For many international KPOP fans, getting to know a newly-debuted band becomes a challenge. First of all, there is the language barrier and learning an idols’ names and the lyrics to their songs can be difficult at first. And then, information and access to the artists’ activities are quite limited even with the existence of social media. This is why I think that it takes passion and patience to be a KPOP fan.
Why am I saying all these stuff? Because I also found myself being challenged when a very talented group with not just six or seven but 13 members debuted in 2015.
S.Coups became a trainee in 2010 and was part of the original Pledis Boys. He was already a part of the line-up for NU’EST but decided to postpone his debut to hone his skills some more. S.Coups said in an interview that his ideal type is someone who cooks well and who doesn’t have any inhibitions in eating what they want. Looks like the way to this man’s heart is through his stomach!
Jeonghan was born in Hwaseong, South Korea and he has a younger sister. He proclaimed himself as the third in rank based on visuals after Vernon and Mingyu. I’m not sure if I agree with that but I do know he has a very angelic face. He says that out of the members of Seventeen, he’s the closest to Joshua. I like that because I have this extreme thing for the “JiHan” OTP that I actually made a few fanfics. I just can’t stop imagining that these two would make a great gay couple.
While Joshua is a full Korean by birth, he was born and raised in the US, particularly in Los Angeles, California. This is why he has a very charming accent when he speaks English. He’s not really the energetic and the scene-stealer type. He’s more of a calm person but opens up more when he feels comfortable.
Jun was born in Shenzhen, Guangdong, Chine and he grew up there. In fact, he was already a celebrity when he was a child as he appeared in a few films and TV dramas in China as a child actor. Many fans, including myself, say that he really looks like Super Junior’s Heechul. Jun’s ideal type is a little weird. He says he likes a girl that looks innocent and pure and he also said he gets attracted to sexy girls. I guess he wants the best of both worlds, eh?
The members and fans know Hoshi as “10:10”. This is because the shape of his eyes resembles the hands of the clock when the time is 10:10. He is also very vocal about being a huge fan of SHINee. In one of the video clips released in the groups social media channel, Hoshi attended SHINee’s concert and he was one of those who screamed fanchants really loud.
Every KPOP fan knows that in every boy group, there is almost always someone who’s the “cold city guy”. That person looks and feels like he has a cold personality and he only warms up to the people he is close with. Wonwoo is that person in Seventeen. He really isn’t the noisy type and fans like me would rejoice when we see clips of him being a dork. Wonwoo is commonly paired up with Mingyu and their OTP is called “Meanie” and their photos together can be very misleading sometimes.
Woozi was born in Busan, South Korea. As a child, he started playing band instruments like the clarinet and he was into classical music even then. Little did he know that his musical education would lead him to be one of the best songwriters of this generation. Woozi is on the smaller side in terms of height so the members love to tease him about it.
DK is one of the group’s energizer. He likes to be cheerful all the time so he does his best in making other people energetic as well. Although sometimes, it can get out of control so he is vowing to learn how to have self-control. When asked about whether he would date an older or a younger girl, he said he prefers someone older because he likes to be taken care of.
Mingyu is the pillar of the group. I mean, he’s literally the pillar because he is the tallest among all the members. He is really good in hair styling and he sometimes style the hair of the members. Back then, he used to be a little insecure with his dark skin but he learned how to accept it. He is a part of a group of idols who are friends because of their same age. The group includes BTS’s Jungkook, GOT7’s Bambam and Yugyeom, NCT’s Jaehyun, and Astro’s Cha Eunwoo.
The8 was born in Anshan, Liaoning, China. He did b-boying when he was younger and he trained in a few martial arts. So, in parts of the group’s choreographies, he is mostly the one doing acrobats and stunts. He explained that because he is Chinese, he included the number 8 in his stage name as it is believed to be lucky.
Seungkwan is the known to be one of the few idols in the industry that came from Jeju Island. He is the official mood maker of the group and he has the most appearances in variety shows. He can sometimes become annoying because of his loud mouth. This is why his ideal type would be someone who is easy-going and would be someone that is like a friend.
