Former BEAST member Jang Hyunseung wants to be your ‘Home’ in his first comeback single

Ahh, there are so many emotions running through me as I listen to this song. Former BEAST member Hyunseung – who is now a solo artist under CUBE – released his first single since leaving the group (who has now since rebranded as Highlight) titled ‘Home.’

‘Home’ is a soft, mellow, and breezy acoustic instrumental accompanied by Hyunseung’s heavenly voice. Although the song might sound like a typical break-up song, being the emotional and nostalgic person I am, you could also interpret the song as if Hyunseung is speaking to himself. He’s waiting for himself to return home; he wishes to return to the way that he was once and used to be. The track doesn’t contain much and have much going on, but maybe that’s what makes the song as good as it is. Sometimes simplicity is the best.

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I would be lying if I said that I didn’t get emotional while listening to this. I didn’t even know Hyunseung had released a new single so upon finding out, I quickly went to go search for the song on youtube. And before I even clicked on any of the videos provided, I got teary-eyed. As many of y’all who follow my blog know, I was a HUGE fan of BEAST/Highlight. I was there since their debut when they were 6 members and followed them and loved them and supported them like no other. They were truly the very first group that I followed and admired. I’ve been into K-Pop for many years now (almost a decade) and have come across many groups over the years, but none of them stood out to me as much as BEAST did when they were 6 members.

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When I found out that Hyunseung had left BEAST and BEAST would return as five members under new name Highlight, my heart was broken. I was sad. It hurt so freaking bad. I’ve never even seen them before in real life with my own eyes, but I just couldn’t believe that the one group I loved so much would break up. And this is something that I will always be sad over and it’s something that I will always reflect and think about. Why did Hyunseung leave BEAST? Why didn’t he stay with the other members and join them as Highlight? Why did he stay in CUBE while they left to make their own company and group? There are so many questions that I have that will unfortunately probably remain unanswered forever. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t love Hyunseung as much as I love Highlight, because I still do. Even if they’ve gone their own ways and are now doing two different things under two different names, I will still love and support them separately like how I used to when they were still a group. Sometimes things happen and change in life and that’s okay.

Although I do miss the times and memories of BEAST, that doesn’t mean that it’s the end for the members. Highlight has returned and they genuinely seem a lot happier than they used to be when they were with CUBE while Hyunseung finally made a comeback and hopefully is also happy with where he is right now in life. Although BEAST no longer exists, I will never forget all the happiness, laughter, smiles, and tears that I shared with them and other fellow B2UTY’s. It was fun, amazing, and beautiful while it lasted and is something that I will hold dear to my heart forever. They will always remain my #1 bias group.

Source: my highlight @ youtube

BTS aims for a comeback in September + J-hope to release his mixtape when?!

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source: yoonmin@tumblr

This is ultimately really great news. In fact, it’s wonderful. It’s amazing. These kind of announcements are what I live for; they keep me alive and they make me happy. But at the same time, they stress me out a lot and I find myself in constants screaming and tears. One of my ultimate bias groups, my loves, my inspiration, my happiness, my family – BTS – is going to make a comeback in about a month. IDK HOW TO FEEL?!

Big Hit announced not too long ago that BTS is currently gearing for a comeback in September. Originally the comeback was planned for August but had been pushed back (thank goodness). Despite the delay, I’m happy and excited regardless for their return and I’m actually happy that they’re not coming back in August, even if that means waiting a little bit longer for their comeback.

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source: fyeahjunghoseok@tumblr

The boys finished their 5-month world tour earlier this month in July so I’m glad that they’re finally getting some time to rest and relax which they absolutely deserve. They’ve been using the time to rest ever since with news of Jin, Jungkook, and V in Jeju Island a few days ago and J-hope hanging out with his friends just earlier this month.

Because BTS is so hot right now and is the breadwinner in Big Hit, I can understand why Big Hit would want to milk BTS as much as possible and have been doing so the past few years. I think it’s a good thing that BTS is actually coming back this year. This comeback will help solidify their status and position in the competitive K-Pop industry even more considering that they haven’t had an official comeback this year yet (I don’t really count YNWA as a comeback since they only promoted it for a week before embarking on their world tour). With all the competition in the industry right now, a comeback will allow BTS to maintain that success and hype that they have worked so hard in building up for themselves over the years. But at the same time, because BTS is so popular right now there’s also a lot more pressure to do better than their previous comebacks. ‘Wings’ was exceptional and was another career defining moment for the group so I feel like everyone’s eyes are on BTS right now waiting to see what they have in store next, fans and non-fans alike. Along with the notable BBMA’s award win and successful world tour, BTS has been growing at an exponential rate so it’ll be interesting to see what kind of concept and music they come back with.

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source: kths@tumblr

The members talked a little bit about how they were even preparing for the album while they were on their world tour and while I disapprove of this because the boys were already doing enough on the world tour, that just screams dedication and passion if anything. One can tell that the boys are really taking this comeback seriously and putting all their effort into it like how they’ve done with their past promotions. I’m also glad that their comeback was postponed to September just because 1) I wanted them to get more rest and time to themselves 2) the comeback might have been rushed and not as strong as their previous ones which could have hurt their careers. So it’s good news to hear that BTS’s comeback is in September instead of August as originally planned even if that means having to wait a little bit longer.

 

Another reason why I’m thinking BTS delayed their comeback is so precious sunshine J-hope has more time to work on and promote his mixtape (aka hixtape as fans have been calling it). He’s been mentioning talks of his hixtape for the past few months and has been working at it hard especially the past few weeks since the end of the world tour. J-hope’s been teasing fans with pictures and whatnot so fans are dying and screaming and crying because we don’t know exactly when his hixtape will drop. In fact, many are worried that he’ll drop it at a time while they’re asleep (AND I TOTALLY AGREE which is why I’ve been waking up at 8am every morning now since that’s when it’s midnight in Korea when he might release it then). Ugh, the wait is pure torture and the thought of not knowing when it’s going to drop is scary. J-hope hinted that he was planning on releasing it in July, but there’s not many days left in this month so it could drop anytime soon or maybe he’s postponed it to August since BTS’s comeback has been postponed.

Regardless, I’m excited and hyped for the mixtape but I am also just as nervous for it. This has been a project that J-hope has always wanted to do and has been working on non-stop the past few months and it’s all finally coming together. I’m so proud of J-hope because his journey in BTS hasn’t been an easy one and he’s the last rapper out of the rap line in BTS to release a mixtape. There’s probably some pressure on J-hope to reach the same level of success that Rap Monster and Suga has with their individual mixtapes respectively, but I hope this pressure doesn’t get to J-hope too much and that no comparisons are made between the mixtapes. I sincerely hope instead that fans will learn to appreciate all three of the mixtapes and the songs, lyrics, and stories the members presented in them. They’re all different and great in their own ways.

 

Through the hixtape, I’m hoping a lot more people will learn to appreciate J-Hope. He’s probably one of the least appreciated members in BTS and is a pretty hidden member in every area that he’s exceptional in (rapping, dancing, and even singing). Just like the other members, he also deals with issues of self-esteem and lack of confidence which is why I think he’s been working on this mixtape for so long. He wants it to be nearly perfect so he might be working on it little by little to perfect everything as much as possible. I want him to take as much time as he needs to work on this mixtape so that he’s satisfied with it. Of course I think he will still have regrets about certain things with the mixtape even after it’s released and will share with us what those regrets are and what things he could have done better. But I want J-hope to know that him putting out another mixtape is already a huge achievement and accomplishment in itself and is another defining moment for his career. This mixtape is his, is for him, and is by him. It’s about his stories and experiences so as long as he’s satisfied with it then that’s all that matters.

(So I actually watched this for the first time the other day while I was at Target waiting for my sister because I had never seen any of the short films/teasers for the ‘Wings’ comeback. I at first thought this was the teaser for the hixtape so I almost screamed and cried in the store but luckily I found out that it wasn’t. I almost had a heart attack)

J-hope gave us a preview of the types of issues he’s gone through as seen in his short film teaser for the ‘Wings’ album with ‘MAMA’ so I’m expecting J-hope to talk about some of these things in his mixtape (and I hope he does). If he does, it’ll be different from how we usually see J-hope who’s known as the moodmaker and the happy virus of BTS. He’s always so positive and energetic and always has a smile on his face (omg at the Wings tour in Anaheim, he had a smile on his face every time). But because J-hope is also human, there are days and times where he’s gonna go through stuff and he won’t always be happy and energetic and that’s totally okay.

In a way, I do hope to see him talk about things that are important to him – be it family, mental health, depression, anxiety, expectations, etc. J-hope does not always have to be happy just because his stage name implies that and I don’t want him to feel pressured and burdened to always carry that image with him everywhere. I want him to be okay with just being himself and being mad or angry or sad in life because that happens in life and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. I’m also hoping that just like Suga did, J-hope releases music videos for a few of his songs (maybe that’s what’s taking so long for him to release his hixtape + because he’s working hard on it). I just know that his hixtape will blow us all away and no matter how much we prepare ourselves for it, we won’t ever be really prepared for what he has prepared. He’s gonna be rapping and dancing and staring through our souls in these MV’s and it’s just gonna be so great (OMG JUST IMAGINE WHAT THE MV’S WILL BE LIKE IF THE ‘MAMA’ SHORT FILM TEASER FOR WINGS IS ALREADY A MASTERPIECE!!).

 

I’m not a morning person so I usually don’t wake up early to do things, BUT BTS and J-hope has been the exception. I’ve been waking up earlier and earlier to check for news of J-hope’s hixtape to the point where I think I might not even sleep anymore. Just kidding, but I’m highly anticipating J-hope’s hixtape and BTS’s comeback. Right now, I’m in a position where I care more for J-hope’s hixtape though because it’s about time that he gets his time to shine and the opportunity to showcase his many talents and skills. I just hope his spotlight won’t interfere and overlap with BTS’s comeback or become shortened because of BTS’s comeback. I just want Hobi to receive the same amount of love and shine that he constantly gives and shines down on us fans. I want everyone to turn Hobi-biased after the release of his hixtape. He deserves it and so much more.

Source: ibighit@youtube, ashleygold25@youtube

#ListentoThis: punchnello – imwaitingrighthere

As I continue to listen to Korean hip-hop, I also discover more and more hidden gems along the way and have been trying to expand on the amount of artists that I listen to. Thankfully, this year’s SMTM introduced me to some of these new gems and now I’m a fan of punchnello who I discovered through the show.

