ALIVE

April 11, 2014 § Leave a comment

Yes we are.

And we love you all (and K-pop)

The Future is Idol

I don’t need a man

October 12, 2012 § Leave a comment

I’m always alarmed and worried when the meaning in words and actions are changed from politics to the conceptual level. This is what Miss A is heading towards using a banner with the words Independent Women and This Is For All The Independent Ladies, for their new promotional pictures. To make money out of a short promotional period on the very much so important issue of womens rights is indeed higly questionable. This is obviously so much of a marketing strategy that no one can be misstaken, but who knows, Miss A might turn out to be part of a newly born feminist movement in South Korea in the end…

Good idea or bad idea to use this concept? Does it make it better or worse that they look awesome in suits and other traditional “male” attires in the teaser MV?
The Future is Idol – L

GLAM – Party(XXO)

August 1, 2012 § Leave a comment

It’s Stockholm Pride Week, the first one I’m actually trying to participate in for real. And this awesomely sexually ambivalent song is my soundtrack:

(subtitled version here)

I can’t really decide on whether I think it’s actually supposed to be about same-sex attraction or if it just comes across like that when it’s translated, though I with my limited Korean also make out the original Korean lyrics to be quite gay. Or is it just my corrupt mind? I personally believe that there are supposed to be hints at lesbianism in the lyrics, and that they are put there mostly as a promotional stunt, something to make the song a hot topic. One part of me finds it annoying when love between girls is hinted at for commercial purposes, considering the male gaze, lesbian love for straight men etc, but another part of me remembers how many young girls who found the fabricated love between the girls of Tatu to be a great inspiration in their teenage coming out process.

No matter what, the song is really catchy, and I’ll interpret the lyrics to my benefit. You know how it is with art – it’s the viewer’s perception that’s important.

/Mis

My Funny Hunny

December 24, 2011 § Leave a comment

Yesterday we had an editorial meeting, eating lunch and discussing the future for our blog with it’s upcoming one year celebration and with us trying to find focus as being hardworking students and teachers. The result? Well, at this moment nothing special, but we are awesome and happy about our friendship and this song is perhaps the best way to describe us writers and our realtionship of thoughts and ideas… No, but we both really like this song and it is a great theme for us and the holidays. Fighting!

메리 크리스!

/The Future is Idol

You can be anything you want

December 2, 2011 § Leave a comment

When Yoon Mi Rae, or Tasha as some people know her, released her latest single, I was blown away by her attitude, track and MV. She is by far one of the coolest artists I know from Korea. The release is a complete step away from what comes out of the kpop industry. In the MV she appears as a lady of vengeance and kicks the hell out of the men trying to fight her. Beating the hell out of her own husband, Tiger JK by the end.  She is nothing like the girl groups and some of the female solo artists within the kpop scene, she is not an idol. More power, less sex. I really like her.

All this also tells us that even if you are female and a part of a pop cultural industry, you can be anything you want – as long as you are a rapper and married to the right man with in the industry?

I should have written this ages ago.

/The Future is Idol

 

Bad Girl MV

August 11, 2011 § 12 Comments

Ok! So SM dropped the new SNSD Bad Girl MV. Let me just say, this is not their best MV by far. Not their worst either though. But there is something a little bit… boring over this MV.

SNSD is doing everything just as they should, but to me this feels flat. So I did not jump up and down roaring when I had watched it the first time. So far, last weeks release of Mr. Simple will be the highlight of July.On the other hand it is really interesting to see the sets Bad Girl was filmed in and to think over why this was done.

Apparently SM decided on a concept a little bit more “fierce” this time around for the group. As I have written earlier I was actually surprised that SNSDs first japanese album wasn’t more kawaii then it is. This since I expected each song to sound like a mix of Oh! and Gee(both great songs but you get what I’m after) but doesn’t. Among the new japanese songs there are tracks like Bad Girl, I’m In Love With The Hero and The Great Escape that sounds maturer and more grown up then most of the stuff in this industry at the moment. This made me happy since the cute concepts never ever will be my number one. SNSD has grown up now, the youngest members all passed twenty and there has to be a change in cooncept for one of the greatest girl groups on the planet.

