This Week in Kpop: June 21-27, 2015

Sulli f(x)

This Week in Kpop girl groups came back with a vengeance! But what captured our attention wasn't the releases and comebacks, but the leaks and the rumors surrounding some of our favorite idols. We're thinking about Sulli. We're talking about Jessica. But let's stop stalling and get started already!

Goodbye, Sulli?

Say it isn't so, Sulli! Oh, never mind, it has probably been so for a while now. Rumors have circulated that Sulli will leave f(x) but remain with SM and focus on her acting. While normally we wouldn't give much credence to Kpop's whirlwind rumors, SM's stock reply feigning ignorance (instead of giving a firm denial) makes us believe this could very well be true or will be true soon, at least. There are shades of Jessica here and everyone that has left Exo. We're ready for the firestorm unleashed by angry netizens, and have already seen a lot of "good riddance" and "Sulli ruined f(x)'s last comeback." And you know what? f(x)'s comeback really was a missed opportunity and we will be eternally bummed that they didn't continue promotions. Did you hear "Rainbow?" Or: "Milk?"

But if this does happen to be true, we hope that we'll be seeing some grace from our fellow Kpop lovers. f(x) has been around since 2009. That's six years, friends. You add in four-five years of training, and that's at least a decade in this grueling industry, and that's not even considering how your life is placed under a microscope and a single cup of coffee with a friend could land you in Dispatch or some other "news" entity. That has to age someone, and quick. Would it be so hard to believe that an idol could be burnt out? Isn't six years long enough to entertain you? And when it comes down to it, f(x) will be fine without Sulli (we still think they can be SM's future). When it comes down to it, with six years under her belt, Sulli doesn't owe fans anything.

BTS' "Dope"

In a week of massive girl group overload, it may just be BTS that gets the nod for release of the week. Not that we have a chart system in place or anything (Wait: should we have a chart system in place???!). "Dope" is just dope, and is the energetic song we need after our hearts were ripped out after "I Need U." There's some amazing choreography and costumes here, and these boys have developed, or maybe have always had, their own unique charisma. They've become one of the more multi-faceted Kpop groups, and we're impressed by the fact that they can transition from a more serious concept to this without missing a beat or losing their core ethos. Hopefully, they won't release some type of "Original Version" for "Dope" that ends up with the group getting electrocuted in a lake of fire! Our hearts can't take it!

Teen Top's "ah-ah"

Teen Top may have released the song of the summer here, and the great thing with this summer release is that its charms don't hinge on this being (simply) a summer song - it's so much more! The boys get a chance to let loose here, and although we're a bit worn down by the boys-harassing/flirting-with-girls affectation (because really, this isn't real life), their talents and collective energy bursts through the tired setup. "ah-ah" has a Motown flavor that grooves and keeps on grooving, and the choreography is just gold. If anything, this release is probably better than BTS' new release, and certainly a more rounded summer song than we've seen in a while. But what do you think, friends? BTS vs. Teen Top? Who wins this round? Or maybe we all win here?

Playback's "Playback"

We're still waiting for that stellar girl group debut for 2015. Some have come close, most have turned out to be pretty generic and cutesy thus far. Where's this year's Mamamoo? Maybe 2014 just spoiled us too much. Playback's "Playback" isn't the sleeper hit we are looking for, but it is a solid, fun song that has a catchy hook (which may or may not include Playback in the lyrics). The girls seem charismatic, and talented, and while the video is mostly forgettable, there are some strange images and cute choreography to keep you coming back.

JuB and Ji Dam Yuk's "My Sympathy"

Hey, it's JuB from Sunny Hill and a rapper from Unpretty Rapstar (Ji Dam Yuk)! And it's a good song and it probably won't get a lot of attention, but you never know! We're a little meh on this overall, but maybe on further listen we'll be slayed. A lot of new releases means a lot of opportunities for a release like this to get lost in the shuffle, which is a shame. We'll give it another listen. Right now.

Chaeyeon's "Obvious"

After, what? Four years? Five years? Chaeyeon is back with a fun, ridiculous video! It seems to be the flavor for female idols! What do you think, friends? Worth the wait?

AOA vs. Alternate Universe SNSD vs. Mamamoo vs. Sistar

There were so many girl group releases this week that we decided to bring them together in one climactic face-off! In this corner, we have the spectacular AOA, in this other corner, the slapstick Mamamoo, in yet another corner there's Sistar and they're just shaking it over there! And what's this? We have one more corner, and it features surprise entrants: Alternate Universe SNSD! FACE-OFF BEGINS NOW. Which of these girl groups slay with their new releases? Find out here!

S.O.S. - Save Our Sister!

"Save our Sistar?" you may ask yourself. But they seem so happy! Why would they need saving?! Well, first of all, calm down already. They're not in peril, really. Some of you are even okay with them being trapped in perpetual summer. But there's more to Sistar's problems, and we'll tell you about them right here.

June 21-27, 2015

And that was This Week in Kpop! The girl groups came roaring back, but somehow, we feel that they've been a bit overshadowed by releases from the likes of BTS and Teen Top. Maybe we're way off-base here! Next week may be just as spectacular as this week, but hopefully with far less drama! Until then, have fun and be safe!


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