After watching him on SMTM (and crying internally because he lost and got eliminated), I was a lot more curious about him so I checked him out on youtube and listened to a few more of his tracks. While they were all good, the one track that I absolutely fell in love with and cannot stop listening to is titled ‘imwaitingrighthere.’ From the very second Punchnello belt out his vocals and I heard him sing ‘baby’ I fell in love with both him and the song. It was just so beautiful; it was like ear candy heaven to my ears. Everything about this song is so beautiful, from the instrumental of the song to his mellow and soft voice. I’ve been listening to this song non-stop so I felt the need to share it with y’all so y’all can also enjoy it!

(another good song of his! highly recommend listening to it!)

I also did some research on punchnello since I’m slowly learning more about him and becoming a fan of his. He’s an artist under HIGHGRND (aka the side label that Tablo used to be CEO of) and is also in the crew Club Eskimo (alongside Dean and Zico among others). When I first saw him I thought he was older than me because he just looked more mature, but upon doing my research I actually find out that he’s younger than me by a year (I’m so shook). But moving on, although I don’t know too much about punchnello, I like his music and his rapping and he seems like a cool guy.

Although it’s unfortunate that punchnello got eliminated from SMTM he’s still active as a rapper so we’ll still get to see him from time to time. You can find more of his music on his official soundcloud account and support him there!

Source: dandelions music @ youtube

School 2017: Episode 4 recap

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Watching this drama is such a roller coaster. One second I’m squealing and screaming over Tae-woon and Eunho moments and then the next I’m sighing in frustration and then I’m back to crying because Eunho and Tae-woon are too cute for me. And there’s only 4 episodes out so far. How am I gonna put up with the rest of the drama? *nervously laughs*

[Listen to this!]: New OST track

School 2017 Episode 4: Encounter

Episode four begins with Dae-hwi and Tae-woon fighting each other in the classroom alone by themselves. Eunho tries to stop the two from hurting each other any further, but she fails to do so. It isn’t until Teacher Koo witnesses them fighting that the two boys finally stop.

The three are brought into the teacher’s office room for an interrogation. While in the office, Teacher Koo gives them two options to choose from: they can either decide to settle this issue with the school violence commission or they can be unofficially punished through Teacher Koo. The three choose the latter.

Their first punishment is to run laps around the gym. Even while running the boys are competitive and still angry at each other, pushing and shoving each other. Eunho finishes her twenty laps but can only focus on Dae-hwi and Tae-woon. She notices how even though they’re still angry at each other, they’re also torturing themselves in the process and that even though they individually might be going through their own problems in life, Eunho is somehow still intertwined in both boys’ lives.

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Eunho receives a letter from Hanguk University notifying her that she’s made it into the finals for the competition and goes over it with Teacher Shim at school. As usual, as long as she places third in the competition and submits her portfolio and student records, she has a shot at getting accepted into the university. However, her student record is the problem so together Teacher Shim and Eunho plead for the principal to get rid of her demerit points. But it’s of no use as the principal will only eliminate Eunho’s demerit points if she catches X.

Eunho is suddenly reminded about her drawing sketchbook that had originally been taken away from Teacher Koo. She’s planning to use that as her portfolio, but had forgotten about it this whole time. However, when she asks Teacher Koo about her sketchbook he tells her that it got stolen by X (oh noooo). He then commands Eunho to bring Dae-hwi and Tae-woon to the gym.

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The triplets are in the gym again receiving their second punishment from Teacher Koo. He informs them that their next punishment is to clean every corner of the school for the next ten days and if one of them is missing the day won’t count as valid. Tae-woon would rather receive demerit points than physical punishments, but Eunho disagrees. She can’t afford to get any more demerit points than she already has right now. Teacher Koo leaves and the three are alone in the gym. Eunho makes a suggestions that raises both boys’ eyebrows: help her find X. She explains to them that she had her sketchbook stolen by X and would like their support in finding X or else her chances of making it into Hanguk University will be gone forever.

While Dae-hwi is opened to the idea, Tae-woon refuses. He becomes bewildered when Eunho calls X a psychopath and walks out the gym only to be stopped by Eunho. She once again asks for his help, but instead of answering her question he asks her something else instead, “Will you go out with me?” (UM EXCUSE ME??? I WAS NOT READY FOR THIS).

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“Then how about you kiss me?” (OMG I’M SUFFERING. THIS IS TOO MUCH FOR ME. TAE-WOON WHY DIDN’T YOU TELL ME YOU WERE GOING TO ASK EUNHO THOSE QUESTIONS FIRST??). Tae-woon is going crazy because of Eunho’s request to help her find X and when he’s about to leave the gym, she holds him back. They have to clean the gym together; it’s a joint responsibility between all of them. So they start cleaning, but not before Tae-woon goes chasing after Eunho with mops (omg they’re so cute! and he grabbed the largest mop there was and was chasing after her I’m crying).

Officer Soo-ji and Teacher Shim are still working together on the hunt for X. She notices a big red warehouse just sitting in a corner of the school dirty and unused. She requests for Teacher Shim to find the keys to the warehouse; they’re gonna look into it.

Tae-woon and Eunho walk to their bikes and motorcycle together respectively. Before leaving on his motorcycle, Tae-woon notices that Eunho got a scratch on her arm and hands her some bandage. He notes that he carries the bandage around because his friend got it for him to help him heal any possible injuries he got from riding his motorcycle. Upon mentioning his friend (Joong-gi who passed away), Tae-woon stops talking and just rides away on his motorcycle (awww, poor Tae-woon).

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We find out more about behind the broken relationship between Tae-woon and Dae-hwi through Sarang who spills the details to Eunho over some drinks. As we saw in episode 3, the two used to be best friends with Joong-gi until the motorcycle accident which then caused their friendship to shatter. Sarang explains to Eunho that the bus she was on was the same bus that Joong-gi saved people on and that Tae-woon’s dad had framed the accident to be as if it was Joong-gi’s fault it happened when really it was Tae-woon’s (oh nooo).

We return to the scene of the accident that happened a year ago. We find an injured and terrified Tae-woon sitting on the side of the street. He calls his dad to inform him about the accident and then leaves the scene. Dae-hwi arrives at the scene and calls out Tae-woon’s name upon seeing him, but there is no answer.

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We return to the present in Dae-hwi’s bedroom. He tries to focus, but finds it difficult as he can only think about Joong-gi and the accident. His mother comes to visit and brings up the touchy subject to Dae-hwi, saying Joong-gi’s family probably got a lot of money for what happened – especially since the media made it out to seem like the accident was Joong-gi’s fault when really it wasn’t. This angers Dae-hwi and he asks for his mother to leave or else he won’t be able to study and will become powerless just like how his deceased friend was.

Eunho also researches for more details about the accident, but finds no mentions of Tae-woon’s name anywhere in the articles and reports about it. Joong-gi was really blamed for what happened.

The next day at school, the triplets are cleaning a classroom together. Eunho shares with Dae-hwi that her wish is for X to punish the principal by doing the exact same thing to him that he’s been doing to the students – capture any bad habits he’s doing and give him demerit points (aka give him a taste of his own medicine!). Dae-hwi just nervously laughs at Eunho’s wish which raises her suspicion even more.

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Sarang reveals more details to Eunho about Dae-hwi and Tae-woon. When it was Joong-gi’s funeral procession, Dae-hwi didn’t attend because he was busy studying for exams. Upon finding out, Tae-woon grew furious and confronted this issue with Dae-hwi at school. We return to Sarang and Eunho and the two discussing any possibilities of Dae-hwi being X. It doesn’t seem like he can be X. Maybe he might be doing this to relieve himself of stress from studying, but he also didn’t attend his best friend’s funeral. Why would someone like him fight for justice as X?

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In the next scene, we find 4 students texting one another in a group chat. It’s the same 4 students that we saw in the earlier episodes. They mention talks of trusting Dae-hwi and letting him into the plan and then concluding that it’s time to hurry on with their plan. Hmm, what’s gonna happen and who are these 4 students?

The merit-demerit system continues to stress everyone out including Teacher Shim. He can’t seem to catch up with how many pictures students are sending him of other students caught doing bad habits just for merit points. It’s too much for him and he gives up.

Teacher Shim then hurries to his classroom to make an announcement about a new rule that will only apply to his students: for every report from his students, he will run a lap around the schoolyard. He hopes that by doing this, it will motivate the students to stop attacking one another and exposing their friends just for merit points. It’s unhealthy and he doesn’t want his students to act that way. Upon hearing this, Eunho chases Teacher Shim outside of the classroom and together they share a moment of encouragement and hope.

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Back inside the classroom Eunho finds the drawing sketchbook that Teacher Koo had taken away from her inside her locker! She shares this with Sarang later on that evening at her house and together they discuss whether it was Dae-hwi or Tae-woon behind the action since only the two of them know about Eunho’s missing sketchbook. While they discuss the reasons why either Dae-hwi or Tae-woon could be X, Eunho’s brother and father leaves the house in a rush leaving Eunho to be responsible with making deliveries. Unknowingly, she arrives at Dae-hwi’s place as that was where she was supposed to deliver. She arrives to find an angry Dae-hwi protecting his mother from the landlord who’s mad at Dae-hwi’s mother for not paying for rent on time.

Dae-hwi and Eunho head out for some fresh air and refreshing drinks after the chaotic situation. Eunho cheers Dae-hwi up by reassuring that he’ll be fine and that he’ll have enough money because he’s smart, but Dae-hwi is still concerned. Will his intelligence and rank in school really help him and his mother become financially stable? While Dae-hwi and Eunho sit in silence, Dae-hwi’s girlfriend notices them from across the street after having gotten off the bus and scoffs in disbelief.

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Teacher Shim stays true to his words and run laps around the yard as he said he would if his students continued to make reports on one another. Some of the students watch him as he runs, concerned and worried for his health while some others just stay inside the classroom, in denial that something like this will stop the students from participating in the merit-demerit system.

While walking to her bike, Eunho overhears Tae-woon arguing with his dad outside. Tae-woon confesses to his dad that he wants to turn himself in because the guilt over Joong-gi’s death is too much for him, but Tae-woon’s dad refuses to let his son do that. Eunho saves Tae-woon by interrupting their conversation and asking Tae-woon to get food with her. Tae-woon’s dad walks away and the two friends go out to eat at Subway.

Tae-woon and Eunho bicker back and forth over who’s gonna pay for the sandwiches (hehe they’re like a couple already). He then decides to take her out for some ice cream after the sandwiches, but along the way they stop at a shop to fix Tae-woon’s broken watch. While waiting for the worker to help them with their request, Eunho takes a look at the watch and notices that it looks awfully similar to the watch she saw a year ago on the day of the accident.

