QRIMOLE – August 2020

It’s time for QRIMOLE!  Let’s take a look at more reader questions for Kpopalypse!

Hello, sir! So first of all I wanted to say that although I know you’ll say you put all of 15 seconds into it, I did appreciate your comment on the orchestra version of “End of a Day.” Lately I’ve been thinking about how Jonghyun’s public image has been changing over time — partly just because of time passing, partly because he’s not around now to do anything that might piss fans off, but also because the fan-conversations that were happening five or six years ago are disappearing from the record. To give you an example of what I mean: on my old LiveJournal I have a 2014 comment from a Shawol who explained to me, in some detail, how Jonghyun had been acting like a self-important diva and her beloved Onew had been having to put up with it. Now, we didn’t keep in touch, and I couldn’t tell you now if that person is still around, still follows K-pop, what have you. Nor do I have any real reason to think she “knew” what was going on, and if I had to bet money I’d bet that she wouldn’t, in 2020, stand by what she wrote in 2014. So on the one hand we could say, fairly, that that comment wasn’t of much value. I’m figuring there are *lots* of similarly valueless comments from that era — people did love to speculate about SHINee infighting — which have been deleted as people close Tumblr/Twitter/LJ/AFF accounts and move on. But now, on the other hand, we have this counter-narrative of Jonghyun-as-angel, which to me feels too sanitized and simple to be valuable or more “true” — in fact I personally prefer the Jonghyun-character as star and generator of bitchy gossip to the Jonghyun-character who was Too Pure for This World. So does that mean that the previous comments had value after all? And if they did, should we (speaking very generally) go to any length to make sure they don’t get permanently scrubbed from the Web? I floated these questions past a friend who’s studying archive and library sciences but we didn’t get anywhere. I’m not sure there’s anywhere to get. But I was curious what your take on what Jonghyun’s case (Sulli’s and Hara’s cases being different, since the online discourses were different about them to begin with) might imply in terms of thinking about archiving and historical memory in K-pop.

Meanwhile: I am in the midst of writing a series of essays about idol pop (in which I talk a lot about Korean idol pop, but it’s not primarily about K-pop). So I wanted to ask: one, would it be okay for me to quote (and cite, obviously) the Josh interview? In the past I’ve just cited your work without asking but I wanted to make a point of asking on that one, since it was still wrapped softly last I checked. And two: once I finally finish it and publish it, would you like a link? You’ve said a couple times that you’re much busier these days, so I understand if you cbf, but I’ve been reading your work for a long time now and it has influenced my thinking, so it seemed only fair to offer.

Jonghyun – I call this change in popular opinion the “Michael Jackson effect” as this was even more pronounced in his case.  He went from being reviled as an alleged pedophile to being deified literally overnight, with radio stations transforming immediately from making jokes about him to discussing him in hushed reverent tones and playing his songs 24 hours in a row in many cases.  I think it’s worth keeping the pre-death comments around simply because they’re a record of this effect, because after the death of a celebrity occurs everyone who can feasibly claim that they actually loved the celebrity all along, always does so!

Similar stuff also happened with Nirvana, the “In Utero” album was heavily criticised when it came out for being basically weak, and Kurt was criticised as well for all sorts of random things, all of which basically amounted to various aspects of him not really giving a fuck and not behaving “as one should” in the public eye.  Everyone forgot all of that as soon as he died of course.

I’m not saying that any of the criticisms of these people before they died were (or weren’t) valid – that’s not really the point – I’m just noting more how the shifting wind of popular opinion when someone dies turns so many of the living into a bunch of hypocrites.  “Don’t speak ill of the dead” is stupid – if someone’s a rapist it should be acknowledged at their funeral.  If someone wrote bad songs you shouldn’t feel obliged to listen to them, there’s plenty of living artists who could use your patronage.  Elvis Costello wrote a song called “Tramp The Dirt Down” about how if Margaret Thatcher died before he did, he was going to step on her grave.  I really find Elvis Costello generally boring as fucking shit but I think he had the right idea there.

Totally fine to quote any of my stuff as long as you cite it.  Will be happy to receive any links where people have referenced my writing, although I usually find out anyway when people follow those links.

Speaking of qrimole, what do you think of qri’s new face?

Which one?  Sorry I can’t keep up with her visits to the clinic.  As long as the iconic mole remains, we’re good.

do you ever read kpop blind gossip items?

No.  I don’t even care about k-pop gossip when I DO know who’s involved.

What’s your favourite New Order song?

True Faith, although much stuff from around then is pretty good.

an idol that I like was involved in some controversy due to a tweet in a language other that English. Their tweet was worded in a way that clearly sounded like a joke, but since it was an ill mannered joke about a delicate subject and it’s difficult to read tone over the internet they got some rightful backlash from native speakers of such language.
But when the controversy started getting English coverage the hate escalated, because the translation of the tweet wasn’t accurate and couldn’t reflect the tone that was used originally, so instead of getting hate for making a bad joke about something related to (bad thing x), they were accused by the Divine Court of Twitter of promoting (bad thing x). And because of that I could see firsthand all of the crazy conclusions those woke stans jump into and things like “thank God I never liked them” or “now I have a reason to hate them”.

I’m not one of those “oppar/unnir didn’t mean it” but I can’t help but feel bad for the idol for being target of hate due to something that’s not accurate (and I know it’s not accurate because I know the language so I know what was being said originally). I mean, even if it wasn’t a joke and the idol really was a supporter of (bad thing x) I wouldn’t feel so bad because I’m aware that most artists are jerks and I don’t care as long as they create something that I enjoy, but in this case it’s not what appears to be true so it’s more like of a “I can’t stand seeing someone being unfairly accused of something” kind of situation.

So, I want to ask for an advice on how to find inner peace under this situation. I’ve read most of your writings about “woke” stans/haters on the internet and I thought I would be able to handle this but now that it’s happened to an idol I know I’m having trouble with actually doing it. My friends have mostly jumped on the hate wagon and I’ve searched most replies/QRTs related to the subject but haven’t found anything other than this mindless hate so I can’t help but feel isolated.

I know the feeling because I had it back in T-ara days, when I was one of about five people on the Internet who knew that the accusations against them were nonsense.  Of course nobody believed me, but I knew history would prove me right and it did – the truth always comes out eventually.  It’s a difficult feeling when your entire peer group just completely jumps the shark over some nonsense, and it’s echoed everywhere else, that’s why people have such a hard time thinking rationally.  When you’re swamped with literally everyone except yourself thinking “idol supports bad thing x” then you start to even think yourself “gosh well maybe they have a point” and it just becomes easier for a lot of people to go with the flow, especially given that the stakes aren’t really that high for them personally.  It’s tricky to be a minority in any situation when there’s an option not to be, that just involves suspending a few rational objections and voices inside your head.

The solution to finding inner peace here, and the reason why I always stuck to my guns, comes from self-confidence and self-esteem.  If you value yourself and you value your perspective on a situation, you won’t look so much for outside validation or peers.  While you shouldn’t look to this as a reason to discount actual evidence, if you actually legitimately know that you’re right, and not just because “it seems like” or “I can just tell” but through real factual investigation where you have actually considered all the sides and not just blown off the stuff you disagree with because it doesn’t sit with you politically or whatever, then there’s no reason not to be steadfast.  The best work you can do when you’re faced with a situation like this, isn’t work on the actual situation itself (which you can’t control), but work on yourself, in focusing on being a stronger, wiser person.

Do you evaluate songs based on your musical knowledge or are your reviews just opinions?

Those aren’t mutually exclusive.  My opinions are informed by musical knowledge.  Having said that, they’re still just opinions – just because my knowledge colours how I feel about a song doesn’t make me “more correct” when I say “this song sucks”.  You might like it and that’s perfectly okay.  However I don’t bother to point out this kind of nuance each and every time I write two thoughtless sentences about some song that I hate, because it’s boring to read, and I figure most readers kind of “get it” anyway, and if they don’t, I’m really not that bothered.

Sadly, a second wave of COVID-19 has started here. In the country I live in, the politicians have the tendency to water down everything virologists and other experts in immunology suggest. Hence, in cities and local communities the people in power have decided to implement stricter rules (and in some places a curfew). They did that after they saw the statistics: the second wave had been predicted to result in way more* deads than the first one. Which will probably happen, regardless of the government’s efforts: people still go on holidays and will eventually go home. This feels like a repeat of the first wave and tbh, makes feel like I have to mentally prepare for another lockdown. Any idea how I can think about this in a more positive light? I’m starting to feel like all my previous efforts of following guidelines have been rendered useless.

* In case you want to know: R-value is currently>>1, K-value isn’t good either. On prediction graphs the second wave was approx. 2x the first (wish that will turn out incorrect, but so far current developments are what those 95% certainty models have been predicting)

A second wave is starting in (some parts of) my country too, after we very successfully dealt with the first wave.  Some places of the country are now worse than the peak of the first wave, because Australians are dumb cunts who think COVID is caused by genetically modified 5G chemtrails.  It’s easy to be despairing to be honest.  Trying to control the outbreaks is like holding grains of sand, because humans are human and they will do stupid selfish shit all the time, and it only takes a tiny minority of people doing the wrong thing to really fuck things up for everyone else.  At least whatever you’re going through, everyone around you is going through it too, there’s not a person on the planet who can’t relate in some way.  Therefore the best way to handle these things I think its to reach out to others, just make sure you keep communication open, isolate physically but don’t isolate mentally.  It should help somewhat.

Im new , please dont get mad at me but which kpop groups are your ultimate bias groups? thanks

All good.  Question for total newbies answered here and here, and you may also find this helpful.

Do you ever feel you just want aegyo or other behavioral feats of performative childishness and naivete from idols to stop? Not that idols should be freely speaking their minds without any restrictions at all (we know how dumb and ignorant they can be), but why let reactionary fuckheads constantly dictate how conservative these ‘artists’ should be?

It doesn’t really “bother” me as I know it’s all bullshit so I just disregard it.  However I’d really like to debut my own group one day and instruct them specifically to not do any of that crap.  However I don’t really have the cash flow or the time to make that happen.

Hi Oppar, Blackpink official twitter is just launched at June, but how come they still get the username @Blackpink? I mean … there must be people using that name before right? Do they buy or reserve the account? But if they do that doesn’t the account join info would be so much earlier than June this year?

