What a year. If I tried to list all of the scandals and tragedies and lawsuits that took place this year, 2015 would already be over by the time I finished.
Seriously though, from the very first week of the year, we were hit with sadness. It has only been a year since Leeteuk was called from the army with the traumatic news that his father and both of his grandparents were dead. When he returned to us in the summer with a smiling face, it was as though everybody forgot about his loss. I speak from experience when I say that twelve months is not very long for a grieving person. I still hope that he and his family are doing alright in coping with the loss.
Today, some of us are still trying to cope with the losses of EunB and RiSe. That was such a scary and tragic time, and to this day I still worry about all of our artists driving to and from their crazy schedules. I may not be a fan of Ladies’ Code or be able to recognize all of the members, but I think we all as K-pop fans felt this loss. My heart goes out to the families of our two lovely ladies as well as Ashley, Sojung, and Zuny, who I’m not sure will ever be the same again.
On a similar note, while this is not specifically related to K-pop, I can still never forget the terrifying and tragic Sewol Ferry Incident. I for one was really shaken up by it. So many of my worst fears actually happened to kids my sister’s age. I sincerely hope and pray that none of you reading this ever experiences a tragedy like that. I cannot begin to imagine what that was like for the students, the parents, the survivors, the other victims, and frankly anyone who was involved in that incident.
Finally, we had to witness several artists leave their companies, and in some cases, K-pop as an industry. While that in and of itself is sad, what is even more sad is the fact that they needed to leave in the first place. I am so heartbroken to think that the six shining faces I watched perform back in April were working under slave contracts and are currently trying to legally fight for their rights. While 2014 seemed to spark a chain of artists suing their companies, I hope that 2015 can spark the change of companies restructuring their systems to give their artists fairer treatment.
Amidst all of that, I have decided to leave 2014 with a smile on my face. While there were many reasons to be sad, some of my best K-pop experiences occurred this year. Chicago, my city, finally felt the K-pop love and had not one, but FIVE groups hold shows here (Boyfriend, B.A.P, B1A4, 2pm, and VIXX). I got to attend my first ever concert and got to see my second favorite group live in person. Those are memories I will never forget and forever be thankful for.
My loves, Super Junior, finally made their comeback with a beautiful album, and THREE music videos. Zhoumi and Kyuhyun were given well-deserved solo albums. Taemin proved just how much he has grown as a dancer and singer with his first solo album. I said this before, but of every artist I have seen break away from their group to release a solo album, Taemin is the most deserving of the opportunity.
And finally, we got to watch the first of our Super Junior boys get married.
So yes, we did have some sad times in 2014, but there were also some very happy times. With that in mind, let’s all vow to take those happy memories with us and enter 2015 with smiles.
As if it was planned, no one can put this sentiment into better words than our unicorn, EXO’s Lay. His speech following EXO’s win at the MAMA Awards was perfect. First of all, he sounded like he was doing a freestyle rap, and rocking it. But when you hear/read his actual words and his sincerity behind them, you can’t help but feel hopeful for 2015.
So now moving on to 2015, let’s remember all of the reasons K-pop has made us smile.
QUESTION OF THE DAY:
What was the best moment of 2014 for you?
#NowPlaying: Islands by Super Junior. Yet another beautiful song by Super Junior, dedicated to all of the members. ❤ Every time I hear this song I feel like I’m watching the happy ending of a movie.