We return back to the day of the accident the year before. Tae-woon and Joong-gi are enjoying their motorcycle rides when Joong-gi becomes distracted by his cell phone. He almost crashes into a car, but luckily swerves to avoid the vehicle falling on his motorcycle along the way but still safe. Tae-woon does the same after having witnessed what happened to Joong-gi and together they find themselves down on the street.

Tae-woon’s leg is stuck under the motorcycle so he’s unable to move, but he tells Joong-gi to save those in the bus first. Joong-gi manages to save almost everyone on the bus – including Eunho who was in the bus at that time – and heads back to save more when the bus explodes in fire. Tae-woon regretfully watches his friend die as he struggles to move the heavy motorcycle that’s on top of his leg. Police officers arrive at the scene, but it’s too late to save Joong-gi. The bus is already up in flames.

We return to the present with Eunho and Tae-woon sitting on the rooftop of a building (aka their secret spot). Here, Tae-woon discovers that Joong-gi had saved Eunho on the bus that night which was why the watch looked so familiar to her when she finally had a chance to glance at it – it was because she saw it when Joong-gi saved her on the bus on the day of the accident. They can only steal glances at each other and empathize with each other as they mourn over the accident.

It’s another day of school and Teacher Shim is still running laps for how many reports are made. More and more of the students show support and concern for him, but there are still students left in the classroom indifferent.

There’s only 2 more days left until the deadline of the competition. Eunho stresses over what she should do: should she protect Tae-woon and Dae-hwi who could either be X or should she protect herself and report who she thinks is X so she can get into Hanguk University?

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It’s the day that everyone is dreading. An assembly with everyone is held to catch X. The top 10 students with the most demerit points are to stand in front of the entire school and confront the question of whether they’re X or not. Of course, Eunho is first with the most amount of demerit points.

As the VP calls out the names of the 10 top students, another prank is pulled by X. As a film plays on the screen in front of them, the principal and VP releases the guards they had hired to find X and go after him. While they do that, everyone else focuses on the film that is playing. Consisting of pictures of the principal and the amount of demerit points he should get for his bad habits, all the students laugh at the film. But then the film also turns it the other way around. Yeah, the principal has done things that he should get demerit points for, but what about them? They’ve done the same exact thing. Taking pictures of friends and classmates just for merit points. They’re not any better. Everyone’s smiles fades and they stare around in guilt and nervousness.

Just then, the guards are seen chasing after X. X – once again in his black hoodie – runs away to escape from the guards and teachers chasing after him. Eunho also joins them, but heads another route different from the one that X is taking. She then bumps into X, but instead of holding him back to expose him, she helps him instead! She finds a hiding spot for him which he uses to hide and then leads the teachers and guards on a false trail to get rid of any suspicion. Eunho let X go even though she had the perfect opportunity to turn him in to clear her name.

The next day at school, Eunho sits in the classroom while observing her classmates interacting, talking, and having fun with each other. She reveals that even though she could have revealed the identity of X to everyone, she ultimately chose not to because she’s made friends through this school and although these friends might not be heroes like Joong-gi, they’re all at an age where they can be friends because of their ability to relate to one another.

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At school that day, Teacher Shim does the unthinkable. He tears down the chart indicating how many demerit points each students has to demonstrate the end of the merit-demerit system. All the students rejoice at this news, but the principal is furious and he yells at Teacher Shim for even thinking about doing such a thing.

Eunho and Sarang are at the library studying when shouts of X running around is heard in the hallways. Eunho hurries out to join the chase and finds herself chasing after Dae-hwi who’s in his school uniform. She’s confident that he’s X because he was the only one who knew about she wanted to give the principal demerit points to prove his corruption too (which had happened at the school assembly).

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Dae-hwi is unaware that Eunho’s been chasing after him though and stops to glance back at him just in case he finds anyone suspicious. Eunho is about to get caught when the actual X pulls her to the side and hides with her. Dae-hwi finds no one and joins others in the chase.

Meanwhile, Eunho releases herself from X and faces him. X then reveals his identity by taking off his hoodie.

X is none other than Tae-woon. Eunho can only gasp as she discovers who X truly is while Tae-woon remains unfazed.

My Thoughts:

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Wowow. There is a lot of running in this drama huh? And just how fast and smart is X that he’s able to outrun everyone every single time. And also, can’t he be a little bit more discrete? Jokes aside, I’m surprised but satisfied that we found out who X was pretty quickly. I was actually expecting the drama to drag out this sub-plot a little longer, but I’m glad that it didn’t because it was starting to get old and boring. In a way I’m not surprised that Tae-woon is X and I do believe that he has his own reasons for committing the pranks/incidents. Maybe this is a sign of rebellion against his abusive and crappy father or he really dislikes the way the school is operating and wants to play around a little bit to mess things up. Whatever reason it is, Tae-woon is the total opposite of what Eunho had been assuming along – Tae-woon is a fighter for justice.

I’m wondering if Tae-woon is actually X though or if this is just a fake set-up. The group of 4 students make me suspicious because it seems like they could be the one behind the pranks/incidents and have mentioned talks of trusting Dae-hwi so I’m not really sure who to believe or how to react to the discovery of Tae-woon as X. Maybe this could be a false lead or Tae-woon is merely just one of many X’s throughout the school and this is a collaboration between several students on campus. But then again, now that I think about this episode, it also makes sense that Tae-woon is X because 1) he got mad that Eunho called X a psychopath so of course this would make sense if he’s X 2) he overheard Eunho’s wish of teasing the principal with demerit points even though she thought she had only said that to Dae-hwi because he was actually in the same room as them when she said that. Regardless, I’m definitely interested to see if this discovery holds any truth at all or if the drama is just leading us on only to reveal who the actual identity of X will be later on in the drama (I’m really hoping X will be someone we totally didn’t expect, but if it’s Tae-woon that’s fine with me too).

It was great to see Teacher Shim stand up for himself and advocate for not only himself but the students. Once again, his determination and passion for justice showed tremendously in this episode and he risked his own life in the process to end the corrupt system that was heavily affecting the lives of his students. I know he had been building himself up for this moment the past 3 episodes so it was so great to see him step up and do what he had only merely imagined of doing. Of course, he was reprimanded for not obeying the rules at the school but he did what he thought was right (and what was right) and now that he did what he thought he could never do, maybe this will be the push that will encourage and motivate him to have the rest of his students join him in rebelling against the school altogether.

I’m also glad that Teacher Shim hopefully put an end to the merit-demerit system. Not just so the drama can move on with something else, but because it was really stressing the students out and wasn’t doing anyone any good. It even backfired on the principal in the end so I’m hoping this system will die and the students can be a little bit more at peace.

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While there are things that the drama doesn’t do as well such as repeating the same kind of situations that makes the drama unappealing or inserting random scenes that doesn’t flow with the rest of the episode, I discovered through this episode that the one thing that School 2017 does do well is all the sadness and angst. You could feel and understand the pain and hurt that Tae-woon and Eunho felt as they mourned over Joong-gi’s death with each other. Tae-woon even discovered that Eunho was also affected by the accident which I think allowed and will continue to allow him to open up to her in the future because they have something so important in common. I would even argue that they were able to bond and become even closer to each other after becoming aware of this fact. Tae-woon and Eunho both cherish Joong-gi for their own respective reasons and I think this will become a motivating factor that will allow the two to be each other’s rock and hope, not only when confronted with memories of this accident but also in the future when they’re faced with their own issues and obstacles.

Through this discovery, another layer is yet added to Tae-woon and Eunho’s budding relationship. In addition to losing someone that they both appreciated and cherished, they also saved each other multiple times in this drama which I loved. Now it’s no longer just Tae-woon saving Eunho, but Eunho saving him as well so I think these incidents will give hopefully bring them closer to each other to the point where they become used to it and fall in love with each other.

All in all, I’m really enjoying the tone and mood of melancholy, nostalgia, and sadness in this drama. It does a fairly good job of setting that tone and maintaining it when necessary and I hope the drama keeps this up for many episodes to come.

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I don’t blame Eunho for not catching X and revealing his identity to everyone. Although she obviously wants the best for herself and is doing the best she can to get into Hanguk University because that’s one of the only options left in store for her, she is also so selfless at the same time. And I would argue that she cares more about others than she cares about herself. She basically gave up her shot of Hanguk University to protect X which I’m pretty sure none of the other students would have done if they were in the same situation that she was in. Eunho is really one of the only students left in the school who remains selfless and continually shows care and support for others – whether that’d be indirectly as seen with the whole X thing or directly. It’s unfortunate that the other students don’t see this though and don’t realize the effort that she’s putting in to save them. I wonder what it’s gonna take for her to improve her image and prove to others that she’s not who they think she is. But then at the same time she doesn’t need to prove herself to anyone because they probably won’t believe her and because Eunho is great as she is.

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I know that some are confused as to whether Tae-woon or Dae-hwi is the male lead and although both of them are our main male characters, after watching the first 4 episodes I’d like to think that Tae-woon is the male lead. He’s had a lot more interactions with Eunho than Dae-hwi has and has received maybe a few more spotlights than Dae-hwi (also it just seems like the drama is setting him up to be Eunho’s love interest). But that’s not to say that Dae-hwi hasn’t had his time to shine as well because through the last two episodes we’ve gotten time to know his story a little bit more. I actually find his story intriguing because even though he’s viewed as the perfect model student, he’s going through his own problems and is living proof that being the smartest and most successful doesn’t necessarily guarantee a carefree and easy life. There are plenty of worries that Dae-hwi is facing and it’d be interesting to see how he continues to endure with all the pressure and difficulties he faces both at home and at school. Maybe this is why he isn’t exactly in love with his girlfriend even though they’re “together.” He has other priorities that he rather worry about instead and I can understand – at least in this drama – why he’s not as concerned about the relationship as his girlfriend is.

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Now that X has been revealed (or has he?), it’ll be interesting to see what happens from here on out. I can foresee more conflicts and dilemmas for Eunho who’s already had to deal with many situations deciding whether to be selfish or selfless. Is there any way that she can be both so that other students and Eunho herself gets a happy ending?

Source

Korean hip-hop producers GroovyRoom are ‘Everywhere’ with their new EP

Producer duo GroovyRoom, who just recently signed onto Jay Park and Cha Cha Malone’s new hip-hop label H1GHR Music, released a new EP titled ‘Everywhere’ featuring everyone. Just kidding, but many artists and rappers did participate in the making of the album and all the tracks are pretty solid.