I don’t know if this good enough for you to be answered lol. Anyway I played Chuu Yves game and it is so fun even though I keep scrolling the post’s comments for clues. Thank you for your hard work!

People who own large brands can negotiate those type of things with Twitter.  Twitter takes a dim view of “username squatters”.

For anyone who hasn’t yet completed “Try Not To Have Gay Sex With Yves 2: The Return Of Not Having Gay Sex With Yves” a walkthrough is now available at the Kpopalypse Patreon.  It’s free for everybody, not just Patreon subscribers!

Hey kpopalypse! hater for 3 years, reader for 4 here, this is my first time writing to u! not that u’d care about all that lmao. Anyway, since u do relationship questions alot, i wanna ask one too. There’s this girl who i’ve had an on-off kind of relationship with and last month i told her flat out that i thought we were too unhealthy for eachother, as i would never tell her any of my personal problems and she would ignore me or not take interest in anything else i had to say. my therapist told me that maybe i should let her ask me things about my personal problems and i did. except she unloaded a butt-load of feelings on me, about how she “cant stop thinking about me” and “she cant ever feel the same about anyone else” also implications of wanting to get back together if we mend our friendship, which i am trying to do. Whats the safest possible option for me to take so i don’t lose a friend but dont end up in a bad relationship again?
(for some context, im a girl and im from a muslim country hahahhaha and this girl was my first proper relationship)

Just be honest.  You were honest with me when you said you hated me for three years, it wasn’t that hard to do, right?  So you should be able to be honest with this person too.  Firstly, I’d consider this – if she fixed the unhealthy side of the relationship, would you want it to continue if it was a good relationship rather than a bad one?  I think that’s something you need to think about the answer to before you approach her.  Then just be totally upfront: “I’d like x but I don’t want y”, or alternately, depending on how you feel about it, “I’d like y but only if you fix z”.  Also talk about the communication issues that made you want to call it off.  If she really feels the way she says she does about you, perhaps she’d be willing to tackle those in a real way.  On the other hand perhaps she’s just too self-absorbed to see past her own needs to what you want.  I can’t tell you which is which and how much potential for improvement she has, that’s the sort of thing that you should be able to sense though.  Of course if that’s the path you want to go down, you need to hold her to any agreement on how it will be and not let things slip back into the old destructive pattern, that can be hard to do – so stand firm and don’t tolerate any wavering, because if you really mean that much to her, you’re worth more than a half-assed relationship, right?  Good luck!

what currently active kpop act(s) do you think show the best potential for their future? which ones do you think will be irrelevant sooner?

No idea.  I don’t really follow fame levels that much or have any stock invested in it.  Good luck to them all I guess, but obviously it’s a competitive market and there isn’t room for everybody to be A-list.  Hey listen to this song it’s really good and guaranteed to be irrelevant always, like so much of the best music.

have you seen the way army have been defaming, harassing and threatening the producer and songwriter melanie fontana recently? she posted on instagram expressing pride for the achievements and chart success of the more recent songs she worked on for bts and now army have unleashed a hate campaign against her for supposedly “taking all the credit”, which is an intentional misreading of her words. they act like bts do majority of the writing and production of their music but on most of their songs there are several producers and songwriters before them in the official song credits. the mass hatred against fontana is the worst i’ve ever seen. tweets and comments making severe violent, explicit death and sexual assault threats against her are going without criticism and being upvoted by the hundreds. it’s foul and makes me physically ill. i’ve been drifting away from the fandom for a while now due to the increasingly toxic behaviour of army and this might be the final nail in the coffin for me. this is the most ashamed i’ve ever been to call myself an army.

I haven’t been following this, but I know enough to know that ARMYs are really great at cutting their own throats at every opportunity.  BTS are a legitimately huge group and they would be talked about and promoted a hell of a lot more than they already are, except nobody in media wants to go anywhere near them anymore due to their incredibly toxic cult-like fanbase, which is now considered to be on the same deep lunacy tier as idiots like QAnon.  News of toxicity spreads super-fast through employees of media outlets, and the way that ARMYs do their best to see the negative side of even the most positive of interactions, and then punish people harshly for that, has been noted, worldwide.  This is the logical conclusion of the current Internet culture of “wokeness”, everybody is straining so hard to be seen to be “the most woke” and “look I identified the problematic thing” that they can’t help turning that hyper-critical lens of super-high moral standards that literally nobody can ever live up to on their own allies and start eating each other alive.  That’s not to say that people shouldn’t care about issues or whatever, but there’s no nuance, no forgiveness and no self-reflection or genuine will to better society when it comes to ARMYs.

Hi Kpopalypse, since you have top 100 kpop song of 2010s, why not created top 30 kpop songs of 2000s? 100 is pushing it for kpop dark age & 30 seems kpopalypse number. If there is more songs, how about creating the honorable mention as well? Some of these songs are so good, so I want new caonima to know as well.

I combined both your dark age list & golden age list listed below, not in particular order as you are the only one who can rank them since it’s supposed to be kpopalypse top 30 after all & your liking my change over time. I mean you said you liked Yves – New & Twice – Knock Knock more than your top favorite of 2012 – 2016, but you put Lovelyz – Ah Choo (2015) on 2nd place in your top 100. Some songs on top 100 were not ranked highly on their release year. Blow my mind >.<

I still cannot believe that “Wonder Girls – So Hot” cannot beat some of these songs from dark age.

Girls Generation – Gee
Girls Generation – Into the new world
Girls Generation – Girl Generation
2NE1 – Fire
Kara – Wanna
Wonder Girls – Tell Me
Wonder Girls – Nobody
Super Junior – Sorry Sorry
Brown Eyed Girls – Abracadabra
T-ara – Bo Peep Bo Peep
T-ara – Like the first time (song released in 2009 although mv was on 2010)
Mc Sniper – Pine Pine Green Pine
Jang Nara – Sweet Dream
Click B – Love Letter
S#arp – 100 days prayer
BoA- no 1
Lee Jung Hyun – Nuh/You
Kooki – Choae
Seeya – Hateful
Brown Eyed Girls – Oasis
Tae Jin Ah – Companion
Drunken Tiger – 8:45 Heaven
Baby V.O.X Re.V – Never Say Goodbye
Hyun Young – Sister’s Dream
Young Turks Club – Jung
So Chan Wee – Tears
Epik High – Fan
Goofy – The Rule Of The Game
1TYM – Hot
Seo Taiji – Ultramania
Papaya – Listen To Me

I couldn’t find 100 songs I actually liked in the 2000s I think, or maybe I could but it would take too long.  Finding 30 from the year dot through to 2007 was hard enough, and a top 30 from the 2000s wouldn’t look drastically different to the existing lists combined, so I think I’ll pass!

As you pointed out, my top 100 of the 2010s list came with a very specific disclaimer stating that my opinions do change over time.  Any inconsistencies with that list vs previous lists are 100% deliberate, with the only exception being that Park Bom’s “You And I” is a 2009 song and shouldn’t be on the list at all, that was a genuine fuckup but it’s a good song so fuck it, it can stay where it is, not gonna change it now.

Hello. Your blog deeply covers all colors of crazy fans’ obsessions (objectification, delusion, bad music taste etc).

But what about idols themselves? Is it possible that these nice girls are addicted to fans’ reaction so, these mental disorders are mutual? When half-asleep [Bomi/Tayeon/etc] starts instagram live stream just to be with fans, isn’t it sad?

Social networking media is nice thing, but I think it’s a bit too intimate interaction with a person you’ll never be close to in first place.

I think that it’s almost impossible not to go some form of crazy when you’re in the public eye unless you’re very strong mentally.  It’s a very strange mental space to be in and a lot of people have extreme difficulty coping, the list of artists both East and West who “had the world at their feet” yet suicided is long.  Adding to it is the perception among the general public that once you’re famous you’ve “made it” and basically you don’t have to worry about anything, in fact the reverse is true and you actually have a bunch more things to worry about that most people just take for granted, plus all the original concerns you had. For example people think that fame is great because wouldn’t it mean that everyone loves you, but the truth is that when you’re famous and people who “love you” speak to you, there’s always the thought in the back of your mind “are they talking to me because they really like me, or are they just liking the idea of me, or the image I present, or do they just want to talk to their friends about how they spoke to me, or are they trying to get something out of me, or are they secretly psycho” etc.  This is why famous people mostly have relationships with other famous people – it’s really hard for people on the outside to relate to this and cut through that barrier, which kind of has to be there for idols’ safety.  And that’s assuming you’re someone with popular appeal and everyone likes you, and doesn’t even get into the fact that a lot of people might hate you straight out of the gate without even knowing anything about you.  Fame is even more of a headfuck for people who are under controversy or who divide opinions sharply.

Is Goo Hara’s ex really in jail? I want that caonima to rot there like this whole world.

Check here.

You’ve mentioned Take On Me as one of the best 80s pop songs in some old post of yours. Do you like any other a-Ha songs?

Also Morten Harket is my oppa

Not really no.

Hi oppar!

So I’ve been listening to Depeche Mode lately, mostly their 80s and 90s stuff, to be precise. I suddenly realized that their song ”Everything Counts” basically predicted kpop. There’s even Korea mentioned in the lyrics (although probably just to rhyme with career, a common choice of words, still an interesting coincidence). Other than that, lyrics are anti-capitalist and kpop industry is hypercapitalist. Lyrics aside, it sounds very dark to me in every way, and kpop is very dark as we all know.

Or maybe Enjoy the Silence is better in this case? ”Words are very unnecessary, they can only do harm” and ”words are meaningless and forgettable” seem like nice answers when some cao ni ma asks a kpop fan that one stupid question – ”how can you listen to it if you have no idea what they’re singing about?”

Damn, now I wonder what would happen if kpop existed in the 80s? According to your very necessary words that didn’t do any harm – kpop is always a certain number of steps behind western pop when it comes to trends and sucked production-wise at its beggining so it’s likely that we woundn’t get any good stuff. Or am I maybe wrong here?

This has become a very crappy pile of random thoughts of a music loving teenager so let me just tell you that I enjoy your blog, it’s comforting and nice to read something good after piles of mind-numbing garbage polluting the kpop fandom. Thank you for everything.