When Bad Girl was chosen as a new MV release I was surprised since I didn’t really expect a new MV at all, none the less that Bad Girl would be the one. Bad Girl is one of my favourite songs on the album, but Im In Love With The Hero is perhaps a cooler track and more suitable for an MV.

Bad Girl was of course chosen for it’s title, it is direct and tells you that this group can be bad girls, or someting like that. I don’t want this to be just a charade and a sexy bad girl dream, but I think it is. It feels glued on in this case more then in others, and this has been a worry of mine since the teaser got out. Even though I was most of all happy over the release.

SM must have discovered that the fiercer girl group concept also work quite well in countries outside Korea and wants to have a piece of that cake as well. But the thing is, it doesn’t get fierce just because you put them on bikes or in front of a couple of containers, but it looks good. SNSD gets fierce when they give a feeling of control, and this time they don’t give me that kind of feeling. They just stand there and it does not matter what ever kind of abilities they have since it just isn’t working in this case.

So good try by SM and SNSD! I hope they will keep working on the concept and takes it further. And really, whats up with the crappy sound quality of the MV?

/The Future is Idol and happy anyway since he really likes SNSD and Bad Girl

So Cool – A new dawn for SISTAR?

August 6, 2011 § 7 Comments

No, I am not a fan of SISTAR, at all,  I want to make that clear to everyone before they start reading.

SISTAR has from the very start delivered some my least favourite coreographies in Kpop history. As an example, they almost always have a butt dance included that almost makes KARAs version of this concept appear like chastity itself:

But yesterday, almost as a joke, I watched the MV teaser for new SISTAR song So Cool with a friend. And we were both almost pleasently surprised:

There is something with this new teaser, maybe the fact that it looks a little bit more fun then just plain sexy that made us hope for a new start for girl group SISTAR.

The teaser starts out just as it always does, The members wear really short dresses and walk like models on a catwalk. Then, a whistle goes off and they start running like hell as hurdlers, but in high heels and dresses at the same time as they laugh and gives us a little feeling of happiness. All to a sound of electric guitars. Could there be something never before seen in this video?

The thing is, that this group, or rather it’s concepts I should say, is really pissing me off like no other over sexualized girl group ever has. I seldom use the word, porn in my writing, but to summarize SISTARs concepts I have no better description. Every time I come across their performances, the only thing I see are four girls with lots of talent, that has to do the exact same cheap looking sex-concept over and over for each and every comeback.

Examples: Hyorin is a part of variety Immortal Song 2 and har been praised for her singing abilities and Bora has been named Idol Athlete because of her highly atheltic scores in different variety show games, she is really cool. But even though they debuted in 2010 and have become quite popular this last year with their catchy tracks, they don’t seem to evolve at all while performing as a group on stage:

Do the fans really want this?

Maybe you think I’m a bit hard or perhaps unfair, SISTAR is certainly not the only girl group/boy band that tries to enchant us with their sexy appearence. But their production team seem to lack both the playfulness, the theatrical side, humor and a sense of conceptual distance that actually some of the other companies have embodied and understand how to work. I compare SISTAR to Rainbow, T-ara, KARA, 4Minute yes even SNSD, a group that sometimes balances on a thin line but seldom goes tacky. SME would rather go bancrupt then letting SNSD do this type of coreography. Luckily for me. All these are groups that evidently use their sexy appearence but I see more then just sex in them. Why? Is butt dance the only answer?

And I’m probably fooling myself, nothing will change with the new SISTAR MV. blah.

The best version so far found of SISTARs How Dare You, watch both! is this one from Key, with a little help from the rest of SHINee.