The album consists of 6 new tracks with artists like Jay Park, Sik-K, DOK2, Suran, Giriboy, pH-1, Masta Wu, and much more featured on the album. Although I thought all the tracks were pretty solid, my absolute and obvious favorite would have to be “어디쯤에” featuring Suran and pH-1. Suran is no doubt an amazing singer and pH-1’s verse is another highlight of the song, but I especially enjoyed the instrumental chorus. The song is groovy and fun and it just makes you want to sway and dance along to the song. But the title track to the EP is called ‘XINDOSHI’ and it features Sik-K, Masta Wu (had actually forgotten about him until this featuring LOL), Loopy, and Kim Hyo-eun from SMTM5. Funny thing is that out of all the songs the title track was actually my least favorite; I couldn’t even get through the whole song and I still haven’t been able to yet, but my favorite part would easily have to be Kim Hyo-eun’s rap with the beat change (skipped to his part).

GroovyRoom consists of two members (I think both were born in 1994 so they’re pretty young but have had some experience with producing for about 2 years now since 2015). Prior to this album, I thought I had never listened to any GroovyRoom tracks before (I actually didn’t even know who they were until recently with the news about them signing with H1GHR Music) but apparently they’ve produced a few tracks that I’ve listened to (many times) before including but not limiting to Gary’s ‘Get Some Air’ in his ‘2002’ album (I loved that song! I still do to this day). And then after watching an interview with them along with their new labelmates in H1GHR Music, I found out about them and I’m now interested in them and their music (doesn’t help that they’re both pretty cute too).

(okay i lied they’re both actually really pretty cute)

Give their new album a listen if you haven’t yet. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. They’re still pretty new in the industry and are just barely finally getting their names out there now that they’ve signed onto H1GHR Music. I think we can expect to see them around a lot more often now along with the other artists in H1GHR Music who Jay Park and Cha Cha has been promoting heavily the past few months. It’s great to see new names and talents in the Korean hip-hop industry, especially those who have been doing this for a while now but just didn’t necessarily have the push or best support system to back them up.

I’m excited to see what else GroovyRoom and H1GHR Music (as well as AOMG) has in store in the future. I can see H1GHR Music reaching the same levels of success as AOMG considering that the artists and producers in both labels are so talented. Anyways, back I go to listening to my favorite track on the album 🙂

Source: H1GHR MUSIC @ youtube, xmixandmatchx @ youtube, HIPHOPPLAYA @ youtube, Dingo FreeStyle @ youtube

School 2017: Episode 3 recap

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Can the school just learn to be peaceful for once and can everyone just be friends? Why does that seem so hard for the students at Eunho’s school to accomplish? It doesn’t seem like things are getting better and in fact, it’s not. Things are only getting worse. Survival and the road to survival at the school is real and very well alive. Here’s to hoping that everyone will eventually learn that maybe in order to survive (and thrive), ranks and status isn’t everything and that maybe – just maybe – communication is how you get there.

School 2017 Episode 3: Suspect Your Friend

Episode 3 starts off with scenes of the culprit preparing the pranks that he pulled at the school the past few months. In addition to the drone one that he committed in last week’s episode, he’s seen decorating and ruining a car parked at the school parking lot. Officer Soo-ji and Teacher Shim watch him carefully from away and attempt to sneak up from behind him to catch the culprit, but a noise that Teacher Shim makes alarms the culprit and he runs away with both adults chasing after him.

It turns out that Eunho still faces the consequences of getting demerit points even though it was proven that she wasn’t the culprit. As she bids farewell to Sarang and is about to bike her way home, she sees Officer Soo-ji and Teacher Shim chasing after the culprit. She joins them in the chase and just when it seems like it’s impossible to catch the culprit, he gets caught – not by Teacher Shim or Officer Soo-ji or Eunho but by Teacher Jung (Min Sung-wook, aka the creepy boss in ‘Age of Youth’). Together, they all anticipate who exactly the culprit is as Teacher Jung pulls back the hoodie on the culprit’s head.

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In the next scene, we find out that the culprit is one of Teacher Shim’s students, Duk-soo (Choi Sung Min)! However, he claims that he is not the actual culprit and that he was only actually copying what the actual culprit has been doing. Another student who is also replicating what the actual culprit has been doing is brought in into the principal’s office. It seems like this may be a trend at the school and will only make catching the culprit even more difficult (which one is it?!).

As the chase for the culprit gets more intense and time is running out, the principal becomes more strict and irrational. He announces that in exchange for clues or reports about the culprit, he will give students merit points. So basically, he wants the students to report each other and he will reward them by giving them points. Wow, just wow. He also adds that whoever has too many demerit points will be punished through suspension or expulsion. Of course the students aren’t too happy with the new system and although they mention talks of trust and reliance on one another, nothing is guaranteed and no one is safe.

Eunho is once again stuck in a difficult position. She blames herself for the new system that the principal created, recalling the meeting that she had with the principal prior to the announcement. Because she refused to catch the culprit herself, the principal then turned to the rest of the students to make them responsible for catching the culprit instead. Eunho worries that she won’t be able to graduate and attend college if she gets too many demerit points.

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But that’s not the case as a counselor she meets up with comments that Eunho can still make it into Hanguk University as long as she earns third place in the competition (yaaay! something good is happening to Eunho for once lol) and submits her student records. But that’s what is holding Eunho back – her student record. She plans on catching the culprit (who the drama has been referring to as “X”) to get rid of all her demerit points.

Eunho catches up with Kyung-woo (ahhhh!) at school and together they discuss about X. She notices that he talks about X as if he is the culprit himself, but he refutes any possibility of him being X. He comments that there are things he knows, but that he just won’t tell anyone. Hmm, maybe Kyung-woo knows who X is.

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We return to the ending scene of episode 2. Eunho discovers a note in her locker that hints how Dae-hwi nor Tae-woon were found to be anywhere at the site of the drone incident. Just when she finishes reading the note, both boys confront her in the classroom. They talk about the culprit and taunt each other in the process as if to scare the other about getting caught. Dae-hwi ends the conversation by offering his help and support to Eunho, leaving Tae-woon to get flustered and march out the classroom.

Eunho brings this detail to Teacher Shim’s attention, but he dismisses it. On the day of the drone incident, he had given Dae-hwi permission to leave to work on a school banner and Tae-woon was away because he wasn’t feeling well.

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As Dae-hwi walks on campus, he passes by Kyung-woo who’s practicing on his guitar. Kyung-woo stops Dae-hwi to ask him about the drone and the banner he had apparently be working on. Dae-hwi seems flustered at both questions and walks away in a hurry.

Tae-woon joins Eunho outside on a bench where they then converse about X. Eunho is drawn to the possibility that X flown in the drone to possibly save Eunho from being further punished, but Tae-woon doesn’t believe so. Why would X want to be associated with someone like Eunho? While this doesn’t help answer Eunho’s question about what the intent behind X’s doing was, she is certain about one thing: Tae-woon is definitely not X.

Eunho shares the note with Sarang and together they discuss the possibility of either Dae-hwi or Tae-woon being X. But it’s impossible. Dae-hwi is the #1 ranked student in the school and he’s the President. And then Tae-woon is the director’s son who even teachers bow down too. So why would neither of them do something to the school? Things get confusing as they try to dig deeper into it. Although they conclude that X isn’t Dae-hwi or Tae-woon, there’s still a small possibility that either of them can be X as both of them weren’t there during the actual incident.

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This conversation extends over at dinner with Eunho and her family. They start making guesses on whether X is Dae-hwi or Tae-woon but is shortly stopped by Dad who grows frustrated at the lack of attention he’s getting over his cooking. To cheer him up (and to be able to eat the food), Eunho and her brother praise their dad’s cooking.

The next morning at school, Eunho walks through the halls of the school only to find Tae-woon entering the principal’s office. She recalls the conversation that her and her family had the night before at dinner about X. Her brother justifies that Tae-woon could possibly be X because he had the money to purchase a drone in the first place. Alarmed, she also enters the principal’s office to catch up with Tae-woon, but to her surprise fails to find him in the room. It’s empty. Where did he go?

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(OMG CAN YOU HEAR THAT? THAT’S MY HEART BEATING)

As she looks around the room, she hears the principal getting closer and closer to his office. Terrified, she rushes to find a spot to hide. Someone then grabs her arm just in time to prevent her from getting caught. The principal enters and leaves his office without noticing anything and we discover that it was Tae-woon who had grabbed Eunho to hide with him (oooh okay Tae-woon, I see what you did there). He explains that he was sent by his dad on a mission which was why he was in the office.

They exit the office only to get caught by the Principal and Vice Principal (Park Chul-min). Tae-woon reasons that he was in the room because he came to drop something off from his father. While they both let Tae-woon go, the principal and vice principal become suspicious of Eunho especially since she’s still questioned to be X. But Tae-woon comes to her defense. There’s no way she can be X or be an accomplice of X. Who would want to work with someone as dim-witted and slow as her? This surprises both the principal and vice principal who was not expecting this from Tae-woon at all even after he walks away.

Eunho grows angry at how Tae-woon called her dim-witted. But Tae-woon argues back that he only said that to save her from the dangerous situation she was in. She finds it hard to believe at first, but quiets down when Tae-woon suggests that maybe he can report her to the principal in exchange for merit points.

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The principal and vice principal are in the office deciphering what Tae-woon meant before he walked away. Earlier, he had told them both that he would “tell his father” before leaving and walking away. But what did he mean by “tell his father” and what exactly would he report to his father? The realm of possibilities worry both principal’s, but they reassure themselves by mentioning about the trap that they have set up. All that needs to happen left is the culprit biting the bait they have set up and everything will be finished. Uh-oh… what’s gonna happen now? This is making me anxious. (I would also like to note how comical and funny the two veteran actors are even though this situation calls for seriousness lol).

Teacher Shim is alone in the teacher’s office room working. But too many things are on his mind that he can’t concentrate. He’s especially frustrated over the new merit system and in order to relieve himself of the stress and frustration, he role plays the staff and faculty members and what they would possibly say in regards to the merit system. Principal and Vice Principal believe it’s a great idea and the other teachers don’t find any faults with it (omg he’s doing such great job mocking everyone hahaha. This scene is gold! And he’s so good at this. How was the actor able to do this??). But the one-man role playing comes to a stop when Teacher Koo gets out of his seat in the teacher’s office room. HA, so Teacher Shim wasn’t alone the entire time. He shares a few words with Teacher Shim before leaving, causing Teacher Shim to be even more stressful and regretful. Maybe check next time to see if you’re actually alone Teacher Shim! Haha.

With the new merit system intact, charts indicating how many demerit points each student has is publicly displayed at school. Sarang has zero, Eunho has 39, and Dae-hwi has five. How does Dae-hwi have five? Who could have possibly reported him?

