Katherine’s K-pop Recap: October 25-31, 2021

A summary of the news, current and upcoming comebacks, charts and music show wins, and more!

NOTE: Except in special cases, the news recapped in these posts will refer to K-pop only. K-dramas, variety shows, and other forms of entertainment will only be mentioned if there is an idol or idol group involved.

News to Note

  • One of aespa’s “behind the scenes” videos showed member Giselle mouthing a racial slur while she was lipsyncing and dancing to SZA’s “Love Galore,” and she posted an official apology through the group’s Twitter account. You can read more about the situation and see her apology here.
  • Girls’ Generation’s Taeyeon responded to recent reports that she was one of the victims of a large-scale real estate scam – you can read more about the situation and a translation of her Instagram Stories post about it here.
  • KQ Entertainment has said that they will be taking legal action against those invading ATEEZ’s privacy. According to their statement, this announcement comes after the company discovered a tracking device planted on one of the group’s vehicles. You can read a translation of the statement here.
  • HYBE is taking legal action against the cryptocurrency ARMY COIN, which reportedly has been marketing itself towards BTS fans with the group’s image and thus violating their portrait rights. You can read a translation of their statement here.
  • Oh My Girl and NCT Dream were honored at the 2021 Korean Popular Culture & Arts awards, both receiving the Minister of Culture, Sports, and Tourism’s commendation.
  • Block B’s P.O has signed with Artist Company as his new agency after leaving Seven Seasons Entertainment.
  • fromis_9’s Chaeyoung will be temporarily performing seated at some of the group’s events after suffering an ankle injury. You can read a translation of Pledis Entertainment’s statement about it here.

This Week’s Debuts and Comebacks

(Please note that I won’t necessarily link every release that came out this week – just the ones that I’m aware of or popped up on my radar. The same is true of the “Coming Up Next Week” category.)

Epik High, “Face ID” feat. GIRIBOY, Sik-K, and JUSTHIS (10/25)

bugAboo, “bugAboo” (*DEBUT* 10/25)

EPEX, “Do 4 Me” (10/26)

Secret Number, “Fire Saturday” (10/27)

Jeon Somi, “” (10/29)

NCT 127, “Favorite” (10/25)

BOL4, “Butterfly Effect” (10/26)

Ailee, “Don’t Teach Me” (10/27)

Park Jihoon, “Serious” (10/28)

Coming Up Next Week

Monday (11/1)Tuesday (11/2)Wednesday (11/3)Thursday (11/4)Friday (11/5)
2AMSuper Junior D&ELABOUMTO1
The BoyzLeo (VIXX)MJ (ASTRO)
*solo debut*

This Week’s Music Show Wins

The Show (SBS MTV)aespa, “Savage” (7th win)
Show Champion (MBC)No broadcast/winner announced
M! Countdown (MNET)SEVENTEEN, “Rock With You” (1st win)
Music Bank (KBS)SEVENTEEN, “Rock With You” (2nd win)
Music Core (MBC)IU, “Strawberry Moon” (1st win)
Inkigayo (SBS)IU, “Strawberry Moon” (2nd win)

Album Sales, Streaming, and Charting

Gaon Chart

NOTE: Gaon‘s weekly charts reflect the previous week. To see a full breakdown of the chart, you can go here.

Dimension: Dilemma
Crazy in Love
Love Yourself: Tear
Overall DigitalIU,
“Strawberry Moon”
Im Young Woong,
“Love Always Run Away” (OST)
The Kid LAROI and Justin Bieber,
Lee Mujin,
“Traffic Light”
“Strawberry Moon”
The Kid LAROI and Justin Bieber,
Lee Mujin,
“Traffic Light”
BTS and Coldplay,
“My Universe”
DownloadsIm Young Woong,
“Love Always Run Away”
“Strawberry Moon”
“Rock With You”
“First Loss”
Lee Jinhyuk,
“Work Work”
SocialBTSLisaBLACKPINKIm Young Woong aespa

According to Hanteo, SEVENTEEN’s new mini album Attacca has sold over a million copies and now ranks #3 for a 2021 album’s highest first week sales. (The other two are BTS’s Butter and SEVENTEEN’s other mini album Your Choice.) Meanwhile, NCT 127’s repackage album Favorite reached over one million pre-stock orders.

