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
- Two more former members of Lovelyz have announced their future plans. Kei has signed with PALMTREE ISLAND and will be a musical actress from now on, while Yein has joined with Sublime Artist Agency as a singer and actress. Yein is also planning on making her solo debut. This leaves Jin and Sujeong as the remaining Lovelyz members who have yet to reveal their next steps. You can read more about Kei here and more about Yein here.
- After stepping down as the CEO of AOMG and H1GHR MUSIC, Jay Park is reportedly planning on creating a new label to debut an idol group. Kakao Entertainment confirmed that they have been discussing business partnerships together, but nothing is set in stone yet.
- CRAVITY’s Minhee and Kep1er’s Chaehyun are the new hosts for The Show. They are replacing ATEEZ’s Yeosang, Weeekly’s Jihan, and WEi’s Yohan.
- ONEUS members Leedo and Xion are going on temporary hiatus to treat some injuries and other health concerns. You can read a translation of RBW Entertainment’s statement about it here.
- FNC Entertainment announced that former AOA member Jimin has left the company after the expiration of her contract. Jimin previously quit AOA and halted activities as an idol when former groupmate Mina accused her of bullying in 2020. You can read a translation of FNC’s statement about it here.
- After a long and drawn out legal battle, Brave Entertainment is allowing Kim Samuel to end his contract and depart the company. Brave Entertainment originally planned to file an appeal after the court ruled in Samuel’s favor a few months ago, but then had a conversation with Samuel where both parties mutually decided to part ways. You can read translations of Brave Entertainment’s statement and Samuel’s Instagram post about the situation here.
- 220 Entertainment announced a couple of updates about boy group KNK: Heejun has left the group and agency after the expiration of his contract, while Inseong will be enlisting in the military in February. You can read a translation of their statement about it here.
- Brave Girls’ Minyoung is on a temporary hiatus due to health concerns. You can read a translation of Brave Entertainment’s statement about it here.
- Big Planet Made announced that VIVIZ – the girl group of former GFriend members Eunha, SinB, and Umji – is planning on debuting in February.
- The Gaon Chart Music Awards announced the performing artist lineup for their upcoming ceremony on January 27th. Idols performing include Girls’ Generation’s Taeyeon, SHINee, Red Velvet, Oh My Girl, Brave Girls, NCT 127, NCT Dream, The Boyz, Kang Daniel, and STAYC.
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.)
Kim Yohan (WEi), “Dessert” (1/10)
MIRAE, “Marvelous” (1/12)
Momoland feat. Natti Natasha, “Yummy Yummy Love” (1/14)
ENHYPEN, “Blessed-Cursed” (1/10)*
Changmin (TVXQ), “Devil” (1/13)
Wheein (MAMAMOO), “Make Me Happy” (1/16)
*I have no idea why YouTube still has ENHYPEN’s music video labeled as a live event, but hopefully that link fixes itself eventually.
Coming Up Next Week
|Monday (1/17)||Tuesday (1/18)||Wednesday (1/19)||Thursday (1/20)||Friday (1/21)|
|fromis_9||BamBam (GOT7)||Moonbyul (MAMAMOO)|
This Week’s Music Show Wins
|The Show (SBS MTV)||No broadcast/winner announced|
|Show Champion (MBC)||No broadcast/winner announced|
|M! Countdown (MNET)||Kep1er, “Wa Da Da” (1st win/1st EVER win)|
|Music Bank (KBS)||Kep1er, “Wa Da Da” (2nd win)|
|Music Core (MBC)||IVE, “Eleven” (8th win)|
|Inkigayo (SBS)||IVE, “Eleven” (9th win)|
Album Sales, Streaming, and Charting
NOTE: Gaon‘s weekly charts reflect the previous week. To see a full breakdown of the chart, you can go here.
Love Me Like
Disharmony: Find Out
|“Merry-Go-Round,” Show Me the Money 10*||BE’O feat. Beenzino,|
|“Limousine,” Show Me the Money 10**||IVE,|
|Streaming||“Merry-Go-Round,” Show Me the Money 10||BE’O feat. Beenzino,|
|“Limousine,” Show Me the Money 10||IU,|
“The Giving Tree” (OST)
“I’ll Leave You” (OST)
|GOT the Beat,|
|Social||BTS||Lisa||BLACKPINK||Im Young Woong||Kim Ho Joong|
*“Merry-Go-Round” is by sokodomo feat. Zion.T and Wonstein, and is produced by Slom.
**”Limousine” is by BE’O feat. Song Mino, and is produced by Gray.
The International Side of K-pop
- K-pop on various Billboard charts this week:
- TWICE’s Formula of Love: O+T=<3 ranked #148 on the Billboard 200 in its eighth week, extending its record as the longest-charting 2021 girl group album.
- NCT’s Universe ranked #67 on the Billboard 200 in its third week. It also took the #1 spot on the World Album Sales chart for the third week in a row.
- NCT 127’s Sticker ranked #149 on the Billboard 200 in its sixteenth week, extending its records as the longest-charting 2021 K-pop album. They’re also the third K-pop group to chart for so long with one album after BTS and BLACKPINK.
- Coldplay and BTS’s “My Universe” ranked #58 on the “Hot 100” in its fifteenth week.
- Three K-pop boy groups appeared on the list for the Top 10 Best-Selling Albums in the United States for 2021. TXT ranked the highest, with The Chaos Chapter: FREEZE at #5. NCT 127 placed #7 with Sticker. BTS grabbed #8 and #10 with Map of the Soul: 7 and BE respectively. You can see the full list here.
- ONEUS will be going on a United States concert tour in February and March – you can see the dates and locations here.
- The following K-pop music videos reached new viewer milestones on YouTube this week:
- ATEEZ’s “Wonderland” is their first ever music video to pass 100 million views.
- aespa’s “Black Mamba” is their first music video to hit 200 million views.
Notable Variety Shows Featuring K-pop Idols
|Weekly Idol||Knowing Brothers||Amazing Saturday|
|This Week||WJSN Chocome||2AM||Xiumin (EXO) and Kang Hongseok – promoting musical Hadestown|
|Next Week||P1Harmony||Non-idol guests||DinDin and Mijoo (Lovelyz)|
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)
FEATURED IMAGE SOURCE: BE:LIFT LAB (ENHYPEN)
VIDEO SOURCES: YouTube, BE:LIFT LAB (ENHYPEN), DSP Media (MIRAE), THE L1VE (Wheein), MLD Entertainment (Momoland), OUI Entertainment (Kim Yohan), SM Entertainment (Changmin)
OTHER SOURCES: Wikipedia, Billboard, Gaon Chart, KBS, MBC, MNET, SBS