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Turns out that one of Dae-hwi’s close friends Hee-chan had reported him. He did it with the thought of his rank in his mind as he is only one rank below Dae-hwi so if Dae-hwi gets enough demerit points he’ll fall in rank and Hee-chan can come out on top. Other students grow frustrated and mad at the demerit points they got and start questioning each other. One student in particular confronts Teacher Shim about his points, but finds out that he was caught smoking at school which would account for why he got the points. Teacher Shim still doesn’t seem comfortable with the idea of the new merit system, but there’s nothing he can do about it. Teacher Koo emphasizes that they’re just preparing the students for the real world – the real world that is even more harsh and violent out there.

The student who had been caught smoking returns to the classroom angry. As he tries to find out who the person behind the picture is, he gets caught up in a fight with another classmate only making things worse. Classmates have gotten so used to these types of situations that they don’t have any energy left in them to care anymore. Tae-woon heads back to nap while Eunho continues to focus on her drawing.

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In Eun-ho’s drawing, she focuses on the new merit system and the corruption behind it using the style of ‘The Wailing’ (OMFGGGGG I’M SO MAD. THEY DID NOT JUST GO THERE LOL I’M LEGITIMATELY SCREAMING). Teacher Shim plays Kwak Do-won’s character in the movie as an officer who visits the school to investigate the cause behind a student’s death at the school. Eunho plays Chun Woo-hee’s character and accuses the principal’s merit system as the reason for the death (she even throws rocks at Teacher Shim! I’M SO MAD omg lol). Tae-woon and Dae-hwi then show up as X and confuses both Eunho and Teacher Shim on who the culprit is. The best has yet to come as Sarang pops up from behind them in a classroom window and takes pictures of them using her phone, portraying the devil’s (?) role from the actual movie (all of this is so genius and random and I’m so confused right now. Why is this happening? Why this movie out of all movies?). The movie ends and we return to Sarang and Eunho back in the classroom (phew thank goodness. I was enjoying the little parody but I was also getting nervous. Memories of the actual movie came back).

Eunho and Duk-soo do some schoolyard cleaning in order to reduce the amount of demerit points they have. While working, Dae-hwi visits them to give them some refreshing drinks. While Duk-soo is grateful, Eunho grows suspicious. Dae-hwi tries to divert her attention by suggesting that he ask the principal if there’s any way they can reduce their demerit points.

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It’s class time and the students have been assigned to recite the poems they created out loud to the class. Titled “This is all because of X”, Eunho recites her poem saying:

This is all because of X.

Wrongful demerits.

Risk of expulsion.

Student record stinks.

I gave up on college.

Mom came to the teacher’s college

Made to kneel because of someone.

The one who ruined our beloved senior year is a person called ‘X.’

X.

When I call you by your name, you will… die for sure, got it?

Eunho steals glances at different people while reciting her poem, first Tae-woon and Dae-hwi then Teacher Koo and then back to the two boys. She repeats the line “you will die for sure” as she walks back to her seat. HAHAHA. Gold!

When Eunho witnesses Teacher Shim giving Dae-hwi a master key to all the classrooms, she begins to get even more suspicious of him. If he’s one of the only 2 people (the other being the VP) to have access to the master key, maybe he could have used it on the night of the incident to enter the teacher’s office room. Alarmed, Eunho follows him as he leaves the classroom confident that he’s off to do something fishy. However, it’s nothing like what she had expected.

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Turns out that Dae-hwi had left the classroom to meet up with his girlfriend in secret! Just as they’re about to kiss, Tae-woon shows up and distracts Eunho. They leave Dae-hwi and his girlfriend alone and walk off together. Dae-hwi’s girlfriend Nam-joo is upset that he seems to only be with her for her looks, but he proves his love for her by kissing her on the forehead (okay this scene was really random, out of place, and too makjang for me..). Meanwhile, Eunho asks Tae-woon if he’s ever had his first kiss in which he bluffs that he has. HAHAHA. OF COURSE YOU HAVE TAE-WOON, OF COURSE YOU HAVE. He grows jealous when he thinks of how Eunho could possibly date and kiss Jong-geun Sunbae (Kang Min-hyuk’s character from episode one), but that jealousy stops when his friend interrupts their conversation (aww man).

As Eunho studies in her bedroom, her parents and her brother take turns visiting her. Her dad brings her some juice followed by her mother who brings her another cup of juice and then finally her brother who rewards her with some money. Hehe. Such a loving family.

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The next morning, Sarang and Kyung-woo meet each other while waiting at the bus stop. She shows him clips of her favorite idol Issue (played by SF9’s Ro-swoon Ro-woon my precious bby) and compliments his dancing and vocals. But Kyung-woo the guitarist isn’t impressed and claims that her celebrity isn’t all that talented. Offended, Sarang snaps back at him for daring to even attack her favorite idol (LOL WHY DOES SHE REMIND ME OF ME).

At school, students prepare for exams. Sarang and Eunho are talking to each other when Teacher Shim stops the class to make an announcement about a new transfer student. Upon seeing who the transfer student is, Sarang stops everything in her tracks and can only focus on who’s right in front of her. It can’t be. This can’t be real. How does one get so lucky?

The transfer student is none other than Sarang’s favorite idol, Kang Hyun Il AKA Issue. He introduces himself to the class, but all Sarang can focus on is him and gushes at the sight of her favorite idol (HER FACE IS ME WHEN I SEE BTS HAHAHA. I CAN SO RELATE).

Eunho gets ready to head out to the drawing competition at Hanguk University. But her bike tire is flat once again so she has no way of getting there. Luckily, she catches Tae-woon who is also preparing to leave school and asks him for a ride on his motorcycle. But the only way he’ll take her to her competition is if she asks him politely and refer to him as “Oppa” (OMGGGGGGGG HE NEEDS TO BE STOPPED. STOPPED THIS SECOND).

In the next scene, we see Eunho and Tae-woon riding on his motorcycle (OMG SHE CALLED HIM OPPA I’M CRYING). He drops her off at Hanguk University just in time for the competition. Eunho thanks him before running off but forgets to take her helmet off. He shoots her a reminder through text and waits on his motorcycle.

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Bit Na and another one of Eunho’s classmates are in the teacher’s office room, questioning Teacher Shim on the merit-demerit system that has been stressing the students out. Some teachers in the office room overhear them and start blaming Eunho for the creation of the system. Since she didn’t want to catch X herself, the principal created the system so the students could. Upon hearing this, Bit Na and the classmate march over to the classroom bewildered. Everyone founds out that the system was created due to Eunho through Bit Na and when Dae-hwi tries to stand up for Eunho by claiming that it’s not Eunho’s fault Bit Na discloses that it is because of her. Teacher Shim said so.

Shocked and hurt, Eunho heads outside to take her mind off some things. She keeps herself busy by drawing, but is interrupted by 3 Sunbae students who blame her for the merit-demerit system that is stressing them out. Angry, they take away her drawing sketchpad from her to get revenge. But this bullying doesn’t last for long when savior Tae-woon swoops in to save the day. He grabs Eunho’s drawing sketchpad back and manages to get the 3 bullies to flee. Eunho is handed her sketchpad back, but she isn’t too happy. She feels ashamed and embarrassed.

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Eunho returns to the classroom only to find one of her notebooks in her locker soaked from water. Angry, she marches to the principal’s office and reminds him once again that if she was to catch X he’ll get rid of all her demerit points and even write her a letter of recommendation. Outside, Eunho even snaps at Tae-woon who asks that she thank him. But she’s not and she doesn’t. She’s not thankful at all and tells him the same thing she told the principal – she’ll catch X and when she does, she’ll kill him.

It’s a sad day for everyone. Tae-woon spends some time alone on the rooftop of a building, reminiscing about the past memories he had with his best friends Dae-hwi and Joong-gi. It was just supposed to be a normal fun day, but on that day, things took a turn for the worse. While riding their motorcycles, Tae-woon’s friend Joong-gi gets into an accident and passes away. Tae-woon cries, feeling heart-broken and guilty for the accident. Eunho also takes the time to remember Joong-gi, placing a bouquet of flowers on the same street that he passed away on.

The day is familiar to Dae-hwi as well even as he’s busy studying for the upcoming college entrance exam. Also glancing at the watch that signified his friendship with Tae-woon and Joong-gi, he thinks about his friend who passed away and comes close to crying as tears form in his eyes.

Tae-woon’s father wants him to stop riding the motorcycle as it just brings back bad memories of the accident, but Tae-woon refuses to stop.

It’s another day of school. Everyone’s minding their own business and doing their own thing when Tae-woon finds his bag and watch on the floor in the classroom. He becomes even more furious when he notices that his watch broke. Who was the one who threw his stuff onto the ground and caused his watch to break? As he questions the classroom for answers, no one dares to say anything or speak up. Everyone is too afraid. Everyone except Dae-hwi.

Dae-hwi yells at Tae-woon to stop and then commands everyone in the classroom to leave. All the classmates head out in a hurry including Eunho who is dragged out by Duk-soo.

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(OMG I CAN FEEL THE INTENSITY FROM HERE)

It gets more intense between Tae-woon and Dae-hwi. Dae-hwi calls Tae-woon’s beloved watch “garbage” which angers him even more than he already is. They get into a long and intense fight with each other with Dae-hwi calling Tae-woon a murderer and Tae-woon exposing Dae-hwi as the potential culprit.

They’re at each other’s necks again when Eunho barges into the classroom, shocked and worried by the horrible and scary sight she sees in front of her.

My Thoughts:

GAAAAAAAAAAAAAH. SO INTENSE. I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO SAY OR HOW TO FEEL.

I’m glad that we got some background context and story on what happened between Dae-hwi and Tae-woon. While I expected the drama to provide us with their back story, I didn’t expect it to be so soon into the drama. But I think the amount of time they used in this episode to cover it was adequate enough and made me satisfied but still crave more. We find out what happened that caused them to drift apart and go from best friends to enemies without seeing exactly everything else that unfolded after the accident (which I assume the drama will hopefully show to us in later episodes). The episode did a good job in introducing the problem and now what’s left is to see the aftermath between Dae-hwi and Tae-woon and then hopefully a solution where the two boys return to being friends (or at least just not enemies).

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I think what’s the most interesting and touching to me is that even though Dae-hwi and Tae-woon are obviously no longer as close as they once used to be and in fact show hints of hate and despise towards each other, we can tell that they still highly value the friendship that they once had with Joong-gi and how traumatic and affected they were by the accident. Yes, they might not like each other, but they still can’t forget about what they once had and used to be and I also would like to go as far as to say they miss how things used to be. I’m curious as to what happened after the accident that left the boys in a position where they’re grabbing at each other’s necks and punching each other in the face when before they had their arms around each other and had friendship watches. Instead of supporting each other at the news of their friend’s death, why and how did they come to hating each other?