I find the idea of “anti-capitalist pop musicians” amusing.  They always change their tune if the actual money does come rolling in.  It’s easy to be anti-capitalist when you’re broke anyway, not so much when you have something to lose out of the deal and adherence to your ideology means you might have to either give up something nice or look like a hypocrite (people generally pick the latter).  Anyone who is reading this who identifies as anti-capitalist, Kpopalypse will take your money so you can feel better about your existence.  This way, we can help each other.

K-pop did exist in the 80s but it wasn’t exactly “idol pop” back then, it was mostly more like trot (but a crap version).  Really not worth investigating in my opinion.

Thanks for reading!

Hi Kpopalypse!
I thought hardly whether to post this question as it tackles my personal life that I’m not that comfortable talking about but I need to let it out.
1. My father is an alcoholic. I’ve known it since the age of seven. As I am growing older I realise how much of a jerk he is to my poor mother. He doesn’t realize how much he hurts our whole family and at this point his case is that severe, he needs a therapy immediately. The problem is that he doesn’t want to. My question is: should we encourage him more, scare him that my mum would field the divorce report or just ignore his addiction (not the best idea but he gets violent when we talk about his issues)?
2. Due to a car accident I encoutered roughly one year ago I lost two front teeth. Because of the pandemic all the work with dentists to get denture stopped for four months. I still have to wait for 16 months untill I get it. While in public and speaking/opening my mouth, my loss is very noticable and I’ve received about a millionth stares so far. My confidence generally dropped a lot. I used to be social and pretty outgoing but now I get very anxious when out. All my classmates and everyone that sees me laughs at me and I can understand that but I want to be at least 15% confident as I was before the accident. How can I improve my confidence? I tried to not take it personally and just don’t give a fuck whatever anyone says but it isn’t working.
Thanks in advance!

Alcoholic father – I don’t think ignoring it is going to help.  However doing something about it is obviously also scary because of the potential for it to bring on more violence.  I have no experience to draw on in dealing with something like this (my father was a heavy drinker in his youth but gave up when he had children) so I’m not really sure how to advise you.  If I were your mother I’d be filing for divorce quicksmart though.  Whatever you can do to separate yourself from that shit will do wonders for your self-esteem and…

Confidence – anybody that laughs at you is being a cunt, really.  Of course that doesn’t mean you should get upset or tell them to stop or anything, that’ll probably just make them do it more.  It seems weird but having the no front teeth is already improving your confidence, because if you can withstand the slings and arrows from “friends” and continue to go about your daily thing then that’s a confidence-builder.  Just don’t withdraw or hide, keep being out there and in people’s faces.  I very rarely wear any headwear even though I have weird non-pattern alopecia baldness because – fuck it, everyone can suck my dick, you know?  If people underestimate me or look down on me because of it, that’s great – it just means that I’ll prove them wrong and soon they’ll be eating their own shit.  People underestimate me all the time because I look a bit strange and I’m not visibly outgoing or extroverted, but they soon learn.

1 – You say that Beyoncé ruined RnB even more than it already was. Do you feel the same with these girls?
Trivia: The smaller one will play Ariel in the next Disney live-action and some stupid white people were complaining about misrepresentation of the the ginger.
2 – I need some kpop videos with BDSM clothing thematic, for scientific reasons obviously. But I haven’t really found nothing else besides Rania – Dr. Feel Good. Do you know some others (boy groups are welcome too!) to help me?
3 – One of these days I watched Marilyn Manson – The Beautiful People and was kinda mesmerized with how the lyrics seems to be so much more applicable in 2020 than it was back when it was released (1996). What’s your opinion about the song and the lyrics? I personally wish someone would do something near that in k-pop for a change…
4 – When I was a kid in the 90’s, it was told on TV that Madonna’s American Life original music video were banned for various reasons (the one that doesn’t have the stupid flags’ chroma key). What do you think about the video per se? Here’s a link if you want to see it:
5 – Just want to thank you for your patience to answer all of us! Have a nice month, caonima!

R&B girls – they are better than Beyonshit.

BDSM – these sort of themes are subtle when they appear. 

For BDSM-inspired fashion try these:

For BDSM that’s less fashion-based but more as the general narrative theme:

“The Beautiful People” – I was never much of a fan of Marilyn Manson’s music, I always felt like it was a watered-down glam version of Ministry at the time.  However I do actually agree with a lot of his worldview!  It’s worth watching Michael Moore’s “Bowling For Columbine” (regardless of what you think about Michael Moore himself, or the stance on the topic presented) just for Marilyn Manson’s spot, frankly he steals the movie in his two allotted minutes.

“American Life” video – I like it, clever.  Of course banning things is stupid, but I can see why certain bothered people would want to ban it.

Thanks!

I think there is a girl group song in this song but the producers give all possible rap to make it manly

I can’t point it but the chorus sounds like a girl group song doesn’t it?

Moreover why my mindset is there is a certain melody/songs that attributed to certain male/female groups lol

Sorry to bother your day oppar

The chorus does actually remind me of a specific girl group k-pop song that uses almost exactly the same melody but I can’t remember which one.

Hi! I have a question about the bass instrument. I understand that the handle is longer than the guitar’s one to make lower notes. But I’m curious about the number of cords. I think usually it’s 4 but the new bassist of N.Flying has 5 cords. So why a guitar has more cords than a bass and what it changes?

FYI the “cords” are called “strings”.  It’s best not to refer to them as “cords” as this sounds the same as “chords” which is another word for playing more than one note at a time and so you end up saying things like “I played some chords on these cords” which is hella confusing.

The typical bass guitar formation of strings is four strings, usually tuned from low pitch to high, E A D G.  This is because the bass guitar was originally envisioned as an electric version of the double bass in the orchestra’s string section, which has exactly the same tuning.  Later on as music evolved some players wanted to go lower, so a 5th extra-low B string was added to some models.  There are also 6 string basses, but 4 strings is most common and in pop music 5 is actually also reasonably common.

Electric guitars usually have six strings, and these are higher in pitch.  The extra strings means more options when playing melody notes and chords, which is more important for an instrument that “sounds higher”.  Bass players tend to usually play one note at a time, whereas electric guitarists are often playing multiple notes at once.

Lately I’ve been listening to red velvet’s monster a lot but I only now realize it’s barely 3 min long, I never felt like it’s too short nor did I ever see anyone complain that it is. However, when I listen to dreamcatcher’s good night which is 2:54 min long, 4 sec less than monster, it feels like it needs at least one more chorus to really drive it home. How come some songs feel way longer while others need a bit more to feel complete?
Tnxx

That’s because the Dreamcatcher song is better.  Hahaha.  Actually that could be true, but it’s probably more to do with Red Velvet’s song having a more densely packed structure with more choruses in it – it exhausts the musical material quicker because there’s slightly less of it.

Twitter continue to make me sick. There are too many people who drank the Kool-Aid that you can’t be racist against Caucasians and that saying otherwise somehow negates the severity of centuries-long oppression of minorities. That illogic is depressing.

Anyone can be racist against anyone.  You could argue that racism against white people is somewhat more benign and harmless because white people have less reason to take it seriously given the history of white people globally and colonialism etc, and in a lot of cases I’d agree, but it’s still racism of a type, objectively speaking.  People on Twitter live in a fantasy land, most of them have never had a job – if they do they should try making some anti-white comments at work and see if other people don’t experience that as “workplace racism”.  People talk shit online all the time but in the real world it’s different.  It’s a similar argument to when someone says a bad song “isn’t music”, those people are equally wrong.  Of course it’s music – all songs are music, you could argue that it’s shitty music, and you may be right, but it’s technically still music, whether you know it or not, and whether you like it or not.

I came across this article about drag queen Miss Fame rejected an offer to be in a Justin Bieber music video because they only offered $500, and it made sense that she would be mad, but then I remembered what you wrote about music paying jack shit a lot of the time, and I was wondering what your experience with this kind of thing was. Is $500 really low, or is it somewhat standard for stuff like music video roles? Also, how much is exposure really worth to someone in the arts/entertainment field? (asking as someone who wants to maybe get into that field) Is she actually making a good move in rejecting the offer or not?

Also this is unrelated but you’ve also mentioned a couple of times how Love Story is the only good Taylor Swift song. I can’t seem to tell much of a difference between Love Story and her other music? Is there a specific reason Love Story is so standout to you?

This got really long, but thanks as always Kpopalypse oppar, for answering our questions!

Actually $500 is a lot, most music videos don’t offer anywhere near that much.  Unless we’re talking A-list stuff like er…. Justin Bieber.  She was right to turn that offer down, he was lowballing it.  Mind you, he did say “was wondering if you were in LA” probably realising that he’d have to up the price or that it simply wouldn’t be viable if she wasn’t.  He was hoping she was just around the corner lol.  Of course Justin probably doesn’t know that she would possibly spend $500 for a video shoot on styling alone.  I don’t think he was deliberately being a dick, I just think he’s equal parts ignorant and hopeful, which isn’t a crime or anything. 

Oh my god how many times are people going to ask me about “Love Story”, damn.  Pretty sure if you search back through the QRIMOLEs I already answered this one.

So, I stumbled upon this song  and noticed it reminded me a bunch of Mamamoo’s Egotistic. Seems like the Spanish song was published just some months earlier, and Egotistic contains the ‘lyrics’ “bicho malo” among all the Konglish. From the perspective of a professional, what do you think happened – is it likely Egotistic is a semi-obscure soundalike, or are the two different enough that some freaky luck could technically result in them having so many similarities?

Honestly this type of sound is so absolutely generic right now and so absolutely everywhere right now, that there’s probably 50 more songs that sound almost exactly like these two as well.  If anything that’s an underestimation.  Not plagiarism or even deliberate soundalike on anyone’s part, just two boring songs by two boring songwriters following the same boring trend in the same boring way.

does it bother you that you get so many questions treating you as an agony aunt (or whatever the male equivalent might be… unrest uncle?)? and do you think it’s concerning that a presumably far younger audience made mostly of young women are so willing to turn to strange older men for deeply personal advice?
i’m also curious… are you familiar with the concept of parasocial relationships and have you written (or pondered) about how companies exploit vulnerable people in need of emotional support, through the use of marketing and the illusion of meaningful connection? they do it through fancafe, social media accounts, fansigns, and vague posturing about how important each individual fan is to their idols, probably much more i haven’t listed here for brevity’s sake.
looping back to my initial query have you noticed your readers, whether you encouraged them intentionally or not, seem to have formed a one-sided connection with you where they’re more invested in you than you are with them?

