MAMA 2020: Quick Thoughts

If you’re a K-pop fan, you would know that MAMA 2020 took place yesterday.

MAMA 2020 (Mnet Asian Music Awards) is a major South Korean music awards ceremony. They have special awards, competitive awards, and four grand prizes (the daesang).

BTS swept the Daesang category yesterday; they won in all four categories (Artist of the Year, Song of the Year, Worldwide Icon of the Year, and Album of the Year), which isn’t surprising. The group also won in other categories like Best Male Artist. I wouldn’t be surprised if they needed multiple bags to bring home their trophies.

It was my first time watching MAMA live. I’ve never been interested in the event. This year, I actually voted occasionally and sat through most of the second half of the show. If I had known it was going to be on earlier, I probably would’ve tuned in earlier.

All of the stages were pre-recorded, utilizing some epic technology. The performances I really enjoyed were Seventeen, Stray Kids, TWICE, BoA, and the collaboration stage between Stray Kids, The Boyz, and ATEEZ.

Seventeen’s stage blew me away. Stray Kids’ stage presence was mind-blowing. TWICE’s Cry For Me performance was better than their main tracks. When BoA performed No.1, I was having all the nostalgic feels.

I wonder why there aren’t more collaboration stages. Stray Kids, The Boyz, and ATEEZ killed it. Even though it was only a minute long and only a member from each group, they did not disappoint.

It would be amazing to see more collaboration stages between artists. I would like to see more collaboration stages, especially IU and Suga. They won in Best Collab, and seeing them perform live would’ve made my heart full.

On a side note, I’m surprised Younha and RM’s Winter Flower wasn’t a nominee for Best Collaboration. I would also love to see this epic duo live.

As an ARMY, I was obviously excited for BTS’s stage. Their performances never disappoint. However, I was underwhelmed by their Dynamite stage.

They started off strong with an empty stadium performance of ON. I really liked how there were no flashy effects; they let the setting and their performance do the talking.

And then Dynamite came on. For some reason, this performance felt unoriginal. The simple rainbow setting in the background felt bland, and the later mirage of colours was messy. Even the fireworks and the scene changes were predictable. It just made the performance feel so washed out.

I enjoyed their MMA performance of Dynamite much more with a more well-put together setting and an epic dance break by J-Hope.

BTS finished strong with their Life Goes On performance. It was a unique stage, one that really brought out the message and essence of the song. What took me by surprise was holographic Suga appearing on his part.

If you don’t know, Suga is taking a break due to his shoulder surgery. I thought that was heartwarming to finish with all 7 members. It was the first time I’ve seen a group do this too.

I think ending MAMA with Life Goes On was a good choice.

Everyone had such great stages. I’m surprised that BTS isn’t the performance I would pick as the one that stood out the most to me. Seventeen and Stray Kids really caught my eye.

On a side note, it boggles my mind that Stray Kids wasn’t a nominee for any award. Maybe they’ll pull a BTS and start winning later on. If anyone doesn’t know, BTS wasn’t a nominee for MAMA or even invited to perform during their early years.

As much as I enjoyed watching MAMA, I’m one of the many ARMYs shaking their heads. Leaving Jin’s photo out of the banner is too big of a mistake to simply overlook.

I wonder if they will continue to implement pre-recorded stages somehow. Or if they’ll be a mix of lives vs pre-recorded performances in the future. I enjoyed watching the pre-recorded stages. It’s less distracting to other viewers. But, I would think groups would rather have live crowds.

Did you watch MAMA 2020 this year? Let me know your thoughts.

2 thoughts on “MAMA 2020: Quick Thoughts

  1. I’m still in the process of watching all the performances over on Youtube and I can wholeheartedly agree with the BoA performance because I got goosebumps the moment she said the first line of “Number One”. She’s so legendary. I died when I saw Taemin perform along side her for “Only One.”

    The other performances I checked out so far were one from TWICE, Mamamoo, Taemin, Stray Kids and Jessi. I hope to check out more clips and all the BTS goodness later.

    Liked by 1 person

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