Friday, July 3, 2009

It’s Idol I have never seen! ‘2pm – Again & Again

2PM Pictures, Images and Photos

source: bestiz
Kor – Eng by Wooggi, Edited by
Coordinator: Cassina@Madam2PMsubs

Last Saturday, people who didn’t suppose to be on MBC’s “Infinity Challenge” appeared. They are 2PM. Even though I already knew that 2PM was going to appear on the show a couple hours before it was broadcasted. However 2PM on the program was still beyond my expectation.

They got unexpectedly good reaction. I thought that they will receive disapproval at first. The intention of the program was good. But it was doubtful that the Infinity Challenge invited a pop idol group to perform in a samgyeopsal (Korean pork barbecue) restaurant. However, what if it was another pop idol groups; would they receive such a good feedback like 2PM? The reason why they got such a good reaction was because they are a rising pop idol?

Not long ago, there was a hot thread on an entertainment bulletin board with the title ‘The legend of events’. The posting was about 2PM’s performance for children on Children’s day. Unlike their usual passionate and wild performance, 2PM showed their childish sides that I couldn’t stop laughing.

However, there was a performance similar to this before. They were to perform for elders at an elder’s college in an episode of MBC Every1 Idol Show Tteotda! Geunyeo’ season 3, which 2PM leader, Jaebeom was given nickname ‘Leadja(leading ) from.

2PM’s performance in samgyeopsal restaurant 2009.05.16 on MBC “Infinity Challenge”.

The reason why 2PM gained rising popularity was mainly from their hosting of the Idol Show. 2PM is seen as ‘an unusual pop idols’ who grew up through that program. For examples, Nichkhun who seems to be getting better in Korean said ‘I’m not a Wink Vending Machine.

Jaebeom once outspoke ‘Everyone watched porn at night except me!’ And when SNSD were their guests, the show revealed that Jaebeom had named the song that he would dance on the show as ‘To Seduce Jessica’ to show his interest on the guest. As a result, not only their fans but also the publics were fascinated by their natural charms. All these things can’t be normally found in other pop idols.

They are ‘never seen before’ idols just like their acrobatic performance of their debut song ‘10 out of 10′. In contrast to Shinee, whose age can say ‘Noona is So Pretty’ so purely, 2PM’s exciting lyrics and manly bodies made me feel excited even though their acrobatics were not that surprising. 2PM is like their lyrics: these boys are ‘making a bad heart’. They got some ‘unlike pop idols’ nicknames such as ‘Cheap Man’, ‘One Hundred Won Abs’, ‘Tearing Jaebeom’, ‘Beasts’ etc. named after their personalities which were seen throughout their show. It is said that Shinee is called ‘Noonas’ wish’ while 2PM is called ‘Noonas’ desire.

2PM showed their wildness and natural instinct like running zebras in the wilds whereas other pop idols are likely to conceal their mystery. (Other pop idols are like monkeys in a zoo.) Frankly, their debut was not special for singers in this big entertainment. Like Big Bang who showed their auditions during their trainees’ period in a reality show, 2PM also showed themselves through a cable TV program ‘Hot Blood Guys’. However, their reality show was not as popular as Big Bang or Wonder Girls’ shows. This was mainly because they had never had their gig to show the public yet.

The most fundamental reason why their debut wasn’t quite successful in making their presence known, was an absence of ‘Mass Media Strategy’ that was used by many entertainments. It is said that JYP was so busy focusing on Wonder Girls that he couldn’t pay attention to other singers in the company. It was easy for 2PM to use ‘Mass Media Strategy’ as they were considered ‘Professional’ through their long training time. (but of course most singers went through this time)

First, It was Junho who got the first place on ‘Superstar Survival’ program, and caught people’s attention because he resembles to Rain. (But I think it’s good that he wasn’t known as carbon copy of Rain. Or he may have many anti fans, and lose his identity.) Taecyeon and Chansung also appeared on that same program. During Taecyeon’s period of trainee, he also appeared on a survival program called XTM and did some CF. Chansung starred as Yoonho’s friend in a drama, High Kick. Nichkhun who is from Thailand, was already very popular with many CF endorsing his careers (He was called ‘Thai Rain’. I don’t know if this is true or not). Jaebeom who is from USA, was once a member of an amateur b-boy team in America. And Wooyong and Junsu were selected by JYP’s open auditions. Recently ‘Mass Media Strategy’ have been used widely to promote artists into the music scene. However, I don’t know why they didn’t use that on 2PM. On the other hand, 2PM was successful through their wild and tough presence not ‘None of Mass Media Strategy’.

The biggest feature of 2PM was being known as younger version of JYP. We can see JYP’s influence in 2PM’s looks and performances for example the provocative lyrics of ‘ 10 out of 10” which is kind of fresh. However, ‘Again & again’ was kind of disappoint me. I couldn’t see their acrobatics I had desired to see in their performance. It is less addictive than ‘10 out of 10′, and it contains JYP’s palpable story that is about bad girl and a painful man. But, they could get popularity by their synchronized dances and vocals.

The public’s reaction was hot even it showed less powerful and addictive. If they came back with the hook song like ‘10 out of 10′, they couldn’t make their presence known, and they would be regarded as just ‘JYP’s dancers’. I think that less addictive ‘Again & again’ can change pop genre, from hook song to the next genre.

On the other hand I don’t like the hit of pop idols because they will go away and aim for overseas’ expansion once they have domestic success. Especially, there are overseas members like, Nichkhun, Taecyeon, and Jaebeom, while the other members are studying English and Chinese due to the company’s overseas expansion goal. Recently, there have not been a few stars who advance abroad. But, in Japan, Arashi managed to get international popularity with only their activity within Japan.

There are many reasons why 2PM is on a rising path. Firstly, big pop idols like Big Bang, Dong Bang Shin Ki, were not active at the moment. Secondly, Super Junior was preparing for their next single. Thirdly, they gained the popularity from the Idol Show ‘Tteotda! Geunyeo’. In Japan, Pop idols who show their naturalness, are getting a lot of popularity as well.(They are called Baka (stupid) idol. Arashi is an example, they show their natural charms which earned them more popularity unlike other mysterious image of Hamasaki Ayumi and KinKi Kids.)

Fourthly, They have many Noona fans which age around 20’s. This large fan base was once a fangirl for the First-Generation Idols like HOT or Sechs Kies when they were teenage. Jokingly, 2PM is called as ‘Beast idol’ and ‘Idol for adults’. Wooyong said ”There were some Noona fans who proposed to me with their bankbooks. Sometimes, I fluttered with that proposes.’
Noona fans are bold and they tend to spend money inconsiderately. 2PM’s concept is ‘younger and manly boys’ so it’s not that hard to win more noona fans.

I can yet to define 2PM’s success but one thing that I’m certain is that 2PM is a good example for a new style idol in this monotonous idols’ world. Pop idols are a big part of popular culture. Not only quality but marketing strategy is also important to enhance the value of the product like GOD in the period of HOT and Sechs Kies, Wonder girls in downfall period of female singers, and 2PM in period of mysterious idols.