Unrest Uncle – lol – I wish I had a Kpopalypse when I was growing up that I could ask questions to anonymously.  I was a confused nerdy dweeby antisocial unpleasant creepy little fuck when I was a young teenager and the wisdom of someone older and wiser might have snapped me out of my bullshit a lot earlier than I eventually grew out of it.  So I’m happy to “pay it forward” and help others in this way.  I don’t think the age or gender of those asking questions is a concern and it’s really not something I think about.  I think getting an objective outsider opinion on a personal situation is a good thing for anybody of any age or gender, because when you’re in a personal situation it can be tough and hard to “see the forest for the trees” – an outsider has an outside perspective and might be more impartial, or they might not but at least it’s another perspective that you can bounce your own off of.  Obviously anyone receiving answers from me needs to understand that I’m an older guy and should put the answers in that context.  My answers on personal situations are quite serious in intent – I’m not specifically soliciting inappropriate questions, or giving answers that I feel are inappropriate, just ones that are coloured by my worldview and opinions, which is presumably what people want to read or they wouldn’t be asking me these things.

I haven’t really noticed too many people forming parasocial relationships with me.  I do my best on my blog to encourage critical thinking and critical distance, and I think that the people who read it and occasionally ask questions generally understand the importance of this message.  I could be wrong of course and maybe there’s some obsessive fans out there, I would encourage them to continue to read my writing and be fans but also to read my writing on fandoms and redirect those obsessions about me to their own lives in a more healthy way.  I’m just some guy.

I’m not really familiar enough with the operation of fancafes to comment on how much they exploit parasocial relationships, although the questions that AustralianSana uncovered on a BTS “official survey” a while back were interesting.  They were asking stuff like “how often do you feel depressed” and “how do you see yourself/how do you think others see you” etc, perhaps as a way to mine those emotional hooks later for profit.  Honestly disturbing.

How much value do you place on production in terms of overall song quality? You’ve praised producers/production on certain tracks but criticised the song itself which I think is interesting and I’d love to know if there are any kpop producers you particularly rate or hate. Also, what do you think are the signifiers of “good production” (other than a track not obviously sounding like ass, or have I just answered my own question)?

I don’t really “follow” producers and the only reason why I know who produces certain tracks is because my readers keep telling me.  In k-pop the producer is often also the songwriter so the two are often intertwined, it can be hard to separate “songwriting” from “production” absolutely.  However in terms of general quality standard for music production, k-pop generally always gets it right, it’s very very rare to hear “badly produced” k-pop, but much more common to hear a song that is just bland and boring.  You essentially did answer your own question – “good production” basically means that everything can be heard clearly, that it sounds good on all types of speaker systems, and that it’ll sound of comparable quality to other sounds just on a sonic level when played back to back with them on radio or TV etc.

Does this NCT song MRS

Here’s a cool trick:

  • Go to my search bar
  • Type in the song name
  • Click on the first roundup you see
  • Search for the song
  • Read wot I thought
  • Know stuff

Hi Kpopalypse Oppa I hope you’re doing well and you’re safe. I have two questions and I hope you can answer them

1) This whole Ghislaine Maxwell/ Jeffrey Epstein thing has me wondering about pedophilia in the kpop industry. How rampant would it be?

2) I don’t know if you’ve heard about the Free Britney movement.. she’s basically under conservator-ship under her father against her wishes and has little to no freedom in both her personal and private life. Considering the fact that she is also a child star, her story reminds me of the fact that most people, especially child stars are highly exploited by their family. How common would situations like this be in kpop?

You know that many of the victims of Burning Sun were underage, yeah?  The saddest thing about Burning Sun is that’s just one club.  How many clubs do you think there are in Korea where that type of shit, or worse, goes on, on a regular basis?  Nice guess but your number was too low.  Guess again and double your answer.  Still too low.  Be careful out there.

I’m aware of “Free Britney”.  Not sure if her situation is really comparable to k-pop situations where it’s generally the agency rather than the family who has the hooks in deep.  Families as a general rule don’t push their kids into k-pop because artistic fields are such a roll of the dice, in Asia you’re more likely to experience deep parental pressure to become a doctor, lawyer or accountant.  Most kids who follow their k-pop dreams are usually doing it in spite of parental wishes, or at least with their cautious encouragement.  The very, very few who make really good money probably have their parents on side by that point.  Britney type situations I think would be rare (not impossible, but highly unusual).

Hi, hope you’re well. I have a question regarding making music. I got into music at a pretty young age (I started by learning the keyboard) and I was pretty crazy about it until I had to learn theory in school and my music teacher was shitty to me (there was a lot of drama) and I decided to quit music class and the band. Since then, I haven’t focused on learning anything music- related expect occasionally messing around on Audacity and stuff but that was around 4 years ago. Recently I graduated from university (I am close to my mid-20s now) and I’m at a point in my life where I have to make some choices about the future and I want to try with music again but everytime I look at my keyboard or guitar (which I didn’t have the heart to give away) I get a foreboding feeling. Do you think it’s too late for me now? Please advice and thank you for letting me vent.

Not too late.  If you started young those skills are still buried in there somewhere.  Even if you didn’t start young, do it anyway, fuck it.  The sooner you start, the better you’ll feel.  You don’t have to be a genius for it to be worthwhile, just do a little bit of something cool each day and you’ll get better.  Measure yourself only against your own progress.  Here’s some music teaching to inspire you that another QRIMOLE asker linked:

Oppa I am little sad and bitter. 😦 Long story short in my previous (also horrible) job I met and befriended two women and I naively thought despite some of our differences that our difficult times together during work made us more united or whatever. After we all got out of this job we slowly driffted apart, that’s alright everyone has their own life and journey but what hurt me is that when I met them again one month ago I realised that we didn’t have the supporting friendship I thought we had. At some point during our chit chat they began out of nowhere to criticise a lot of my life desicisions. I’m not perfect and I have made mistakes but so did they, and more importantly I never asked for their help or borrowed money, so what the hell? I never thought that as a friend it’s okay to do that, so why did they?I guess since they are older than me they thought they have more life experience than me, bullshit. I may be younger than them and never been in a relationship before but at least I know that marrying someone who insults me and treats me like a maid isn’t the wisest decision.They honestly suggested that I need a man to help me and encourage me to become better.
I am better alone and broke thanks. After that we completely stoped talking and recently I became aware that they continue to hang out with our previous supervisor even though she was an absolute nightmare ( im not kidding ,she loved to say we were family so she could easily emotionally abuse us and many other things, fuck her) all of us talked shit about her. But in the end they chose to became best buddies with her and shit on me. They will 100% gossip about me with her and it annoys me.I didn’t open up to them so they can judge me along with someone I deeply despise.There are many other details and things that I am not writing because if I am being honest it all boils down to this: I shared moments of vulnerability with the wrong people. It’s not exactly the first time but considering other factors it annoys me the most. At least I learned some life lessons? Be more careful with your words and who to trust. Trust your instict .( i didn’t have a good feeling about them at the beginning) It’s essential for my well being to build boundaries and protect them . (i still struggle with this since i don’t have no idea how to build them :/) So yeah life sucks , I am sad,confused, hurt ,scared and in a dire need of a therapist.

P.S. What I am going to do if in the future I share vulnerable moments with a romantic partner, who will turn out to be an asshole? Do people as they grow up avoid opening up about personal issues to their friends and partners?

This is a risk for any personal relationship, that someone will lack character, and there will always be this factor to consider when getting to know someone.  I would say the best way about it is don’t reveal very personal things or overshare until a large amount of time has passed and you have a very good character profile of the person.  If someone is actually a cunt they will eventually reveal themselves in time, that sort of thing can be hidden for a while but not forever, and having been through your most recent experience you know a little bit more now than you did before about what to look for.  Not that all cunts are the same of course, but experience is a good teacher.  What you’ve just gone through is actually great because it now increases your chances of detecting if any future romantic partner is likely to be an asshole before you go ahead and make any big commitments to them.

Can you make appreciation post for Gfriend’s Apple because finally they look attractive?

no u

I suspect if we ever met you would hate me almost as much as I hate k-pop youtube channels, which leads nicely into one of my questions about this k-pop bullshit which is: Why does every k-pop youtube channel have to have some lame-ass disclaimer before they say anything?
I know, I know, the “fandoms will hate on me if I don’t” but most of these people use that stupid robot voice anyway and have names like taekupxoxo (i apologize to whoever is using that name if it’s a real one) so why do they give a shit if some fourteen year old dweeb who isn’t goth because goth died ~2006 and will never know who they really are posts a mean comment on their youtube?
following that up, what is it with all these little shits and their obsession with pretending online hate is anything but an exercise in emotional masturbation? and i mean that for both sides. no one sits around reading hate comments unless they want to throw a pity-party and no one harms themselves over hate comments unless they were already crazier than a shit-house rat.
not that hate comments are good or right, or that we should convince the mentally-ill to take the lead-pill, but i feel like the whole “they died because you said they were a slut for hugging Hung-Lo from V4GGOT” is really just a misdirection from the real issue which is that being an idol is a ridiculously difficult job for shit wages that being entertainment, naturally attracts mentally weak people who arent even prepared for easy jobs.
but i digress.
back to the original point: I saw a k-pop youtube video the other day (I like to engage in intellectual self-flagellation, blame the Catholicism) that had a literal 3 minute disclaimer before they gave probably the least controversial opinion on k-pop i can imagine hearing. its like they know the hate they so dearly desire isn’t coming because their bland opinions are boring as fuck, but they want to pretend it would come, so they put the disclaimer up anyway…
I am pretty much as far away from the average k-pop fan imaginable, so maybe that’s why im confused but it just seems like the whole world has lost its balls. whining about being a victim because you said some real shit is already kinda pussy behavior, but whining about being a victim when no one is even fucking victimizing you because you are regurgitated the prevailing mantra they all agree with anyway is a whole new level of vaginal discharge that i can’t even begin to describe.
i mean, i think you (the literal you, as in you: kpopaplypse) are out of your fucking mind with 99% of the shit you say, and you’re obviously an absolute degenerate waste of human flesh, but at least you don’t give a shit if some fucking 30-year old loser who unironically likes chinese products made for 13 year old queers thinks you should shape the fuck up and stop being such a disgusting, God-forsaken mess. so cheers to you for that mate; you’ve managed to become the only person in the entire kpop world with a microphone that i don’t have the overpowering urge to bully. all these other kids make me want to stuff them in a locker and steal their fucking lunch money.
on the final side note, why the fuck did I just write all of this shit to someone who 1) doesn’t care what I have to say, 2) won’t post it anyway, 3) thinks I’m a fucking idiot, and 4) actually has the fucking gall to say that t-ara is better than red velvet?
fucking lonely i guess.
or maybe just bored.
peace out yo.