Vernon is the next member of the group who was born in the US. He was born and raised in New York, the complete opposite of where Joshua is from. As you might have noticed, Vernon has a mixed blood. His father is Korean and his mother is American. He is known to be very protective of his sister named Sofia. The members would sometimes tease him and ask about whether they can date Sofia and he’d get upset.
Dino is the youngest member of the group and he was born in Iksan-si, Jeollakbu-do, South Korea. Dancing is in their family blood. His parents are dancers and his father actually opened a dance school and he learned how to dance there.
Seventeen and Me
I wasn’t really fully aware of Seventeen’s existence right when they debuted last May 26, 2015. Actually, I only came to know them when I was watching music programs to wait for another group to perform. I could remember that I used to scoff at the thought of the group having so many members.
And then, I heard about Seventeen being casually mentioned alongside another group who is apparently good friends with the group that I was following that time. I got really curious and I started researching about them. It was the usual type of research. You know, trying to read their names and finding out their age, watching their music video, listening to their songs.
In the middle of my research, I chanced upon this show called “Seventeen Project” which was like a variety show about the group while they are preparing for their debut. I got some free time back then so I decided to watch the first few episodes of it to get a feel for the group members’ personalities. The next thing I found out, I was able to finish the entire show in one night and had already proclaimed a bias. I seriously slipped into the diamond life.
Since then, I became a fan of Seventeen. I always watch their MVs right when they are released and I listened to their albums as soon as they are available for digital purchase. I do like buying physical albums but they can sometimes get a little pricey and acquiring them can be a hassle from I am coming from. So, I’m already content in listening to KPOP songs through streaming services as they are a lot more affordable.
So far, Seventeen has released, accumulating the albums, repackages, and mini-albums, a total of 12 productions. Like other KPOP fans, I tend to find it hard to really choose one favorite song from all of their releases. I have a favorite song for every comeback because they have different concepts and genres every time. But, if I were to really choose one song, I’d say that it would be “20”. It’s a song from their very first album called “17 Carat”. It featured the vocal team of the group: Jeonghan, Joshua, Woozi, DK, and Seungkwan.
I like how the song is just a very soft pop one. It’s upbeat but not too fast and busy to be noisy. It also has very sweet, young, and romantic lyrics. I may be too old for teenage love songs but I know how to appreciate emotions.
The other reason why I love “20” is the fact that it’s a song by the vocal team where Joshua is a part of and Joshua is my bias. I think Joshua is really charming. He’s visually gifted with proportionate features. He may not be able to belt out high notes that much but he has a really sweet and soothing voice. I could already imagine a scenario where Joshua is that kind of boyfriend that would serenade his partner with a guitar by the beach on a bonfire. He also a weird kind of humor. Not many people appreciate it. Actually, the members may find it annoying and boring. But, I love it. His jokes are cute and the embarrassed expression he makes when others shut him off from saying a bad joke is really adorable.
If there is one thing that I’m thankful for when it comes to Seventeen’s career is that they debuted at a really nice timing. Because of that, the growth of their following has steadily been so progressive that in no time, they already made themselves known to the global audience. Add to that the immense talent that the boys have.
They are acclaimed for being “self-producing” idols. This means that a large percentage of their comebacks are contributed by the members themselves. Woozi, the vocal team’s leader, is known for writing some of the group’s biggest hits. S.Coups, the leader of the rap team and the entire group, contributes to the good rap verses of their songs. Hoshi, who is in charge of the performance team, contributes to the amazing choreography of their songs. Other members have also composed songs that were included in some of their albums and some have created choreographies that were released in their social media channels.
I think this is a really important factor for the KPOP idols of this generation. It would really help the group’s popularity and value if they work more closely with the production of their albums. The fans are now looking for more than just pretty faces, good vocals, amazing moves, and sick rapping. They look for real talent and involvement and that’s what Seventeen possessed from the very beginning.
To date, the group already received 31 awards and citations from different Korean and international award-giving bodies. They also had 23 awards in different music programs with the latest win from Inkigayo for their latest single, “Home”. Their latest Inkigayo award is a very big achievement as they were the very first artist from Pledis who won in Inkigayo since 2009.
The future holds so much for Seventeen. They are still a young group and they’ve achieved a lot. They are in the middle of working their way up to success and it’s a very pleasant sight to see them work hard for it and enjoying the fruits of their labor.