For this very special edition of Clash of the Girl Groups, I've decided to take a moment to honor one of the most historically volatile groups in all of Kpop, Of course, I'm referring to T-ara. And last week was one for the history books, friends, as T-ara battled just about everyone. And guess what? They won. Let's take a closer look here. The Clash of the Girl Groups continues!
T-ara vs. One Direction
This had to be one of the funniest meltdowns Kpop fans have witnessed in ages, and for the first time, it wasn't coming from them! How wonderful it felt to see an entirely different fandom embarrass themselves in a meaningless contest, as One Direction decried the impossibility of T-ara besting them in the costly war of fandoms run by Billboard. I couldn't possibly document this better than Asian Junkie has here, but understand that Directioners accusing Queens of somehow cheating, causing more controversy in an endless T-ara controversy loop, is just one part of this story.
For one, these Directioners vastly underestimate T-ara's dominance in China and China's dominance, with just their population, around the world. T-ara has really struck gold here by making a claim for China's heart early. Now every other group is playing catch up. So many Kpop artists have been eyeing America as a future market, but, perhaps, they should have looked next door. Everyone should be keeping an eye on this emerging market, friends.
The second part of this that you really should be keeping an eye on is that so many Kpop fans banded together and voted for T-ara, mostly to spite the arrogant One Direction fans, some of whom were badmouthing Kpop as a whole. This is significant because T-ara as an ambassador for Kpop would be abhorrent to many Kpop fans just a year ago. A year ago, many of these Kpop fans would probably be on the frontlines championing against T-ara, complaining about how SNSD didn't make it to the final four of these fan wars. Speaking of SNSD, have you seen "Lion Heart" yet? Good stuff, good stuff.
So, anyway, what's changed? Maybe time has healed many of the wounds T-ara's scandals have caused. But also the tumultuous 2014 happened, and Jessica left Girls' Generation in a very controversial fashion, proving that no group is exempt from trauma. There will always be those that associate T-ara as bullies or dismiss them as scandalous, but there's also a palpable shift here, which certainly makes sense. Because after all of this time, aren't you ready to forgive T-ara already?
It's not over yet, friends. T-ara fans are facing off against Beyonce fans in the finals, and it looks like T-ara is going to beat this fandom handedly. And when the Queens beat the Beyhive, will Kpop fans feel proud? Will all finally be forgiven?
T-ara vs. One Direction: THE QUEENS
T-ara vs. Their Fans???
This story is all full of ughhh. Right when T-ara is in the midst of winning the week and embarrassing One Direction, this story comes out. A few T-ara fan sites shut down after T-ara didn't visit them after filming the Idol Star Athletics Championship. These groups shut down in a huff, feeling outraged that T-ara had insulted them. You can read more about it on Reddit, where a lot of news can be sifted through and, just as often, ignored. This is a story that could very well be ignored, as it turns out that T-ara couldn't visit the fans because MBC held them late.
So, egg meet face.
These very same fan sites have since apologized for their rash behavior, but the damage is done, the news spread that T-ara didn't treat their fans well, were arrogant, etc, until it turns out not to be true. Here's the question. WHAT ON EARTH WERE THESE FANS THINKING? As Cesar cried out, "Et tu, Brute?" Or, more significantly, as T-ara N4 famously asked, "Why You Hating?"
For one, why would fans be so quick to go against their favorite idols? Without so much of the facts, Jack? And for two, with T-ara's recent tumultuous years, wouldn't you make sure your slight was legitimate before making it public? You'd think the fans themselves (even these small subgroups of fans) would understand the ramifications of their actions here. And now, they're just playing the apology game.
Which is to say, it's refreshing to see that the T-ara members aren't the ones doing the apologizing for once. There won't be any tears shed on variety shows over this incident. It seems that this is already being forgotten, but one wonders, with fans like these, who needs anti-fans?
T-ara vs. Their Fans: NOT ALL QUEENS
But enough fighting. T-ara is the winner here. So let's close this off with a live performance, shall we?
Timothy Moore writes from Chicago. He blogs at Read My Blog Please, and edits at Ghost Ocean Magazine. His biases are T-ara, Block B, Nine Muses, Brown Eyed Girls, and Girl's Day.