A lot of assumptions here, but they’re funny assumptions so I’ll let it slide heh

Kids like to bully each other especially online and I think young people creating k-pop content are acutely aware of that, see all the dogpiling everyone else is doing and are just trying to protect themselves from being the next target.  It’s all for nothing of course, because bullies will always find a way to target someone, look at how AustralianSana and OnThisDayInKpop were targeted over literally nothing at all.  People basically just twisted their words to make shit up about them, and they’ll do it to some YouTubing kid too, or whoever else they want.  The best solution to this is obviously not tons of disclaimers and pre-apologies, but telling these cunts to eat a dick.

I’d be interested to know the 1% of the shit I say that you think is actually sane.  Maybe this answer is it.

i’m that asshole that just sent you the rant about kpop youtube videos. anyway I was wondering if you knew the etymology of the word apocalypse? it’s an interesting word, and you’re a genius for using it.
peace out yo

I don’t even know the etymology of the word etymology.  “Kpopalypse” was a word that just came out of my ass one day when I was talking to someone at my  radio station, I was using it to describe the large volume of k-pop that I was burning into their MP3 library.  Then I thought “that’s be a cool name for a radio show”.  Then I thought “hang on, we don’t actually HAVE a k-pop radio show, maybe I could start one up…” – that spur-of-the-moment thought then led into 8 years of weekly k-pop radio DJing, plus this blog.  You’re welcome.

I just want to introduce you & fellow caonimas some kpop covers of this drummer because they sound so so good. I wish Dreamcatcher used this heavier style of drum. What do you think of his drum covers? Does he help raise your favorability of the songs? I listen to his cover than original songs 😀 . They are so satisfying. I don’t know how to explain my feeling.

He rarely does kpop covers. So, I am seeking fellow caonimas help to watch & comment & like & request some covers. Hoping he did more when he saw the youtube views.

Gfriend – Sunrise
Dreamcatcher – Good Night 
Dreamcatcher – Fullmoon
Gfriend – Time for the Moonlight
Chungha – Gotta Go
Twice – What is Love
Twice – Heartshaker 
Mamamoo – Hip
IOI – Very Very Very

He’s at his best when he’s doing a song that actually suits his style of drumming – Dreamcatcher is the obvious best fit as that’s more or less semi-metal anyway.  He’s not such a good fit for Gfriend, Twice etc because I think he overextends, inserting random double-kicks and fancy off-time fills just because he can is one of my pet hates with drummers in general, and of course no amount of great drumming can save “Gotta Go” which is trash through and through, in any musical language.  Can’t deny the great drumming technique though.  I actually enjoy him playing more in his actual metal band’s songs.  I enjoy watching Junna even more though.

Do you and Stiglitz approve this Björk’s label YouTube Channel ultra-nugu dance tutorial? I personally found it hard (I really suck at anything physical). Am I a dumbass?

The Supremes outsold.

Can you technically explain the musical similarities between AOA’s “Excuse Me” and The Cardigans’ “Lovefool”? I can hear them but I just don’t have the vocabulary to point them out. However, I don’t hear much of “Wonder Boy” in John Paul Young’s “Love is the Air”. Maybe the ever-ascending strings or something?

The similarity is texturally there’s some similarities in the way they’ve mixed instruments, and the melodic contour of the hooks in both songs is very similar, the “love me, love me” in The Cardigans matches the “scuse me, scuse me” in AOA’s song almost exactly.

The similaries with these two songs are more broad and basically amounts to “genre similarity”, both are basically disco songs with heavy orchestration that builds gradually and is responsible for carrying most of the hook material rather than the actual vocals.  It’s notable because there aren’t very many of these type of songs in k-pop in general.  You have to disregard the vocals to hear the similarity, that’s probably why you’re registering it in AOA’s case but not in After School Blue’s case. 

Thoughts on PC Music and other hyperpop?

I’m too busy following k-pop to really even be able to say much about this.  Sorry.

hi kpopalypse. i’ve been avidly reading your blog for a few months now and i just want to thank you for keeping me sane when everyone else online is making me feel crazy. case in point: the Jimin bullying scandal. i feel sad for the people involved because i know it was the industry that pushed them to that point, but then i go online and see everyone using it as an excuse to descend on Jimin like vultures. they are bullies. worse, they are self-righteous bullies. it’s so disappointing. i thought we had collectively advanced past cheering at the gallows, but apparently the internet has provided us a new way to be entertained by (and even participate in! how fun) the destruction of someone’s life.
so it’s a breath of fresh air when i can go to your blog/twitter and see you also disgusted with this behavior. i wish more people felt comfortable speaking up about it, but it’s scary to face a mob. yours is one of the only voices i can find in the kpop world with any rationality or even true compassion for idols.
what i’m trying to figure out is–how do so many people feel so justified in mass-cyberbullying? maybe you have some thoughts on this. also, should twitter be deleted because i’m kinda liking that option lately.

A lot of people didn’t like what I said about Jimin but too bad, sucks to be them.  Certainly went down like a lead balloon on Asian junkie etc.  The fact is nobody really cares about who bullied who, because bullying happens in all these groups, and everybody knows it, yet people still support them all and nobody’s putting pressure on anyone to clean up their act in any real way.  They just want to turn up after the fact so they can say “burn the witch” and then stroke themselves off about how they’re on the “good side”.  I don’t think turning up to someone’s execution with a placard saying “die, bitch” makes anybody “more moral and righteous” but that’s how the Internet is now, the side-effect of the new global village is village mob mentality.  I do far more to prevent bullying than any of these witch-hunting “oh my god Kpopalypse is so problematic why can’t he just say fuck Jimin” clowns by talking to ex-idols and highlighting the toxic environments and horrible management styles that foster these kind of situations in the first place.  Picking up a piece of shit once it hits the ocean achieves nothing for water quality, you’ve got to capture that turd when it’s at the source.

What is Bjork’s best album and why is it Post?

Also, do you like Alanis Morissette’s music?

Homogenic > Post.  Don’t let poets lie to you.

Never really liked Alanis Morissette.  She was flogged to death here on radio in the 90s and I never saw the appeal.

Is there any objective causal link at all between ‘bad music’ and a person’s visceral reaction to it? Or why certain people are more predisposed to like ‘bad music’ more often? Why are some ‘bad music’ perceptibly worse than others regarding technical/songwriting merits? Examples include trap, tropslop, or Whitney Houston (lol). Personally, the local music in my country, the Philippines, make me feel like my brain cell count is depleting when I try to actively listen to them. Is that just mere snobbery? Or a mix of several other psychological/physiological/societal/what-the-fuck-ever factors? Even most Korean rap and bad K-pop songs such as Twice’s “Cheer Up”, Red Velvet’s “Zimzalabim”, etc. don’t make me feel as dejected as when I hear (most) local rap music or Western pop.

I take a lot of shit when I hear “Zimzalabim” and honestly yes that song does stink, but the generic western R&B and tropical pop music that I hear at my gym I find to be almost universally far worse.  Everything is relative.  Also with music culture and upbringing plays a massive role in determining what we like, and everyone processes music differently as a result.  Yes there are some common elements but there are more points of difference, and that’s why it’s so hard to be successful at pop music.  That’s also why when people are successful, they tend to not change the formula too much going forward – it’s so hard to hit on stuff that people actually like in the first place that any change can be a real risk, and when there’s careers and livelihoods riding on the success of the next big thing, a safe bet is really appealing.  That’s why the last three Blackpink songs have sounded basically the same.

Is perfect pitch an innate trait, or can it be acquired? Thank you 🙂

Innate as far as I can tell, unless you start basically in the womb.  Don’t even bother – perfect pitch is an overhyped waste of time anyway.  Relative pitch can be learned easily however, and is the more valuable skill.  If you have good relative pitch, perfect pitch actually becomes completely useless, because someone with good relative pitch and knowledge of their own vocal range can use their own voice as a reference point, and one reference point is all you need to determine any other pitch.  For instance, if I figure out that E3 is the lowest note I can sing comfortably without losing the note completely, then I just try and sing the lowest note I can – and I now know that’s E3.  Now with good relative pitch skills I can compare any other note to that note and figure out what it is easily enough.

You always say that Kpop is a copyist industry. Which is evident when you look at all these companies trying (and failing) to follow BTS’s formula. BTS’s success is objectively quite hard to replicate, since the possibility of any other company having the right combination of personnel is close to zero. But, that doesn’t stop the Kpop companies from trying.
Given this tendency, I really want to know why does no-one even bother to imitate LOEN’s formula for iu: Find a cute girl, make her sing (with high-pitched aegyo voice) songs that will pander to uncle fans. Seems well worth the effort if you look at the result, so why don’t the companies give it a try? (and why didn’t they give it a try all these tears?) Is it because having a soloist is not as profitable as it looks?

They did try.  I guess you don’t remember Juniel, who was FNC Entertainment’s clone of early IU right down to the cheaply “personalised” acoustic guitar:

There were other female soloists trying to hit on this formula too, like Oh!nle (later renamed as “To-day”):

It wasn’t just nugus trying this however – SM even tried, with the slightly tougher-sounding J.min:

Nobody remembers these people much now, and that’s why companies don’t do it much.  What they generally worked out is that it’s easier to launch a solo career in Korea if someone’s been in a group first, because they already have that brand value from the group attached to them.  So most solo stuff you see now is people who used to be in big groups.  There probably will be at some point another IU or similar, but what she has seems to be a real niche.

Hello! Hope you’re doing well. Have you listened to rave/jungle music and if so, what do you think about it?