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I enjoyed the pacing of this particular sub-plot in this episode because it didn’t give away too much but still gave away enough for us so that by the end of the episode when Tae-woon and Dae-hwi were throwing punches at each other we understood why they were doing that. While I enjoyed this episode and thought for the most part it was well-paced, I did notice that it didn’t have too much substance to work with and that they were dragging the whole merit-demerit system plot which had already taken up the majority of the episode and can only go on for so long. So in a way I’m glad that the episode brought in another sub-plot and focused on the complicated relationship between the two boys so that we were also occupied with something else and not just the usual merit-demerit system stuff.

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Speaking of the merit system, wow, the principal is really going at it isn’t he? It’s like the school version of the hunger games. Of course, our Eunho is still heavily affected by it, but she’s no longer affected by herself. Now the rest of the students are also facing issues and challenges with the system and everyone is impacted in one way or the other. I like how the chase for X just keeps escalating more and more. Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse it does. Not only is Eunho at risk now, but everyone else literally is as well and they’re willing to let go of friendships or bonds built with other classmates to save themselves. While Dae-hwi’s 5 point demerit came as a surprise to many, it wasn’t really a surprise that his close friend was the one who reported him – especially when the drama has emphasized over and over again just how crucial and important ranks are at school. It makes for an especially interesting case when you see the lengths people are willing to go to save themselves even if that means risking the friendships that you have with others. People aren’t always who you think they are.

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(omgggg look at the way he’s staring at her *swoons*)

My wish was answered and in this episode Tae-woon did play a bigger role in the whole “let’s-just-blame-Eunho-for-everything” conflict. Before I had voiced that I would like to see him do more for Eunho and be more involved by advocating for her using his position in power to do that so I was so satisfied to see what he did for her multiple times in this episode. While I would ultimately like to see Eunho be the winner in the end and stick up for herself because I know fully well she’s perfectly capable of doing that and doesn’t necessarily need anyone to do the saving for her, she has so many odds stacked up against her right now that a little help from someone who genuinely cares about her wouldn’t hurt. I think of Tae-woon as that support network that is invisible and empty not only for Eunho but at the school in general because everyone’s so busy battling against each other for merit points. I’m glad that he offered her his support even if at times she didn’t want it or refused to acknowledge that help. I especially liked it even more that he didn’t help her just in regards to the X situation even though the majority of his help stemmed from that. He also showed her support in other aspects like her dream of winning the competition by giving her a ride to the competition. All in all, Eunho’s in a difficult position right now at school because everyone is against her – from the faculty to even her own classmates. No one believes her and everyone hates her. So it was nice to see someone help her when it seemed like things were getting hopeless. Sometimes not all hope is lost when you think it is and for Tae-woon and Eunho, they’re each other’s hope (and I’m so happy we got more Tae-woon and Eunho scenes in episode 3! More please! More!)

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While I enjoyed this episode, I noticed that there were many things happening that at times it felt disjointed. The majority of the drama focused on the merit-demerit system which I appreciated for consistency. Yes, it is ruining the lives of the students and everyone hates it, but they necessarily can’t do anything about it because it could help boost their ranks which they want. I think the drama did a good job in setting this up and getting this particular message across. However, the sudden shift into Tae-woon and Dae-hwi’s complex friendship towards the end of the episode was an abrupt change that I wasn’t expecting. Eunho spoke about catching X so often and then in the next scene Tae-woon was thinking about his best friend who had passed away and so was Dae-hwi and Eunho. While this plot does involve our main characters, it’s a plot entirely on its own and if the drama can find a way to weave this storyline into the overall drama in general without making it too choppy like how it did this episode then I think the drama will turn out fine. I also didn’t like the one particular scene of Dae-hwi and his girlfriend meeting at school in secret. It seemed so out of place and as if it was a scene from another drama. It really didn’t go well with the rest of episode at all and I hope the drama never attempts to do anything like this ever again. Lol.

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Some of the characters in this drama are frustrating as well. I don’t really have a reason to care for any of the other characters other than our main characters, but why does everyone have to be so dramatic and always gotta be picking fights at each other? I understand you’re mad, but does there have to be a multiple fights in one day or everyday? It gets especially boring and frustrating to watch when this is all that is happening (especially in this episode alone) so I’m glad that the drama brought in the Dae-hwi and Tae-woon friendship plot. Also, we have the addition of a new character Issue (I wished he was given a much better stage name. Why did they give him that name?!). I’m a fan of SF9 and Ro-woon’s at the top of my bias list so I’m glad to see him here. I wonder what kind of purpose he’ll serve in the drama in relation to X or if he’s here rather more for Sarang and to serve as a possible love interest for her. It’ll be interesting. And as usual, I’m still very much in love with Seo Ji-hoon who plays Kyung-woo. I become smitten every time he’s on screen with or without his guitar and his character is still as interesting as he was in the first two episodes.

I’m still in disbelief (in a comical and jokingly way) that the drama dared to do a parody of ‘The Wailing.’ Never in a million years would I have imagined seeing familiar scenes from a horror movie in a youth school drama. It was so funny and awesome, but still scary because of the original movie. I can’t stop thinking about the parody and think it might just be one of my most favorite parodies ever in a drama because it was actually well-done and made sense. Props to the writer (or should I say Eunho) for weaving in the parody not only in an entertaining and hilarious way but in a way where it made sense by connecting the parody back to the larger issue of the merit-demerit system. It was an excellent execution and could have gone wrong in many ways, but it didn’t because everything made sense and the issue was in the parody just like how it’s an issue in the actual drama.

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Also, am I the only one who feels a bit iffy and bothered by Sarang? For the most part, she seems like a cool character, but I especially hate it when she points out Eunho’s rank and school records as if Eunho isn’t already aware, embarrassed, and insecure about it. She doesn’t have faith in her best friend getting into Hanguk University and is constantly reminding Eunho that she’s basically a failure. I don’t know – this made me upset. I’d like to see Sarang be a lot more supportive towards Eunho especially in regards to her academics. Yes, the girl has a shot of making it into college even if she’s not the smartest or successful student. Stop putting her down please just because you’re doing better.

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(LOOK AT HIS PRECIOUS SMILE. ISN’T HE SO PRECIOUS? HE’S ADORABLE!)

As for Tae-woon, I’m in love with Kim Jung-hyun! I actually think he’s becoming one of my favorite newly discovered actors. I had never seen him in another drama prior to this so this is my first time seeing him in a drama ever and I think I’m falling in love with him! I love the way he portrays bad boy Tae-woon, pretending that he doesn’t care about her but waiting for her when school ends and giving her rides on his beloved motorcycle. Or like how he was a little jealous just thinking about Eunho and her college sunbaenim and what they could be like together. He’s so cute and adorable and while I don’t think he’s the greatest actor, he’s definitely growing and have sharp acting skills. I have a feeling I’ll be just as in love with Jung-hyun as much as I was with Seo In-guk when I watched ‘High School King of Conduct’ (and I was IN LOVE with Seo In-Guk during that drama. Like I was lowkey obsessed with him). It seems like history might be repeating itself over again x)

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I really hope that Teacher Shim will one day have the courage and audacity to say what’s on his mind and speak up. Of course that’s a lot easier said than done and he isn’t necessarily in a position where he can say how he feels without being punished for it, but I think he’ll get there at that point one day. I think the drama is making him out to be a weak and hesitant teacher who wants to advocate for his students and the corruption behind the school and struggles to do so, but in later episodes he’ll transform into a strong teacher who is able to garner enough courage and support to finally advocate for himself and his students. He’ll transform from the weak and underestimated teacher to a strong and confident one who’ll give up everything he has to stand up for what’s right even if that means losing his job in the process.

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Of course, I don’t think this is going to be possible without the help and collaboration of the students though. In order to get to a point where the corruption and suffering stops and everyone is stable again, maybe – just maybe – everyone needs to stop thinking for themselves and instead come together to rebel like how the culprit did. Hopefully the students will realize that in order to survive, it’s not exposing and calling each other out that will help them. It’s understanding that their one enemy isn’t each other but rather the unequal system set up by the principal and when they come upon this realization, then they can merge and align with one another. So instead of trying to find out who X is and giving up everything that they built for themselves along the way to do that, they should instead all collectively become X so that they can earn the the win they want and deserve in the end.

Source

[What Mary Thinks] Show Me the Money Season 6 episode 4

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AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH I’m screaming. There were so many emotions and thoughts and screaming while watching this episode and this is actually the first time that I’m writing up a post while watching the episode at the same time because I just had to talk about the episode!

Note: What was supposed to originally start out as a normal ‘What Mary Thinks’ post somehow turned into a SMTM6 episode 4 recap/rant post with lots of screaming and !!!! and words so I apologize beforehand how out of control this post got. Before I knew it, I just started saying so many things and I eventually lost track of what I was supposed to write or what the purpose of this post was or how this post was actually supposed to be written. I apologize. Future posts won’t be like this I swear maybe.

Episode 4 starts off really interesting and great and intense for once! We finally get some screen time of some of the more popular and stronger contestants on the show after 3 episodes, including Hash Swan, Hanhae, Sleepy, Nucksal, and female rapper Ato.

Hash Swan was able to get his name out there with last year’s season but because last year’s season had a lot more stronger contestants he didn’t stand out as much. But his appearance on last season really raised eyebrows and curiosity about him that when he came back this season as a contestant, people knew to look out for him and to watch out for him as a possible threat and contender for the win because of last season. I think Hash Swan is also aware of that himself as he’s been performing safely but strongly without showing off too much yet because he’s to save his stronger performances for later rounds. In the 1 vs. 1 battle, he messed up a little bit so his position as a contestant on the show could have been eliminated had his opponent been better and stronger. But luckily, Hash Swan made it out alive and passed on to the next round. I’m definitely looking forward to his future performances because while I’m not rooting for him personally, he has a unique voice and pretty decent rapping skills so I can see him staying in the competition for as long as he did last season or maybe even further this year.

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Hanhae FINALLY got some screen time in this episode and he really did not disappoint. It just makes you wonder why Mnet did not show him in the earlier episodes, but it also makes everything okay because the wait was totally worth it. In his 1 vs. 1 battle, he easily kills it and impresses the producers with his flawless rapping and fun stage presence. I’m just glad to have finally gotten to see him on the show because we’ve been waiting for weeks for that to happen. And it’s even better that once he does get time on the show he delivers as usual. Definitely excited for Hanhae’s future performances and anticipating to see what he has to show in the future.