The International Side of K-pop

  • BTS news this week:
    • Coldplay and BTS’s “My Universe”ranked #13 on Billboard‘s “Hot 100” in its fourth week on the chart.
    • BTS’s singles “DNA” and “Permission to Dance” were both certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of Japan (RIAJ) for passing over 100 million streams.
    • BTS has been nominated for three People’s Choice Awards (an American awards show): The Group of 2021, The Song of 2021 (for “Butter”), and The Music Video of 2021 (both for “Butter” and for “My Universe” with Coldplay). They previously won all three of these awards last year.
    • BTS has also been nominated for three American Music Awards: Favorite Pop Group or Duo, Favorite Pop Song (for “Butter”), and Artist of the Year (their first nomination in this category).
    • BTS won two awards at the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards Japan (in the international category): Best Group Video (for “Butter”) and Best Collaboration Video (for “My Universe” with Coldplay).
  • TXT has also been nominated for this year’s People’s Choice Awards as The New Artist of 2021. They are the only K-pop act among this category’s nominees.
  • K-pop on various Billboard charts this week:
    • NCT 127’s third album Sticker ranked #200 on the Billboard 200 in its fifth week, maintaining its status as the second longest charting K-pop album of 2021.
    • ENHYPEN’s first full album Dimension: Dilemma debuted at #11 on the Billboard 200. This is their second release to appear on the chart, after Border: Carnival which debuted at #18 earlier this year.
    • Dimension: Dilemma also debuted at #1 on the World Albums chart.
  • Monsta X is releasing a special film Monsta X: The Dreaming in December, around the same time that they’re dropping their second English language album. You can read more about the movie here.
  • BLACKPINK’s Lisa is the first female K-pop soloist to chart on the UK’s Official Singles chart for more than four weeks, with her song “Money” most recently placing #46. (It debuted at #81.)
  • The following K-pop music videos reached new viewer milestones on YouTube:
    • Lisa’s “LALISA” hit 300 million views, becoming the fastest music video by a female K-pop soloist to do so.
    • BLACKPINK as a group also had two music videos achieve new viewer milestones: “Playing With Fire” hit 700 million views, while “Lovesick Girls” reached 500 million views.
    • Zico’s “Any Song” was his first music video to reach 100 million views.
    • “Mmmh” by EXO’s Kai also hit 100 million views, becoming the first music video by an EXO member as a soloist to do so.

Notable Variety Shows Featuring K-pop Idols

Weekly IdolKnowing BrothersAmazing Saturday
This WeekT1419 and EPEXNon-idol guestsNon-idol guests
Next WeekLABOUMNon-idol guestsNon-idol guests
(Street Woman Fighter contestants)

SOURCES NOTE: I get my news from a mix of sources, and all of them report the same information and sometimes cite each other as well. So rather than linking the exact article for each and every news item (unless the article provides a lot more detail), I will cite my general news sources below. Each of them will most likely have an article and/or tweet providing more details on the item in question.

MY REGULAR NEWS SOURCES: Soompi, Omona They Didn’t (Livejournal), The Seoul Story (Twitter @theseoulstory), and Girl Group Zone! (Twitter @girlgroupzone)


VIDEO SOURCES: YouTube, A Team Entertainment (bugAboo), The Black Label (Jeon Somi), C9 Entertainment (EPEX), THE L1VE (Ailee), Maroo Entertainment (Park Jihoon), Shofar Music (BOL4)*, SM Entertainment (NCT 127), Vine Entertainment (Secret Number)**, William Morris Endeavor (Epik High)
*BOL4’s music video is distributed by Bugs!
**Secret Number’s music video is distributed by 1theK

OTHER SOURCES:  YouTube, Wikipedia, BillboardGaon Chart, KBS, MBC, MNET, SBS

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