I didn’t mind The Prodigy back in the day but generally I wasn’t that interested in this style, and rave/jungle-heads were all boring people who took too much ecstasy.

I’ve begun to worry about my best friend.

In the past year or so, she’s been showing signs of becoming radicalized by the right-wing. I go to her Twitter and it’s mostly just her degrading Islam, making racist jabs at black people and Asians, refusing to admit that conservative leaders might be wrong (we’re not Americans fyi, she’s spewed hate on them too) and retweeting propaganda

I’ve called her out on it a few times and each time she insists she’s not an extremist, she’s just protective of her religion & doesn’t want to hear slander against her faith. I tell her that the current ruling party won’t spare women once they’re done stripping rights from other minorities, but she refuses to listen, claiming that she’s been “bullied by toxic commie leftists” and other bullshit.

She’s had a turbulent life struggling with mental illness and I suspect that moving from our more liberal city to a more conservative town may have been a catalyst in her descent – she found some comfort in religion and ended up falling for a girl who is equally mentally ill and also a right-winger, and they both drag each other down. I suspect the Right-wing also give her more blind validation instead of calling her out on her bullshit which is why she sticks to them

I don’t really know what to do here. I don’t want to cut her off entirely because:
1) That’ll only push her in further with her new RW clique & further her belief that she’s being falsely prosecuted for her faith,
2) I’m really the only good friend she has left (online right-wing incels barely count I think)

But it’s getting increasingly hard to endure talking to her despite us being physically apart. She’s dropped out of college 3 times already and hasn’t finished her degree despite enrolling 6 years ago, but somehow finds the time to spew propaganda online. I’m just saddened at how much she’s changed for the worse.

People tend to get involved in groups and beliefs like that not so much for the beliefs themselves, but for the sense of community that they bring.  There’s absolutely no logic to some of this stuff (I don’t know her faith but religious “love thy neighbour”, “be kind” and “be charitable” values are absolutely left-wing values that exist across the board of all major religions) but it’s not really about logic anyway, it’s about the connections that people make with each other.  So the key element here is to not shut her out but to try and introduce her to other communities.  Make time to talk to her, offline, about stuff that isn’t political, maybe try to introduce her to some cool stuff she’d be into and just have fun, rekindle the friendship in real-time.  People lose their commitment to toxic online communities when they have real-world experience that doesn’t match up to the nonsense they’re exposed to online, and when they have examples in front of their faces about how things aren’t really as extreme as they seem inside their head.

In 0:21 of Shinee’s Sherlock there’s this cool kettle whistle (don’t really know what it is exactly) sound in the backings that I really like. Could you recommend me some good songs that also have similar screechy, abrasive sounds? For me, it has a similar appeal to the sounds that can be heard in a lot of Public Enemy’s stuff like Terminator X to the Edge of Panic and Rebel without a pause or the wailing sirens in Lost At Birth. Is there a genre/subgenre for this kind of sound?

I think you’ve already found all the best examples on your own!  Late 80s/early 90s rap is filled with this sort of stuff as Public Enemy were very influential in bringing “sound collage” to the forefront of popular music textures.  There’s no real genre name for this technique.

Hello! I have an overnight job in the mental health field that starts at 11 PM. My first shift of the week is Monday night, which for me is usually when you post your roundups. For some reason, your half-assed comments help me to loosen up before work, so I always have something to look forward to. I’ve been having an especially rough week because of the 4th of July is when my dad died a couple years back…and it’s not easy when everyone else is hosting a party. So your latest roundup made me smile for the first time in a couple days. Anyways, does Kim Lip mrs?

Wouldn’t kick her out of bed if I woke up with her after a night where I didn’t remember anything other than vodka shots at the Blockberry dorms, but Vivi > Yves > Chuu > the others

Hi Kpopalypse,

Well, assuming the girls from Kaachi still have some sense of self-preservation, I don’t see a reason they would like to associate themselves with someone like you XD Come to think of it, I actually found Kim Nayoon to be very brave to do an interview with you, considering your reputation. Wouldn’t she afraid her company would screw her up badly for exposing the dirty laundry of the industry, or she’s just betting that her management won’t know enough English to understand what you wrote?

Actually, I think it’s more accurate to say you roast people as naturally as you breath 🤣 Although I also swear like a sailor, I still find roasting people to be a fun activity to do, particularly in situations I cannot swear (e.g. in school or at work). That doesn’t mean I 100% won’t do it though – I actually once muttered the Cantonese equivalent of caonima in front of a teacher during middle school, and guess what, she heard it.

All the jokes aside, I still found Sana’s (somewhat) gay behavior to be problematic. Even as a male once, if she ever does something like that to me, I would either turn away and run like hell, or punch her right in the face in self-defense, or maybe both. And let’s be honest here: if she is a guy, she would definitely be eating royal meals* for what she did. Granted, she’s a Japanese, but since Japan still has an emperor, she’s still being fed at His Majesty’s pleasure if she goes to jail. 🙃

I’m perfectly aware that K-pop is still a form of art (even though it’s heavily manufactured and their products resemble more of an software engineering project than an artistic one), and when I say “k-pop is more engineering than art”, I literally mean it’s an “engineered art” – art with lots of engineering characteristics. I apologize if I accidentally made the implication that K-pop isn’t art. It is and I’m not planning to dispute it.

Though I’m in no position to comment the musical merits of K-pop (I failed my music class all the way from elementary school to middle school, until I moved to Canada for high school – which I wan no longer being forced to take music classes), I don’t think it’s “lower quality art” due to the process. Rather I would say it’s quality can be best described as “just barely good enough”. In my academic career, my professors always told us when designing a piece of software or any system, make sure it just do exactly what it says on the requirements, nothing more, nothing less. I think it’s also the mindset most K-pop agencies have – their music’s quality would neither be superb nor dreadful, but most of the population would found it acceptable.

Regarding “gay fan service” in K-pop, I would suggest it’s not “wishful thinking”, but a brilliantly conceived marketing technique to maintain/increase customer loyalty. I used to knew a couple diehard fans (mostly females, and I happened the only male in that community) of these sort of stuff, and believe it or not, they sincerely thought their imaginary couple is real (i.e. they’re actually dating and doing things couples would do, like having sex), to the point I once wondered if their idols actually dated/married a guy, would they hire someone to kill that gentleman?

Although in hindsight I found those people to be quite bloody stupid (I’m not trying to imply they’re bad people, it’s not the case), I must admit even today I still enjoy imagining girls from Twice are dating each other and doing things couples would do, like having sex. Also, when I was doing some research about how men and women think about lesbian porn for the sake of this reply, I stumbled upon two very interesting articles.

Therefore, I would like to offer the following conjecture: The K-pop agencies know that a lot of K-pop fans love to imagine girls having romantic relationships to other girls, and exploits it to their advantage. You might argue that “since homosexuality is still a taboo in South Korea and much of the Asia, how would they torpedo their careers like that?” Well, since they neither officially confirm nor deny the girls are homosexuals, it leaves a huge grey area, and their gay behavior can be either interpreted as “good friends teasing each other” or “the girls are secretly dating each other”, whichever you prefer. It’s all about plausible deniability, ladies and gentlemen. To illustrate my point, I suggest you take a look at Red Velvet’s “Monster“, and the comment section:

Oh…… is that mean you studied audio engineering at a community college of sorts?

* That’s a Hong Kong slang for being imprisoned, as during the British colonial times, the Queen of England was *technically* the one who call the shots and the head of the civil service (which led to her being nicknamed as “The Lady Boss” by Hongkongers), thus all prisoners were, in effect, being fed at Her Majesty’s pleasure.

This is a really hard comment for me to reply to as you’re replying to individual bits of my last QRIMOLE and trying to have a conversation about eight different things at once, which is totally confusing.  I’ll do my best.

Kim Nayoon was happy to talk to me because she wanted to highlight mental health issues in the k-pop industry and so do I.  Getting back to Jimin again, everyone wants to complain about her but who is really ready to put their foot forward and reveal how much the welfare of trainees is neglected and how toxic environments are left to fester because nobody in management cares about anything except the money?  Instead of just cancelling people in a social media circle-jerk, why not actually do something to highlight the real issues underpinning the whole mess and put some content out there which can open people’s eyes up and hopefully generate some real positive change.  Of course Kim Nayoon is brave, that’s because she’s a kickass girl who has been through a lot of bullshit.  Sometimes one’s sense of morals in real terms (rather than fake cancel-culture bullshit) is the most important thing.  We need more brave people like her.  Kaachi pussied out and it’s no surprise. most people do and I get why.  I don’t judge people for not having courage, I just offer an opportunity for the bravest ones to educate and inform others.

As a straight man, although I like it that lesbian porn exists, I find it to be mostly boring as shit to watch.  Although I’m aware that a lot of it is supposedly created for the “male gaze” rather than actual lesbians, when I watch even the most straight-male-friendly lesbian porn I tend to want to mentally put myself “in the scene” and if the scene involves only two (or more) women and no men, then I’m not really “there” even on a fantasy level, so I find that difficult to be aroused by.  It’s not a turn-off, it’s just not that interesting compared to SSNI-747.  I realise that I’m probably in the minority of men who think this, I’ve never actually seen any other men talk about this at all, only about how they like lesbian porn so very much (snore).  I actually wish that more lesbian-porn was lesbian-friendly and catered more to what lesbians really would like to see (whatever that happens to be), because lesbians deserve good porn just like we all do.  I think your theories on lesbian fanservce are valid and it would be good to see them tested “in the field”.

I studied audio engineering at what was at that time called the School Of Audio Engineering, which was the only place in Australia at that time where you could actually get a technical audio engineering qualification.  These days there are probably more options.

Heyo kpopalypse, one of your many lesbian rally, hope you’re well. I’m in a bit of a stitch right now and I really need a cool, rational opinion on the situation, which you seem to give pretty well. I’m a teenager with no meaningful adult guidance, hence the flocking to a random internet person.
The thing is, I’m a minor who’s gay in a third world country. I also have just gone into recovery for anorexia, depression and anxiety. My family is pretty religious but my older sister found out about my girlfriend (who i’ve been with for four years). She accepted me but said I need to break up with her because she has the same struggles with mental health for me and that i am too immature to understand non platonic relationships (im seventeen.) Because of quarantine, i was only keeping up with her online (we arent in an online relationship) but my sister made me deactivate my instagram after all of this went down.
On one hand, my girlfriend is very very important for me, one of the main reasons I went into recovery, someone who has stopped me from ending my life, etc etc. She’s also a childhood friend of mine who I dont want to break up with at all. On the other hand, my sister has a point when she says im in danger by being in a relationship with her, if my parents find out my life is over, etc etc. I’m caught in between letting go of my biggest push to live and my safety, what do I do?

