SJ, a senior group sacrificing for Korean Wave culture (Part one)

2015 is Korean senior boy group Super Junior’s 10th debut anniversary. Fans always self-deprecate that “our oppa are old boys now. We shouldn’t call them Super Junior any more.”

For most people in 20’s or 30’s, TVXQ and Super Junior are the synonym for Hallyu culture or K-POP music. Though both groups have members that quitted, they are still fans’ best memories.

Super Junior is the group that brought me into K-POP. The first Music Video I watched is Miracle. I was 9 and I knew nothing about K-POP. I am pretty sure at that time I even didn’t know where South Korea is.

Luckily my parents are not very strict with my studying so I have a lot of free time. I started to search this group’s news online. I also bought a large quantity of posters and decorated my room with those posters.

Every week I also saved my pocket money and bought Korean entertainment magazines, only expecting to read more interesting stories about Super Junior.

sj

TVXQ and Super Junior members are friends since their trainee lives. Some people believed that Super Junior members are just the combination of the trainees who were not talented enough to be chosen into TVXQ. I used to refute and argue with those people but when I grew older, I realized that it doesn’t matter how other people judge my favorite idol. It is enough as long as I know they are the best.

To be honest, they don’t have many advantages when they debuted. Two oldest members were already 23 years old at that time. Their singing skills were not perfect at that time. They weren’t paid attention to by the company because TVXQ is definitely No.1. But look at our oppa now, their mr removed lives are absolutely awesome. We also have two vocals that have their own solo albums.

Super Junior devoted their 20’s to the development of K-POP. They introduced K-POP to the world. But they were not the most shining stars any more when people started to be crazy about K-POP.

Few days ago, 5th Gaon Chart K-POP Awards was held in Seoul. Super Junior’s leader Lee Teuk was the host. The group won the Artist of the Year but only three members showed up on the Award. Compared with Big Bang, who only debuted one year later than Super Junior, the group seemed to be a little bit lonely.

Big Bang had their biggest come back ever in 2015 and shocked the whole K-POP industry with their M.A.D.E Project. While Super Junior, who has the 10th debut anniversary in 2015, only released two special albums. The group never became the center group in SM entertainment in past 10 years. They debuted under the pressure of TVXQ; they grew up with the top female group Girl’s Generation; they became senior group after nowadays the most popular male group EXO debuted.

As a fan, I don’t think awards and first prizes mean a lot for this 10-year-old group any more, at least, not as important as the ones they won five years ago. The happiest thing is that they still come back every year and they are still holding worldwide concerts.

Knowing each other for more than 15 years, members have already had the telepathy. All the members put all the efforts into the songs and present the best performances to fans. It is not easy for 11 Korean boys to stay together for more than 10 years because every Korean male needs to join the military for two years. It has been 6 years since the last time all members were together on the stage. Since Ryeowook will be joining the military quite soon, fans will need to wait for at least another two years till the next time when all the members show up on the stage together.

Usually when there are one or two members who left the group, it is very hard to keep the rest of members together. But Super Junior is not. Even though there are always members who leave the group and join the military before/after the new album and there are always members who come back to the group during the worldwide concerts, the boys can always make everything right.

I hope Super Junior can always stay together, I really hope. Just like 2015, some members focus on host, some members release solo albums, some members take part in dramas, some members create unit but every year they come back with a new album.

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