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After the passes of Hash Swan and Hanhae, I was feeling good about the episode and then Sleepy came out for his 1 vs. 1 battle and also passed the round! By this point, I’m super happy and relieved that Sleepy – a contestant I’m rooting for – passed. I think his win (as well as Hanhae’s win) was well-deserved and I actually found his third round to be his strongest yet in my opinion. Sleepy’s getting better and better every round and if he keeps this up I can see him giving everyone (*coughs* Nucksal *coughs*) a run for a shot at winning the show.

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But of course, not everything can go well and the 1 vs. 1 battle between Nucksal and female rapper Ato definitely showed us that (why can’t I just watch this show without stressing and frowning? T___T). Upon finding out that they were going against each other, I became so devastated because it was obvious who was going to win. I like both contestants, but I especially love Ato just because I found her second round performance to be really good, entertaining, fun, and unique and to me, she stood out not only among the female rappers but out of all the contestants in general. She’s funky, she’s smooth, she’s playful and it was great to see her be so comfortable and have so much fun on stage. With that being said, upon finding out she was going against Nucksal, I just knew there was going to be almost no chance that she was going to pass unless Nucksal messed up immensely or did something really bad. I never felt so painful while watching SMTM before because I want Ato to be on the show a lot longer because I believe that she was one of the stronger contestants on the show and could have also given some contestants a run for their money.

It’s unfortunate that during the battle, she forgot some of her lyrics and was really nervous to perform. I think a part of that was because she was going against Nucksal who is obviously one of the strongest contestants on the show and maybe let that pressure get too much to her. If she had performed confidently without any mistakes like how she did in the second round then I think there could have been a good chance that she would have won against Nucksal*sigh* But we’ll never know and it makes me sad just thinking about what could have happened. It also makes me lowkey despise Nucksal for choosing Ato out of all contestants (in a jokingly way). Why would he do something like that? *sighs again* This battle got me feeling so devastated and sad and upset because Ato is so great and I wanted to see more of her. I’m hoping some label or someone will pick her up and take her in because she’s so great and talented and good at rapping (if no one has yet). I definitely want to see more of her. And of course, as expected, Nucksal passed onto the next round. Bye Ato, it was great watching you rap while you were on the show. You will be greatly missed 😦

Wow, we got a few more seconds of Olltii but it wasn’t for the reasons I wanted or was expecting. It was because we were shown clips of him getting chewed out by a contestant named JJK (wow, you know you’re total trash for BTS when you automatically think of Jungkook) who’s also known for his freestyle rapping just like how Olltii is. Surprisingly, even after messing up with his lyrics because he was freestyling for the performance he passed the round (only roots for him b/c of his initials). His freestyling that lead to his mistake in the performance actually was his strength as well as the producers were largely impressed by his freestyle rap even though he had messed up. Hmm, this will be interesting to see.

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OMG OKAY NEVER MIND. OLLTII IS HERE AND WE CAN ALL FINALLY NOW LIVE IN PEACE. I REPEAT – OLLTII IS HERE (why does he look like an owl omg i’m crying). I honestly wasn’t expecting to see him at all considering we’ve gotten pretty much nothing of him the past 3 weeks so it’s a miracle to be seeing him on my screen while I’m writing this post and watching the episode at the same time. I’m super happy to see him finally get some time on the show because he deserves it. As overdue as this is, I guess it’s better late than never right? The thing is that I had actually forgot about Olltii because we were getting nothing of him the past few episodes, but after finally remembering that he’s actually a contestant on the show I’m totally rooting for him now. It’s funny and ironic how things turn out because I hated him when he was on SMTM3 (b/c he was creating shit with B.I. and Bobby) but over time have come to really liking him somehow (idk don’t ask me how, it just happened lol) so now I’m rooting for him on SMTM too. His 1 vs. 1 battle was an easy win for him and I’m excited to see what he has up his sleeves in the future episodes. Let’s go Olltii, let’s go.

This episode is causing me so much stress. “STRESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS” – Gary. AHHHHHHHHH I’M PULLING MY HAIR OUT. PUNCHNELLO. WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYY. WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY. YOU SHOULD HAVE BEEN MORE PREPARED OR AS CHOIZA SAID, YOU SHOULD HAVE JUST FREESTYLED OR SOMETHING. OR JUST DO AND SAY SOMETHING. Ahh, it’s such a sad turn-out. I like Punchnello and have listened to a few of his songs and was totally rooting for him to win against Myundo so it’s unfortunate that he lost. He’s a strong rapper and could have been another underdog of the show and then swoop up from behind and surprise everyone. All the producers’ reactions to Punchnello’s second performance was so funny because I felt exactly the same way as all of them. Everyone saying that he’s a strong rapper and it’s so regretful and unfortunate that he didn’t have another verse prepared and then Tiger Jk and Bizzy just continually shouting out “WHY?! WHY?!” Lol. Ughhh. It’s so sad and unfortunate because Punchnello’s talented and could have made it far on this show.

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This also has to be one of the strangest and most bizarre incidents to have happened during the 1 vs. 1 battle. From all the seasons I’ve seen of SMTM (since season 3), I don’t recall any contestant not having a verse prepared (even when there were ties, contestants usually were still prepared with something or just freestyled) so this battle alone is surprising to me with what happened. *sigh* Oh Punchnello, better luck and effort next time. Okay but I wanna know which of the producer teams didn’t vote for Punchnello. Cus if y’all had just voted for him the first round none of us would be going through this pain. WHO DID IT?! WHICH ONE OF Y’ALL VOTED FOR MYUNDO INSTEAD FOR THE FIRST ROUND. REVEAL YOURSELVES. Why the producers were so devastated upon Punchnello’s elimination when half of them didn’t vote for him… like… y’all need to stop being so indecisive and fake and just be real with yourselves and who you really wanna vote for. Lol. We all know y’all biased anyways. OMG THEY EVEN GAVE PUNCHNELLO A MINUTE OF SCREEN TIME TO SAY HIS FAREWELLS. I’M CRYINGGGGG. I don’t even know why I’m reacting like this though because I didn’t even care or root for him. I don’t know. Maybe it’s just because he was good and I liked him better than Myundo. So sad. Probably one of the biggest upsets in SMTM history along with the elimination of Ato for me.

ANYWAYS MY YOUNG B MADE IT ONTO THE NEXT ROUND BUT MNET DIDN’T SHOW HIS BATTLE SO I’M LOWKEY UPSET BUT IT’S ALL GOOD B/C HE PASSED. THAT’S ALL THAT COUNTS. And Truedy passed as well but she just needs to leave already. Why do they still have her on the show. I don’t get it. It should have been her against Ato. We would have known who the true winner would have been then. /zips my lips/

Mnet is doing it again with the weird and odd editing where they show the rest of the results from the prior episode and then the next round within the same episode. I hate it because the transition isn’t smooth, but I don’t think they’re gonna change this editing so I should just get used to it.

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It’s another day of performances but this time it’s the producers’ turn to perform (this is also another favorite segment of mines out of the entire season). The tables have turned and instead of performing it’s now the contestants’ turn to watch the producers perform. I enjoy this segment a lot just because it’s so great and fascinating to watch these producers – who have created a name or status for themselves in the Korean hip-hop industry – perform and just do the thing that they’re good at which is rapping. It also makes for an interesting case because through these performances you kind of see whether the producers are actually worthy of being producers on the show or whether they’re there for other purposes instead (like producing for example). But also, I just like seeing the contestants’ reactions to the performances and them jamming along to the songs. It’s great.

OKAY BUT GAEKO IS TOTALLY KILLING IT. Despite being in the industry for much longer than the others, he’s still got it. He’s so good. GAEKO IS A MONSTER. But when is Dynamic Duo gonna perform to ‘BAAAM’? Please. I just wanna hear that song one last time. Aww, they didn’t perform ‘BAAAM’, but they definitely still got it. It was a great performance by Dynamic Duo (my childhood heroes).

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OH WHAT TIGER JK AND BIZZY IS PERFORMING NEXT? THEY SHOULD HAVE SAVED THEM FOR LAST. BEST FOR LAST. I’M UpSEt. BUT OMG THEY SURE DO KNOW HOW TO WORK A CROWD. WERK IT TIGER JK AND BIZZY. WERK IT. SHOW ‘EM WHO THE LEGENDS ARE. And yeah, they definitely showed everyone that they will always be legends. Legends only.

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(I have never found Jay Park attractive at all but I gotta admit he looks kind of handsome in that screencap above… maybe that’s the power of AOMG)

Ooh, Illionaire x AOMG is up. I love how once Dok2 puts up the Illionaire sign, everyone just automatically puts it up as well. It’s like an automatic reaction haha. While I’m not the biggest fan of Jay Park’s rapping, he’s definitely got the vocal talent as well as the dancing and the stage presence. I think I appreciate his stage energy more so than his rapping because boy knows how to put on a concert. Man, he is going at it hard isn’t he? LOL. Even pulling a bboy dance move on stage. Who are you?? LOL. Anyways, although not my favorite team, you can’t deny that Jay Park and Dok2 know how to put on a great stage with their rapping and stage presence. They aren’t at the top of the Khip-hop industry right now for no reason.

OOH NOW IT’S DEAN AND ZICO. Dean’s singing is so good. OOH BERMUDA TRIANGLE OKAY. I MEAN IT’S NOT THE SAME WITHOUT CRUSH THERE BUT YA KNOW, THAT’S NONE OF MY PROBLEM OR ANYTHING. I know Zico can do better because he has done better so I feel like his performance fell a little flat compared to the other producers and to what he has shown before. It might also be because Dean’s a vocalist while Zico’s a rapper so it was more difficult to coordinate or to perform songs together. While I think the team did great, I think I prefer the other performances more.

OMFG WHAT ARE THE PRODUCERS DOING? I’M SO MAD. WHY ARE THEY KNEEING ON THE GROUND TO GET A CLOSER LISTEN TO DEAN’S “R&B” PART. I’M SO MAD. I’M SCREAMING. WHY ARE THEY LIKE DIS? They’re so hilarious and dorky and funny. Ahhhh. LOOK AT THEM. But honestly, it’s so nice seeing the producers joke around and be this comfortable with one another because it’s not often that you get something as weird, random, dorky, and funny as this in SMTM. I’m glad the producers know to joke around and have some fun and not always be so serious (I actually think this season’s producers might be the most friendly and playful with one another yet). This is such a gold moment in SMTM history. I will never get over this.