Now here’s a real question. 

A lot of westerners who are a bit sheltered in the ways of the world often think “people who are gay are just choosing that for attention” but the proof that gayness is a very real sexual preference is that there’s a lot of countries around the world where people find out they’re gay and their first reaction is “oh fucking god nooooooooooo” because they know that following their sexual desire means complete family rejection, constant threat of being fag-bashed, and in some cases even legal punishment and execution, yet they can’t “change back” even if they may desperately want to and doing so would literally solve all their problems.  These people are risking everything and want as little attention to their gayness as possible!  The only reason why they sometimes go on marches is to try and get laws changed and better their living conditions so they don’t have to live in constant fear of being killed, and they do that at massive risk – remember that Mardi Gras in many cities around the world were actually originally protest rallies, and just evolved into parades as the official government view on gayness in those countries gradually softened.

If you’re anything but straight, you’re always going to be “on the outside” of any sort of society, and in an ultra-conservative third-world country this is even more the case.  I don’t know how extreme your country is, but to be on the safe side I’m going to assume that it’s very extreme and one of those countries where gay people get stoned to death and thrown off tall buildings.  Yes you’re probably in a lot of danger and there’s also the parental factor as well.  How you choose to engage with that is up to you and I’m really in no position to advise you on what the best course of action is, because things can go really surprisingly well or they can go disastrously wrong and I’ve seen plenty of both.  It’s easy to say “come out, fuck it” but what if you lose your family, or the law get called?  It’s also easy for me to say “don’t see that girl again, play it safe” but who am I to tell you that you can’t live your life the way you want?  What I will say though is this – you’re not alone, there’s a ton of people in your country who are going through very similar shit.  I would start trying to connect with some of them as they will probably have some really good strategies for how to handle this type of situation, as they’ve probably all been through something similar.  A support network can be a real lifeline that can get you through the hard times, you might be able to get assistance in all sorts of ways even if the worst does happen.  Be careful though – in countries that are very anti-gay, there are people and even whole organisations out there who will pose as support groups but are actually connected to the local anti-gay authorities, or to hate groups.  So be very careful and do diligent, exhaustive research before taking any steps at all, and have the utmost vigilance about privacy and security of information, be very cautious and only share the bare minimum of information possible to get the help that you need.  I can’t overemphasise this enough.  If you can navigate that, you should be able to connect with the right people for help.  Good luck!

Idk why but whenever I listen to KARA’s excellent “Wanna” () I’m always reminded of Girls Aloud’s “Sound of the Underground” – like something about them sounds similar, do you hear it too?

It’s mainly just a very similar tempo and song structure.

I was wondering about how would your journalist ethics work in this particular situation, let’s say that that girl from aoa who exposed the whole bullying thing reached you wanting to do an Interview, would you accept it, or would you decline due to the exposition or due to her current mental state, harming herself and that maybe she wouldnt be in the right mind to do an kpopalypse Interview, exposing truths amd whatsoever.and, on the other hand, if it we’re the other girl, jimin, wanting to give you her version, would you allow yourself into that situation? How would you deal with those two hypothetic scenarios?

Well I’m hardly a “journalist” but for me this is a 100% no-brainer: I’d interview them both without any hesitation.  Regardless of my or anyone else’s opinions on them or what they did, they both have insider points of view that are rarely ever expressed and which I think would be immensely valuable for people to read about and learn from.  A double-whammy Jimin/Mina interview in my opinion would be absolutely fantastic because it would blow wide open the actual real fucking issues that nobody wants to address – how the fuck did that situation actually develop and the label let it linger for so long?  What kind of dynamics are involved that allow bullying to continue unchecked?  How could similar situations be stopped in the future?  What kind of controls need to be in place, either voluntarily or via legal channels, and can people be trusted to enact those controls?  All real questions that people are too pussy to answer.

Hi, you usually say that when our faves, especially if the are from a well known company, are not getting releases all the time, is because they dont need it, meaning that they already reached the cfs they wanted or whatever, so, does that means that, in your opinion, lee hi now is actually swimming in money, or is it the opposite, that she’s not getting releases because she’s she wasn’t generating cf responses?

The latter, I think YG wasn’t pushing her because she wasn’t considered that marketable.  I think they took a look at her album project, assessed the marketability of her vs Blackpink and decided that Lee Hi wasn’t going to make as much return on investment, so why invest.  This ties into the IU question from earlier and it’s why you don’t see huge investments in many solo artists unless they’re closely connected to a group or some other media entity (like a popular TV show).  It’s all about who you can sell easier.

Kpopalypse Oppar! Now that Jimin has officially left AOA, no one of the original lineup is still there. Right? At least I think so? Groups with constantly changing lineup confuse the heck out of me.

Me too – I’m still trying to figure out who’s left in Momoland.

Hi oppar, hope you’re doing well.

I’ve spent the last 3.5 months locked in quarantine with just my mother (my brother moved out to another country 2 years ago & my father has been stuck in another city where he was before lockdowns began). It’s been pretty great with just me and her because we’ve always had a good relationship, but recently I’ve begun to feel extremely incompetent.

My father, to put it simply, is an alcoholic cunt who treated my mother like shit all through their marriage. He’s the kind of cunt to twist whatever anyone says into something malicious and act like a victim who the world is against. He is deeply insecure at how little he has achieved or grown as a person, yet refuses to do anything to improve himself. When he married my mother she was young, pretty and naive, and when she grew into a mature independent woman and surpassed his abilities he’s resented her for it & always tried to force her into submission. Me and my brother see through his bullshit and have cut off all contact with him, but my mother still cannot.
She’s too beaten down to file for divorce despite hating him with all her heart, because she still worries about where he’ll go and what he’ll do (he has no hobbies and all his friends have cut off contact with him or only tolerate him for a few hours, he’s THAT toxic)

So anyway, he has found a way to cause havoc in our lives despite being miles away in another city. He initially moved in with my cousin and uncle, but kept finding ways to sneak out so he could buy alcohol. We told him not to come back home for a few months at least, mostly because my mother always turns into a different, weaker person around him and is much happier when he’s gone.

Then when my cousin politely asked him to stay in one room for 14 days, he threw a massive tantrum and took the bus to his childhood town. He tried to move in with my mother’s relatives, but once again got angry when they also asked him to self-isolate in one wing of the house. He’s been moving from place to place in an attempt to find somewhere to take him in but he thinks that people turning him away is a personal slight against him and just doesn’t understand what’s so dangerous about this virus despite being diabetic.

My mother has heard about all of this and lapsed into a mental breakdown once again, worried about whether she should have been nicer or kinder to him so he wouldn’t act like this. I keep telling her that he’s a cunt and will be one no matter what, but now she’s too deep into emotional turmoil and my words seem to fall on deaf ears.

For whatever reason, advice I give is never taken by her unless my brother or aunts say it too, so I am at my wits end on how to help her recover. I don’t want my brother to play therapist again because he’s in another country trying to make a career, and truth be told I’ve always been jealous that she runs to him first and not me. I feel so juvenile holding onto these petty feelings at the ripe old age of 24, but it is what it is I guess.

How do I help my mother recover her sanity while trying not to lose my own?

You can only control what you can control.  You can’t control your dad being a dick.  You can’t control how your mother feels, or what other family members do.  You many also not be able to (completely) control your feelings about your family’s interactions and how that makes you feel.  However you can control how you react and what you choose to do, so my advice would be to focus on that.  Rather than trying to make your mum “see the light”, focus on being there for her emotionally.  She’s more likely to come out the other end of this with less scars if she has you supporting her than if she doesn’t, so don’t focus on her decision making, instead focus on helping her with her emotional needs and providing support.  The breakdown might even be a good thing, it might be the shock to the system that she needs to get through this to the other side where she can see rationally that he’s a dickhead.  Or it might not – but either way, I think that if you’re worried about her let go of the decision-making aspect.  Everyone makes their own decisions in life, you can’t change that, but you can change how you interact with them and whether you’re there for them or not.  Good luck.

Hi oppar. I was wondering what you think of the one girl from NiziU who looks like she isn’t asian. Is this other case of Kaachi? Also what do you think of a japanese group from JYP?

These questions are very broad and non-specific.  It’s a group?  She’s a person?  Not sure what you’re fishing for here.  Does she MRS?  No opinion.  Do I like the song?  Eh.  Do I care about the racial mix of people in k-pop?  I don’t care about the race of anyone because I’m not a racist.  Do I care that JYP is putting out a Japanese group?  I don’t care where he puts out his groups.  Hopefully you wanted the answer to at least one of those questions.

Recent bullying issues concerning ex-AOA’s Mina and Motherfucking Top Madam Jimin has, of course, encouraged “empathetic” fans to yet again clamor for whatever form of “justice” they have in mind. I do see some value in fans attempting to discuss issues like bullying in the Kpop industry, or encouraging fellow fans to share personal anecdotes for some insight or support. Hell, even flooding “messages of hope and strength” on social media can be purposeful whenever idols (unfortunately enough) ask fans for emotional support during times of personal distress.

With that said, something I’ve also been seeing a lot in my self-flagellating habit of reading kpop article comments me are a bunch of regularly top-voted fans, whom I guess are acting as kpop’s moral vanguards with an arsenal of platitudes like:

1. “This situation sucks, I feel bad for [idol], and I’m ready to swing my fists at anyone who doesn’t tread this conversation respectfully” if it’s kpop wank;
2. “[Idol] is nice, I like them, fuck anyone who’s being bitter about [idol]’s success” if it’s some “wholesome” bollocks;

3. “Anyone wanna join me in killing this guy”? if it’s a problematic oppar;
4. [Insert creepily curated anecdotes about idols’ personal problems for concern porn]

(In retrospect, these are just the top comments on reddit/kpop.)

