior, DBSK, and Big Bang fans are dropping out and their ticket are up for sale. So go out and get yourself some tickets!

Super Junior Finally Become Men

•March 14, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Super Junior has been gone for about a year anad a half now, just like So Nyo Shi Dae, but for those hard core fans that have been waiting all this time all I have to say is: damn, it was worth the wait. It seems that Super Junior has finally transformed from cutesy men, to punk, to finally men, performing with suits and clean haircuts rather than white streaked hair and dangling clothes. I mean, I loved U, but it seems that Super Jnior was the last to hop off the trend of the late 1990 and early 2000 when everyone else was moving towards a more “gentlemen” look. Can’t say the same thing about girl bands, but that’s for another day. But, see for yourself.

Super Junior – Sorry Sorry Performance (Music Bank 3.14.2009)

Has 2009 Already Been Pooped Out?

•March 13, 2009 • Leave a Comment

The year 2009 started off with a bang in the drama industry, producing hit dramas such as East of Eden, Boys Over Flowers, My Precious Child and a few others. But it seems that after late march and mid-May, there won’t be much left except for our trilogy of saeguk dramas. With East of Eden finsihed last Tuesday, My Precious Child finishing in the next two weeks and Boys Over Flowers finishing by the end of March, is there anything worth watching? Looking at what’s planned for the slots, it looks like a pretty mellow year except for maybe Triple with a strong cast, and again, our three saeguk dramas. The Road Home, the successor of You Are My Destiny, has been pummeled by competition at the beginning of the year, barely staying afloat with mid 18% ratings. Cinderella Man is iffy, with it’s pre-destined melodramatic storyline and some not so strong acting. MBC’s daily drama, I Love You Don’t Cry has also suffered from the fierce competition this year. Cain and Abel started out strong with mid-teen ratings and hopefully will be able to branch out and reach its full potential by the beginning of April. Life is Beautiful on SBS seems promising with Han Hyo Joo, Lee Seung Ki, and Moon Chae Won in the cast listing, but again, nothing is certain. But, reality is folks, whatever you’ve seen in the last three months, is about as good as it’s gonna get…

OH, and for those of you ardent Boys Over Flowers fans, read your most reliable spoilers and never before seen pics here at http://kpculture.wordpress.com/. Have fun!

Waiting for New Generation Boy Band?

•March 13, 2009 • 1 Comment

It’s interesting how the entertainment industry just keeps circling around itself. Today, the big girl groups are So Nyo Shi Dae, Kara, and Wonder Girls, each from a rivaling entertainmet groups. From the male side, we’ve got Big Bang and Shinee really kicking into the in industry 2007 and last year. But, haven’t we seen this phase a decade ago? S.E.S, FinKL and Baby V.O.X. were popular rivaling girl groups trying to hit the top fo the music charts at the beginning of the kpop music industry. We got Shinhwa and H.O.T. controlled the fashion trends and the idols of korean teenagers around the world. Now all have disbanded (tells you a lot about the length of a typical music career) except Shinhwa which is fading out of the picture as its members have either gone to the military, started solo activities, or the popular route: starting your own entertainment industry. But what’s that got to do with today? Shall we compare…

                                         Baby V.O.X.                                                                                         So Nyo Shi Dae

          vs.     

                                          

  Wonder Girls                                                                                                                         S.E.S

     vs.    

                             

                                        FinKL                                                                                                   KARA

   vs.  

                         Dong Bang Shin Ki                                                                                             Shinhwa

     vs.

        

                                 Big Bang                                                                                                                     Shinee

   vs.                   

SO, it’s not an exact comparison, but… you get the drift. We see this new generation of girl bands taking over those disbanded around 2003 or earlier (with a lot of failures in between) but who is going to be the big boy band to complete our circle? Many have said that DBSK was the new Shinhwa, but as Shinee came about, Shinee became the new DBSK? The latter one seems a bit idealistic but for DBSK to reach the 10 year consistency that Shinhwa has kept will be a challenge. But who will it be? 2PM recently debuted from JYP or is someone else?