After the recent news of 4Minute disbanding, I realized that this isn’t the start or the end. Earlier this year/last year, 2AM and Kara disbanded. A handful of artists decided to leave their respective groups – Sulli, Jessica, Minzy, Hyunseung, just to name a few. I’m expecting more to come.
Member lineup changes are not new, but when it comes to our favorite groups, we are left in shock. I feel like for some groups, it seems kind of normal for members to come and go, like After School or 9Muses (I also heard that the rest of the original members in 9Muses was leaving). We’ve been exposed to members constantly coming and leaving because of the groups run on a “graduation system”. Although I don’t approve of the graduation system because I’d rather not have members coming and leaving, I’m in no position to tell Kpop companies how to work.
I always called the wave with Girls Generation, 2PM, Beast, 2NE1, etc. the second generation of Kpop. I honestly don’t know if it’s the second generation, but it does seem like it’s coming to a downfall. Many contracts are for about 7 years, which is why there is so much news about this member leaving, that member leaving, this group disbanding and that group disbanding (so most of these groups debuted around 2008-2009). As contracts come to an end, many members have different thoughts and dreams and ultimately decide not to stay. Although I am/will be left super sad, I do respect their decision to leave. I mean, 7 years is a really long time. It may go by really fast, but many things can change as well. I realize that many of these celebrities debuted when they were around 20, and now that they’re nearing their 30’s, they are a lot older and mature and may have a change in goals and dreams. I guess it’s never too late to start pursuing what you like to do.
Indeed, I’m upset, and I don’t know how to react. Maybe it is time to get our hearts ready to say goodbye to our favorite artists and support them as they decide to pursue a separate path.