As another example, a joke I’ve made about ugly creative decisions for [idol name]’s “personal” (lol) brand was met by a kpop moral vanguard’s completely reasonable response of “I hate those unemployed people who only have negative things to say about [idol name]”. What people get from white-knighting for idols is beyond me.

Do you think fans’ desire to show everyone how much they “care” about idols’ is just a covert example of parasocial relationships in kpop? Or is it stronger linked to the larger social media trend of constantly wanting to appear morally upstanding? Either way, props to you for giving zero fucks about either.

I think it’s the second one.  Most people commenting on the issue weren’t heavily invested in a parasocial relationship with Mina – she was one of the less popular members in her group after all, and always has been.  This is about people seeing a shitty situation and trying to feel good about it and look good about it by signalling their disapproval.  It’s fine to be upset at Jimin but “gosh I’m so upset at Jimin” as an Internet comment achieves precisely zero.  There’s no point pretending that the people who are complaining are helping the situation in any way or enacting any kind of positive change.  There’s plenty of angst about Jimin but where’s the corresponding campaign to actually help Mina, absolutely fucking nowhere. 

What is your favourite Gorillaz song and why?

I played a Gorillaz CD once and boy was it such a bunch of bullshit music.  However there was a great version of Jonh Cage’s “4:33” that played after the album was over, not sure how the band managed to play it so well after the CD actually stopped, they’re all about that next level technology I guess.

Have you ever dealt with .au-files? I ended up with a ton of them but sadly can’t play them. I now regret (indirectly) downloading off someone’s Soundcloud.

Help here.  God knows why people would put stuff on Soundcloud in that format though.

why does this dong make me cry like real shit

I looked but couldn’t see Shindong here.  You could be hallucinating from too much objectification survey reading.

At this rate, the music theory series is never gonna come back, is it? 😭😭😭

And I was looking forward to you shitting on all those snotty classical AND metal snobs for being their snobby selves too.

Anyway, since people here in QRIMOLE always submit songs to you for review I thought why not join in on the fun, right?

I know those are from a old trashy MMORPG (from 2003), but the game is from Korea and the composing group, soundTeMP, are also Korean, so it still qualifies as “K-pop”, right? 😜

Also, if you do like them, could you recommend some other songs (K-pop or not) that’s kinda similar to these?

Tnx

The music theory series hasn’t been canned and in fact I plan more stuff soon, work is just insane right now with everyone spreading their COVIDs around.

I may completely ban all song review submissions on QRIMOLE because they’re literally the most boring type of question of all.  Nobody should care what I think anyway, you already have roundup if you want mostly shitty one-line reviews of mostly shitty songs, and Curious Cat for anything else like that.

hello oppar! I wonder if this gets sent in for august or september. either ways, strap yourself in because this’ll be long and annoying. Hell, maybe you won’t want to post all of this.

I’m struggling to deal? cope with? My parents. I have a really weird family situation. I’m an only child. At some point my mom started suffering from some sort of paranoia (she’s never been officially diagnosed obviously but it seems to be the most likely solution) and when I was like 1 she took me away from my dad and I lived with her alone up until I was 7. She did a lot of weird things with me as a kid and I’m honestly surprised I came away only seeming quite normal. One thing I remember is that at some point she was worried about my bed being “evil” so I had to sleep in the bathtub at random nights. The air was really dry so I got nosebleeds a lot and I was super uncomfortable. So that’s what part of my formative years was like. Crazy paranoid shit. Then when I was 7 my dad had had enough and asked for custody. Basically my mom had never signed my dad on as a legal guardian?? I don’t really know. So from the age of 7 to 11 I lived alone with my father. He was fine. My mom couldn’t keep a job so my dad had to support her while we lived separately close by. Then finally when I was 11 my father moved out of the apartment and into a nice townhouse. My mom somehow ended up in the same house, but they obviously have seperate bedrooms. As I stated before my dad is a normal dude, neither a realky good nor bad parent. He tells me often that the stuff between him and my mom isn’t my fault, not to get involved, but it’s weirdly traumatising? I don’t know what the word is but the constant fighting and arguing that’s been going on for many years. Sometimes I can’t even escape it properly, like when I’m in the car with them or one of them calls the police. One of their main arguments is that my dad is struggling monetarily and wants my mom to work, and she refuses because she believes she needs to be a stay-at-home even though I’m at an age where I do almost everything for myself (I start college this fall). So while my dad goes out to work my mother and I are at home. She spends most of her time at home playing facebook games, and when she’s not doing that she’s finding something to blame either me or my father for.

I know this sounds cynical but it’s pretty much exactly it. I won’t go into details that will make this post more long than it needs to be, but basically she’s extremely paranoid and doesn’t trust anyone. She’ll refuse to go out with me if I wear certain colors she doesn’t like. Another example is there’s a large town that we live next to. She insists on not going to the town (after going there for years) because “the help” that she gets will stop if she goes there. More recently, she has become convinced that people are coming in her room and stealing and moving around her stuff, so she has 2 locks on her doors. Despite me not being in her room in years, most times she misplaces something I get yelled at, blamed for going into her room.
Like I said, there’s a lot of examples but it’s not really fun to think about.

I think what makes it painful is that she’s not always awful. Sometimes she’s a normal loving mom and we share a sense of humor together. In these moments I always feel bad for being mad or arguing with her. I also feel bad because she’s older (she had me when she was in her 40s) and I have this irrational fear of her dying and me being mean to her right before it and regretting it.

Obviously it’s hard to have any sort of relationship with someone like this, so I stay in my bedroom with my door shut most days. My father was planning for me to move out this fall when I started attending college but with COVID I’m not sure what to do. Obviously the first thing you’d do in this situation is get therapy right? Not ask random dudes on the internet.

Unfortunately neither my parents nor I have any money for any sort of therapy and when I mention my anxiety issues now my dad just recommends I pray more. I had a massive panic attack once and went to the hospital because I was convinced I was dying from a heart attack. After this, I had therapy for a time at a local clinic but it was too expensive to keep up. My dad came for a family session but my mom (of course) believes all therapists/counselors have bad intentions and refused any advice that was given during the session. So now I deal with my anxiety issues on my own. I’ve learned how to deal with myself, but my own anxiety combined with my mom’s mental issues are…just not fun. My father passively enables this behavior by allowing her for the most part to do what she wants. I just…don’t know what to do. I start online college in a few weeks, and I’ll be at home all day with my mom.

The shittiest thing about COVID is so many people are trapped in bad domestic situations.  However I’m sure you could work out a way to move out anyway, right?  That really seems like the best solution at this point, as I don’t think either your mum or dad are going to be changing much.  Really just get the hell out of there as soon as you can, anyone who is college-age should really not be living at home if it can be possibly avoided in any way, shape or manner whatsoever.  If cash is an issue perhaps just try and get some work (I know, easier said than done, but any shitty job will do as a first job) and get enough financial independence to afford a rent bond and move out.  You can always defer college if you have to, or work part-time to support yourself through it, financially it can be tough but better that than a toxic home environment.  You’ll find that your relationship with your parents will also improve drastically as soon as you move out of home!  Get out of there – any way you can!

Hi Kpopalypse oppar, thank you for this blog, it pulled me out of the kpop fandom and allowed me to return to my normal life. Within the kpop industry, looking at these scandals of bullying on top of the suicides of Sulli, Hara, and Jonghyun, PD101 tampering, etc. etc. since these are systematic problems, is there anyway for it to improve? Since I see fans say we need to reach out to these companies to treat their idols better…Or since entertainment industries worldwide probably have these problems too (not too sure about this) and imo, humans happen to be pretty shitty to each other, is this just the way things are?

The k-pop system will only change and do better if there’s a massive, overwhelming awareness of how they’re not doing good at the moment, and that awareness actively translates into activity that directly affects k-pop’s revenue streams.  That awareness does already exist in part, but it doesn’t really register properly with a lot of people.  The same people who pretend that they are so horrified about k-pop scandals are the ones who are often enabling the situations that allow those scandals to continue.  People are so shocked by suicides of major music stars both East and West, but simultaneously actively participate in strengthening the mob mentality activity and toxic groupthink that in part drives these artists to consider taking their own life.

Since there’s very little motivation for people in general to do better, things will probably continue to be the way they are.  However that doesn’t mean that people should just accept it as “well, that’s how it is, deal with it”.  For example, both myself and Edward Aliva realise that the k-pop industry is a harsh place with extremely high beauty standards.  It’s nice that Edward gets to that realisation, but then he basically turns around and says “if you don’t like how it is, suck it up butercup” whereas I’ll say “maybe these standards are actually fucking ridiculous and anyone who thinks it is absolutely necessary to starve people until they are medically underweight just to fit into some bullshit image can go and fuck themselves”. 

To this end I’ve interviewed people and asked them questions or had them talk specifically about beauty standards and weight.  I want people to see how unhealthy it is and document that these things are occuring and that this is an ongoing problem, not one that ended with the second generation of idols or whatever.  Maybe we as a society can eventually reach a point where companies will say “okay, maybe I won’t give your agency a crapload of money to get your idol to hold up a phone with an awesome camera, awesome screen and long lasting battery life, if that idol looks like they’re fucking wasting away”.  This is just one of many issues.  I’m not an activist and I try and stay away from boring political talk, but I am interested in showing people what really goes on and how things actually are, so people can make their minds up and make the right decisions for themselves.  Maybe sometimes it works?


That’s all for QRIMOLE!  This series will return in a month, in the meantime don’t forget to try not have gay sex with Yves (again)!

Oh, and do you have a question that you’d like to see answered in the next episode of QRIMOLE?  If so, use the question box below, or if no box appears, click the Qri on the sidebar to open the box as a separate webpage!  Kpopalypse will return!

2 thoughts on “QRIMOLE – August 2020

  1. Re: video’s with BDSM content – VIXX “Chained up” comes to mind first. Definitely not the teaser image of [Ken, I had to look it up] on the floor in a collar. Because boys on the floor in collars is not even slightly notable. Also quickly to mind is SongJieun “Don’t Look At Me Like That” and the beginning of Hyuna “Cause I’m God Girl”. Taemin is tied up in “Famous” and sure, Puer Kim being tied up in “Manyo Maash” is cometary and all, but also it is pretty sexy.

    IMO there is a fair amount of fetish clothing styling if not strait up BDSM imagery. E.g. Hyuna “Red”, but also lots and lots of chest harnesses.

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