BTS and Blackpink are the biggest K-pop groups right now. Recently, both groups made history. BTS’s Dynamite charted number one on Billboard’s The Hot 100 chart, and Blackpink’s How You Like That won the ‘Song of Summer’ award at the VMAs.
In the beginning, I wasn’t a fan of either of these groups. But I listened to more of Blackpink than I did BTS. And now it’s the complete opposite.
When Blackpink debuted, I wasn’t feeling their title track (Boombayah). But it was a fun pop song that did incredibly well. And even though I didn’t prefer that song, I can see why it did well. It was catchy, and they slayed the girl crush concept. And, I mean, they’re YG Entertainment, one of the biggest entertainment companies in South Korea.
When they came out with As If It’s Your Last, Stay, and Playing With Fire, I became interested in them. I began reading news about them if I see it, watching their variety shows, and following them on social media. I was on my way to becoming a BLINK (Blackpink’s fanbase name).
But then their latest releases came out.
Blackpink is notorious for their long comebacks. I think it was a year or more than a year between Kill This Love and How You Like That. Before that, however, Blackpink did a collaboration with Lady Gaga for her sixth studio album.
I was excited about it when the news dropped, even more so when the song (Sour Candy) came out. And it wasn’t bad. It wasn’t mind-blowing, but I liked how they mixed English and Korean. The beat was solid.
When the news dropped that Blackpink was going to do a pre-release, I was all for it. Blackpink’s songs are usually catchy with mind-blowing visuals. Their music videos, like most K-pop videos, kill two birds with one stone.
But Blackpink sometimes takes it to a whole other level. I wasn’t a huge fan of Kill This Love, but their music videos just captivate you. You can’t help but keep watching.
When How You Like That came out, that was exactly how I felt. The colours and visuals were striking. But when the song ended, I was like: What? That’s it? (And not in a good way.)
I was waiting for an epic beat drop or a meatier (for lack of a better word) chorus. I enjoyed Lisa’s rap, but it felt like a tease. Lisa did great, and you’re expecting something bigger and better later on, but it just never came. Instead, they tone it back down and go back to a bland chorus. It also ended so abruptly (and not in a good way).
The entire song felt like a tease. And, I mean, in some ways it should be. How You Like That is a pre-release, so fans should naturally feel excited about the album. But this felt like clickbait.
And then Ice-cream feat. Selena Gomez came out.
I won’t dive too much into what I thought about the song. But all I had were questions. Not great ones.
If How You Like That was clickbait, then Ice-cream is like fake news. Or even the other way around.
I’m still excited to see what Blackpink will put out next. Though, whoever is doing their marketing or music strategy or whatever you want to call it, I am really not a fan.
I don’t even remember when I watched BTS’s debut music video. It was so long ago. But I remember that I wasn’t interested. I remember that I was really into EXO. So, this rookie group that didn’t seem to bring anything new to the table quickly left my mind.
Fast forward a few years later… I had a colleague, and she was really into BTS. That time, she showed me their latest song, War of Hormone, and it was unbelievably catchy. I remember putting this song, the only BTS song, on my playlist. But I still didn’t check out their other works. Why? No idea.
Fast forward to a few years later… I was seeing BTS everywhere. They were doing well, domestically and even overseas. I remember thinking: Oh, hey; I know this group. But I STILL didn’t check out their latest music. I guess I was too into SM Entertainment groups, especially Red Velvet.
And then came the day that I watched BTS’s performance on Jimmy Kimmel or Jimmy Fallon Live. I wish I can remember what performance it was. All I remember was that I really enjoyed it. They blew my mind.
Now, I can’t remember if it was after or before I watched their performance, but I heard about BTS’s Love Myself campaign and BTS’s RM speech at the United Nations. And, wow. Their message and courage were so inspiring. This was when I became interested in them, especially RM. I couldn’t help admire his strength and intelligence to lead this group to such success.
A few months later, I then watched BTS do the Fortnite Challenge, and it was the best thing I ever watched.
That’s when I realized something. Every single “interaction” I had with BTS was always a positive one. It didn’t matter whether I listened to their song, watched their performance and variety or talk shows, or read their news, it was always an enjoyable experience.
When Dynamite came out, I listened to it with no expectations. And they blew me away, again. And, well, after like seven years, I finally became a fan.
I PURPLE YOU.
I don’t know if BTS had a say in their music or marketing strategy, but whoever proposed it and whoever listened deserves a round of applause.
I’m genuinely excited to see where BTS and Blackpink are headed next. Both are already a force to be reckoned with, and I’m sure they’ll continue to break records. If these two groups ever have a collab, I think the world will scream.