k-pop & critical thinking
* please do not hesitate
to ask me to tag triggers
written by M. LEE
My First Love Story
whenever the issue of sexism comes up and it’s kpop-related, i just want to make everyone listen to so cool forever because it’s the best song
There are many men in the world
Men like you I mean
I’m saying don’t become just like
Do you get it, boy?
Be a little bolder, boy
If you want it say that you want it
If you’re a man say it like a man
Don’t regret losing this once in a lifetime chance
Get it, boy
There won’t be anymore, no
Ha! I know you want me
I know you need me
I know I know I know I know
You wanna love me
What are you hesitating for
Approach me, try boy (boy)
Because I’m so cool
Because I’m so cool (oh yes I oh yes I am)
I’m such a so cool woman yeah
(Oh yes I, Oh yes I’m cool cool)
Because I’m so cool (Oh yes I, oh yes I am)
I’m such a so cool woman oh oh yeah
Oh, so this is the song I wanted "The Boys" to be.
Do Korean guys go for non-Korean [white, black, Latina, South Asian, Southeast Asian, Martian] girls?
If there is only one thing to remember about Korean men, it’s this: they are men before they are Korean. Do you have breasts and a vagina? Then at least some Korean men would go for you. It’s relatively uncommon, but hey, interracial dating is always relatively uncommon.
The Korean cannot stress this point enough: KOREAN MEN ARE EXACTLY THE SAME AS ALL MEN. Korean dramas feed upon the fact that you womenfolks are always trying to find some men that do not exist in real world. Please just let it go. No man expects to find a woman who cooks like Rachel Ray and screws like Jenna Jameson. Same should go for your expectation on your man.
I don’t like everything this guy has to say, but it feels good to read this right now.
Soooo I’ve compiled a handy list of kpop music videos that my followers and I have found offensive. If you can think of any other MVs to add to the list, please reblog and link! Also give a description of why the MV is offensive, so people will know what they’re getting into when they click the link.
- How Gee-Big Bang (blackface)
- Yayaya-T-Ara (‘savage’ native americans, “native american chic”)
- Indian Boy-MC Mong (‘savage’ native americans. proceed with caution, this is probably one of the most offensive mvs on this list.)
- With U-Big Bang (stalking)
- Hello-Redroc ft TOP (stalking ex and her new boyfriend, smashing the windshield of their car with them in it)
- Y-MBLAQ (joon shoots his ex in the face, the lyrics are also very problematic)
- Night Sky-After School Red (“native american chic”)
- She’s Gone-G-Dragon (gd is basically jack the ripper and he has a woman tied to a chair)
- Go Away-2NE1 (violence against women)
- Fire(Space Version)-2NE1 (Indian cultural appropriation)
- I Am the Best-2NE1 (CL in a straight jacket, turning mental illness into a fashion statement)
- Irreversible-Gain (the dancers start yanking her around pretty hard towards the end)
- Bad-Tablo (domestic violence)
- I Remember-Bang Yongguk (fetishizing/romanticizing domestic violence)
- No Love No More-JYP (JYP makes his hand into a gun, shooting the woman in front of him in the heart before killing himself)
- Bleeding-2Wins (graphic self mutilation)
- Danger-f(x) (“native american chic” because krystal is wearing a headdress)
- Bbiribbom Bberibbom-Co-Ed (turning mental illness/disability into a concept)
tbh i have nothing against videos that depict domestic violence as something terrible because domestic violence definitely happens and it is terrible
i don’t think they should be hiding it away and pretending that it doesn’t, so i have no problem with mvs that condemn it
fetishizing/romanticizing it however, is completely incorrect and disgusting
I wish I could reblog this with all the commentary and other videos people have added, but they’re not all in one place and anyway that’s what notes are for. (I’m guilty of deliberately picking the one that justifies my knee-jerk aesthetic attraction to “Y”. The cinematographyyyyyy!) For my part I’d like to add Piggy Dolls’ "Trend" (if not their career in general), which may have its heart in the right place but opens with unglamorous close-ups of the girls eating pizza in a basement, because that’s what fat people do all the time, right?
For further discussion, see Frank Kogan’s short-lived Problematic Korean Video Fridays: "Ya Ya Ya", "Trend", "Bbiribbom Bberibbom", and a particularly great discussion of Orange Caramel’s “A~ing” and performing cute femininity here (and here, in the context of IU’s “Marshmallow”).
Other singles I liked this year that I didn’t have anything to say about, didn’t feel like writing about again, or that didn’t qualify:
2NE1, “Hate You” (not title song)
2PM, “I’m Your Man” (J-pop)
Clover, “La Vida Loca”
GD&TOP, “집에 가지마” (Don’t Go Home) (banned)
Girls’ Generation, “Bad Girl” (J-pop)
Rainbow, “To Me”
Rania, “Dr. Feel Good”
Teen Top, “Supa Luv”
UV, “Itaewon Freedom”
Wonder Girls, “Be My Baby”
Jacynthe, “Don’t Touch Those Faders” (French version). Interesting here for two reasons. Firstly, After School recorded this song as "Virgin" on their album of the same name. Secondly, this version of the song (there’s an English one as well) mixes in English lines with the French, which reminds me of the way K-pop songs mix English in with the Korean, as “Virgin” indeed does. However, I don’t think the motivation here for including English is the same as it is in a K-pop song, that is that "English sounds cool and foreign", because Jacynthe is Canadian and Québecoise and singing for an urban, clubbing Québecois audience that, presumably, is acquainted with English as an everyday language.
Here’s what I want to know: Can we draw a parallel between historical Anglophone imperialism over Francophone Québecois culture and Western globalizing/cultural colonization of South Korean culture (and colonialism/imperialism via U.S. military bases, etc.), and link that to the use of English by a Francophone Québecoise singer and by a South Korean girl group? Or are we post- all that and able to assign other reasons for the use of English in these songs, ones that prioritize the music over its cultural context and assign more agency and autonomy to the people producing the music? I’d actually prefer to do the former, but I don’t want to jump to any conclusions.
Gonna guess it’s not because of our knowledge of Kim Jong Il’s crazy dictatorial nature.
I’ve been avoiding looking at/commenting on anything to do with Kim Jong Il’s death because I’m afraid of seeing people LOLing at “crazy brainwashed North Koreans”.
To hell with the other half of my list - THIS is the song of the year.
favourite = I wanted to listen to it, I enjoyed having it stuck in my head, and I thought about it enough to have something to say about it.
Listed roughly in descending order from “good but kind of embarrassing” (12) to “mind-blowing” (1), though the placement is by no means definitive - I’m not a digital chart.