/The Future is Idol

Dream Wedding

April 27, 2011 § 3 Comments

In white, middle-class Stockholm, you don’t really have to get married. In my generation, having unmarried parents is not uncommon, and having divorced parents is almost the norm. But the marriage statistics are rising. People are getting married again – for purely romantic reasons, it seems.

Now, I get that some cultures require marriage, and that some people do it for religious reasons, or for legal reasons, like citizenship or inheritance issues, but I think that neither church nor state has anything to do with whom I fall in love or whom I choose to sleep with. Even though same-sex couples can get married in Sweden these days, marriage still holds its position as a symbol of an oppressive, old-fashion system where everybody has to end up in a traditional family constellation to get happy, and for me that makes a pretty darn good reason to stay away from it.

In Korean society on the other hand, marriage seems to hold its ground as the one natural way to live with your partner. For a k-pop fan like me, it’s unavoidable – in interviews, dramas and variety shows, it keeps popping up. Everybody past  their earliest twenties get questions about marriage – questions both asked and answered as if marriage was something natural, an obvious step in their life. And talk about sex, even when hinted, immediately gets flagged with a big “OF COURSE I MEAN WHEN I GET MARRIED”-banner. It’s a society where Christian morals are combined with Confucian traditions. My post-modern super-ego pats my head and tells me to try to look at it from a non-Swedish point of view, and I reluctantly do my best to balance complying to this request with keeping my own opinions intact. A tricky thing, indeed.

K-pop is a symbol of South Korea becoming a part of the modern world. It is also the industry of dreams. So when marriage and domestic life is not required for survival, at least a wedding can remain a dream to make money out of. For even though I know my opinions on the subject, does that mean that I’ve never fantasized about what my wedding dress would look like? Does that mean that I don’t secretly get all worked up, going “That’s totally me!” when my oppas rant about the future wife of their dreams being a good cook who shows elders respect? My sober self tries to hold my giggly fangirl self down as k-pop marriage propaganda carries her away on a rose-scented wave of wedding plans…

The picture above makes it really hard not to wish I had cultivated my congenital awkwardness into something more like IU and less like a Michael Cera character.

/Mis

Not nice at all Brian Joo

April 4, 2011 § Leave a comment

Brian Joo(of Fly to the Sky) released an MV teaser for his upcoming comeback and album earlier. The teaser is very dramatic and looks like a preview of a movie rather then a music video. In the teaser you get to see Brian in several different settings, including one scene with him assulting a woman. This is so not ok for me.

To use domesitc violence to promote a new MV is not at all nice. And if you absolutely have to include it in an MV, why in the teaser? The toughest part about this is in the end reading comments from fans underneath the teaser, who apparently find it “interesting” and “wow, I like this 😀 a lot ! :D” . But this kind of violence is never just interesting and should be dealt with carefully and certainly not just in promotional purpose. Of course, these subjects should be adressed even within the pop scene, but how is it used in this case? I really hope there could be a good explanation for Brian Joo to include it. But then again, probably not.

/The Future is Idol

Epic Fanboy Moments pt. 2

April 3, 2011 § Leave a comment

The fanboy term is commonly used to describe a guy that have a very special “nerdy” hobby. Mostly something involving computers, technology or comics. The term fangirl on the other hand describes young females that have an emotional aspect of their hobby, involving specific idols and characters from dramas or comics. This sectioning of terms is not ok. To say that a female has to be emotional in her interest and a male rational and technical is bullshit. Of course there are both male and female fans of both sorts. There are hundreds of thousands of fanboys out there that love and obsess over female and male idols. To say anything else is ridiculous. To promote an future equality concerning these terms, this blog have a new segment for Epic Fanboy Moments. Check them out! If you have any suggestions to this, vids or pics, please write to us!

The Fanboy Moment for today is from G20 UNISON FESTIVAL 8th of March this year. 2NE1 performing, with fanboys chanting.

/The Future is Idol

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