Anyways, the contestants vote for which producer team was their favorite. Results to this will be shown next week. And as always, as long as my Young B, Woo Wonjae, Sleepy, Killagramz, and Olltii is still in the show then I’m still in as well.

Source

Source 2: Mnet Official @ youtube

Teaser for ‘Age of Youth’ Season 2 is finally here and I’m excited

JTBC drama ‘Age of Youth’ first aired last summer and was known for its cast, the down-to-earth friendships between the characters, and the interesting storyline and plots! After announcing that the youth drama would be returning with another season this summer, the first teaser to the second season has finally been released and I’m exciteddd!

Although the teaser doesn’t show much, you can find the same house that the five girls lived in together last year in the trailer with a familiar song that was widely played from the first season of the drama playing in the background. Towards the end of the video, 4 of the girls open the door shocked and surprised to find whoever it is at the door and unfortunately for us, it seems like we’re gonna have to wait to see who they opened the door for.

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I remember watching ‘Age of Youth’ last year and just absolutely falling in love with how easy-going but intense the drama was. It was a nice, breezy, funny, and youthful drama – something different from everything else that was airing at that time and from what viewers had expected of it. Because the drama focused on the lives of the girls as housemates and their transition from strangers to housemates to best friends all the while balancing out school, work, relationships, and love, I could find myself relate to the characters to some extent and I think it was that connection to the characters that I was able to heavily enjoy the drama. Some of my most favorite scenes throughout the drama was between the Sunbae and the Maknae of the house and their relationship (I could not stop squealing at how cute they were together! They were seriously at one point the main reason why I was watching the drama) or badass Yi-na standing up for the girls and looking out for them to make sure that they weren’t doing anything rebellious or bad. While I didn’t expect the drama to be so intense, dramatic, and mysterious with Yi-na’s storyline (which I think to an extent was off-putting) because I didn’t like the mood and tone that it created, I still enjoyed the drama overall and am glad that wishes of a second season have been answered. I expected the first season to be a lot more cheerful and carefree, but the drama went a totally different direction from what I was expecting so that threw me off a little bit. I’m curious as to if the second season is going to continue with this dark and mysterious tone or if it’s going to do what I had wanted the first season to do which was focus on the girls and their college life. Whatever it is, the first season was largely slept on when it aired last year and I’m hoping that the second season will be just as consistent and interesting as last year but more popular this time.

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There have been some changes to the cast that I admit will change the way that I will view the second season. Our Maknae Eun-jae who was originally played by Park Hye-soo will not be returning to the second season due to schedule conflicts and will instead be replaced by actress Ji-woo. This actress change will definitely feel weird and different especially because I loved the way that Hye-soo portrayed Eun-jae and because I grew to appreciating Hye-soo’s portrayal as Eun-jae by the end of the drama just because she did such a wonderful job at it. It’s gonna be weird to see a new face playing the same character and being in love with the same guy that was in last year’s season (how I can accept a new female actress to be in love with the same Sunbae? I just can’t T___T). This change in actresses makes me sad because Eun-jae was one of my favorite characters (alongside Yi-na) and I think Hye-soo’s portrayal as the character was a huge reason for that. I’m going to definitely miss seeing Hye-soo in the second season and it won’t be the same without her.

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Yi-na who was played by Ryu Hwa-young will only be making a cameo this season and this is another change that is devastating. I believe that her controversies with T-ara was what resulted in this outcome and it’s unfortunate because her character was what really made last year’s season so different, empowering, and crucial and in addition to that, Hwa-young herself did a great job in portraying Yi-na and really proved to everyone that she could act. I’ve been a fan of Hwa-young since she was in T-ara and have been supporting her ever since so I was happy to see her in last year’s season. Upon hearing the news that she was only going to be making a cameo in this year’s season I was devastated. Even if one doesn’t necessarily like Hwa-young, I think we can all agree that her character in the drama was crucial and important to the success and progress of the drama itself and it’s gonna be weird to see her not be in the drama as part of the squad. I could see how the drama will explain her removal from the drama plot-wise though and will probably mention it within the first few episodes as to why she’s no longer in the second season. But I don’t know. I grew to really warming up to and liking all the characters and cast from the first season so it’s gonna be weird and different seeing new faces in the second season. I’m hoping that despite the cast changes, I can still enjoy the drama without noticing too many differences and maybe even enjoy it enough to do recaps of it. I don’t know – we’ll see.

 

There are also new additions to characters in the second season including SHINee’s Onew, Choi Ara who will be playing their new housemate, and cutie Kim Min-suk. I’m looking forward to these new additions and what kind of roles they will play in the drama and how they will intertwine in the lives of our five main characters. The first season heavily emphasized on the friendships and relationships between the girls so as usual, here’s to hoping that the second season will do all of that and more, including giving Park Eun-bin the love line that she deserves and has been waiting for.

Source: JTBC Drama @ youtube

Jay Park wants to ride on a yacht with you in his latest MV

Jay Park is back at it again with a new MV, a new catchy and feel-good song produced by the one and only Cha Cha, and new choreography featuring Prepix and 1MILLION. I never knew this song and MV was what I needed until it came out and now this has probably got to be my favorite release so far this summer.

Produced by Cha Cha, ‘Yacht’ is a cute and chill summer R&B release featuring rapper Sik-K who’s a part of Jay Park and Cha Cha’s new label H1GHR Music. Jay released the choreography or dance visual version of the song with choreography by dance group Prepix also featuring popular dancers from 1Million.

Any song by Cha Cha is an ultimate win for me not because I’m biased towards him so I like them automatically but rather because I enjoy most of his songs. I honestly come in not expecting much from AOMG artists, but overtime have come to really warming up to and enjoying their songs – especially the Cha Cha produced songs – because they’re so catchy and great and because Cha Cha’s tracks are so good. ‘Yacht’ is no exception, definitely building off of that catchiness and with Jay Park’s smooth vocals, the song just makes you wanna dance. It gives off such good vibes and it’s a song that’s especially fit for summer.

Jay released the ‘dance visual’ video of the song so I’m wondering if there’s another MV that he’s going to release. In the video, he teased fans through the subtitles by telling them to wait for the english version of the song to come out (typical Jay Park lol) so I’m thinking he might release another MV with the english version? If not, I’m fine with that too because the dance visual is really just what it says it is  – all visuals. The set is your basic normal kind of box set that you often see in SM MV’s, but with the many pretty backdrops and backgrounds, you fall in love with just how beautiful everything looks. Of course, it wouldn’t be a Jay Park MV without girls so there are some girls in here as well as choreography. And just like he did with ‘All I Wanna Do’, 1Million is also back for another Jay Park collaboration. I’m kind of upset with all the different visuals that the MV did when 1Million appeared though because I wanted to see them but the moment they appear so many things are happening in the background and you couldn’t even see their faces and that made me a bit frustrated haha. Just give me my 1Million! I wanna see their faces!

While I like the MV, I had a hard time enjoying the choreography to the song. I don’t know – it was as if the choreography was for a totally different song because it felt like the two didn’t go together at all. Prior to the release of the full MV, he had released a teaser of the choreography to ‘Yacht’ and for some reason I had the hardest time following the choreo and enjoying it because it didn’t seem to match at all. It was if the dance moves had been created for another song and ‘Yacht’ just happened to be playing in the background of the video. This comes as a surprise and shock to me because the choreography to ‘All I Wanna Do’ and ‘Me Like Yuh’ was great and actually matched the songs so I’m feeling a bit puzzled and disappointed with the ‘Yacht’ dance choreography.

Despite the mismatch of the choreography in my opinion, I still enjoy the song and MV regardless and I’m hoping Jay has another MV release up his sleeves, possibly one that’s similar to his ‘My Last‘ MV where he and his AOMG buddies just hung out and had some fun (omg just imagine AOMG x H1GHR Music in the same MV. Now THAT would make for an awesome summer). All in all, ‘Yacht’ is another catchy release by Jay Park and it’ll be interesting to see what steps one of the current leaders in the Korean hip-hop industry takes next with his career.

Source: JAYPARKOFFICIAL @ youtube

Geeks blesses us all with a new comeback!

Summer is finally getting fun as there have been a ton of great new releases within this past week alone including but not limited to EXO, KARD, HOTSHOT, Akmu, Jay Park, and then now Korean hip-hop duo Geeks!

AHHHHHH I’M SCREAMING. AND CRYING. AND SCREAMING BECAUSE I ABSOLUTELY LOVE GEEKS. It’s been a while since their last release and I’ve been waiting forever for another comeback from them. They’ve been releasing singles here and there and features with other artists the past few years, but have finally returned as a duo again this year with a new album titled ‘Fireworks.’

The fangirl in me is crying because I’ve been a loyal fan of Geeks since…forever. It’s been so long now that I don’t even recall when I became a fan of theirs, but all I know is that I love their music and the members themselves. I love how Geeks doesn’t do outright hip-hop or rap music that is all in your face. Rather their music is mellow and chill and that’s what I absolutely love about their songs. I can still jam to their songs and not be annoyed by any jarring auto-tune or bad rapping skills because Geeks 1) makes amazing music 2) they can rap well.

Geeks became especially popular a few years back through songs like ‘Wash Away‘ featuring Ailee and their rendition of ‘Officially Missing You.’ Through songs like these, they were able to steadily get their name out there and then ventured off to do their own solo activities but were also still releasing songs out there as a duo here and there. I’m especially happy that they’ve returned with a new MV and album because I feel like it’s been forever since we’ve last seen them together even though it really hasn’t been. I remember watching member Lil’ Boi on SMTM4 (I swear, all my favorite contestants were on team AOMG I think it was meant to be) and just squealing because he was so cute but also so powerful at rapping. I haven’t been as caught up with Louie, but I did check out his stuff from time to time.

If you would like some song recommendations from Geeks, some of my favorite songs from them include ‘Is You‘ featuring Lena Park, ‘Sometimes‘ featuring Crush, ‘Divin‘, ‘Raining‘ featuring Park Soo Min, and ‘Siren‘ featuring Swings. But these are just some of my favorites, they have a lot more amazing music you should listen to!

As usual, give ‘Fireworks’ a listen if you haven’t already. You won’t regret it as Geeks always delivers with their music. They have never failed to disappoint me which explains why I’m such a huge fan of them even after all these years. They’re a great and talented hip-hop duo and I’m just glad that they’re finally back.

Source: KWorldNation@youtube, HYUK_MUMBLESTASH20 @ youtube, 420힙합 @ youtube, Soribada Music Channel @ youtube, 1theK @ youtube, WKE music @ youtube