Currently in Manhattan, NY:

Why Homoerotic Fanservice is Just Not Okay

News via seoulbeats.com
  Why Homoerotic Fanservice is Just Not Okay

We here at Seoulbeats generally do not shy away from tackling the more controversial issues in K-pop, and we have in the past written extensively on both homosexuality in K-pop and the hypocritical nature of celebrities who simultaneously trumpet the anti-gay cause, yet engage in what could undoubtedly be deemed decidedly homosexual fanservice at the same time (lookin at Siwon, you handsome bigot, you).  One would think that there is no use in beating a dead horse into the ground, and I would be the first to agreebut then I saw these pictures from SHINeeWorld Concert II.

Perhaps it would be more appropriate to headdesk said horse into the ground?  Is that possible?

So let me try to get this straight: in an effort to please fans, whose fan culture is dominated by the incredibly bizarre concept of shipping, whereby fans pair two idols together in what is generally interpreted to be a romantic relationship that, depending on which fan fiction you are reading, is eroticized to a pornographic degree, Jonghyun decided (whilst scantily clad) to grab Taemin by the hair, press against him, and imitate landing on him a kiss so sexy and passionate that it might as well have come straight out of an adult move intended for a homosexual audience.  And then, not wanting to miss out on more fun, Taemin decided to pass a dollar bill to Minho by way of his mouth, ostensibly to please more fans who maybe werent satisfied with the Jonghyun/Taemin kiss because thats not what they consider their One True Pairing (OTP).

Shipping in general is not a debate into which I hope to enter at this juncture, because I am in no way qualified to talk about where it began, how it began, and how pervasively disturbing its role in the K-popiverse is.  However, what I can tell you is that it is undoubtedly at the root of this incredibly bizarre and bizarrely disturbing display of fanserviceand while I am usually content to sigh through my nose and brush fanservice off as nothing more than just pandering to the masses, the social implications of this particular instance have made me thoroughly disgusted.  Why?  Because the open acceptanceand indeed, encouragement  of this sort of homoerotic fanservice flies in the face of South Koreas general attitude towards the homosexual community.

I probably dont need to state that societally, South Korea is (officially) more conservative when it comes to issues ofwell, lets call it sexual liberation.  Abortion is still illegal (though not unobtainable), sexual education in public schools could probably use a serious face-lift, and homosexuality is so far underground that it has, by this point, probably made friends with a whole slew of dead horses that we writers have beat there.  Forget the issue of homosexual marriage; South Korea has yet to carve out a niche for homosexuals to even exist openly and comfortably in society as human beings deserving of rights and respect.  The Korean gay community lives life in secrecy, restricting their activities to the far more forgiving realm of the internet; coming out to parents, relatives, and friends is often a totally unimaginable scenario.  Even the Korean gay pride parade is an event that seems anything but prideful; totally absent are the flamboyant colors, costumes, and displays of solidarity and strength that are present at gay pride parades held in the United States and elsewhere.  Instead, the event is somber and soberingall participants wear masks to hide their identities and armbands that state that they are not permitted to be photographed or interviewed by the media.  In order to derail suspicions from friends and co-workers, gays and lesbians even enter into what are known as contract marriages with each other and maintain the facade of heterosexuality while pursuing homosexual relationships on the side.  In South Korea, being gay is often synonymous with living life in fear of being discovered, outed, and ruined.

Even Korean entertainment is subject to the same level of discrimination.  Just a few weeks ago, my fellow writer Paloma wrote about the unfortunate case of gay celebrity Hong Seok-cheon, whose coming out out of the closet essentially destroyed his entire career.  While he has been able to make small inroads back into entertainment, he has undoubtedly been stigmatized and will likely never fully recover from it.  Wisely, he has pursued other business ventures outside of the celebrity world.  But the reason behind Hongs fall from grace?  He wasnt pretending to be homosexual for the sake of anyone else.  He lives this life every single daynot simply because fans find it sexy and/or cute when their favorite idols, be the male or female, act as though they are in a romantic and/or sexual relationship.  He is gay, and for him, it is not fanservice to be turned into fan fiction.  For him and for many other gays, the mere idea of Jonghyun and Taemin doing this as some sort of fanservice jokeand getting away with itmust be completely insulting.

Lets imagine for a second that Jonghyun and Taemin werent faking itthat they were actually involved in a homosexual relationship, and attempting to make out with each other was their way of telling the world that they are gay and proud of it.  I dont doubt for one second that this sort of coming out would lead to the end of SHINee (and their careers as celebrities in South Korea) faster than you can say, SHINees back.  But lets consider the fact that this was almost definitely not the case.  What does that leave us with?  Are we expected to be under the delusion that homosexuality is only okay in South Korea when it serves to fulfill the somewhat inappropriate fantasies of a largely female fan base?

Face it: what we have here is the glorification of imagined homosexuality for the perverse pleasure of fansand this in and of itself is utterly disgraceful and insulting to the millions of men and women in South Korea and around the world who suffer discrimination and oppression simply because they are gay.  That this sort of fanservice is deemed steamy and said to make fans go wild is wrong on so many levels, particularly because if two gay men who truly loved each other kissed that way on the streets of Seoul, they would be shunned for it.  Homosexuality is not a joke, not a gag, and certainly not something to be treated as an innocent and light-hearted tool for winning the hearts of fans whose true opinions on homosexuality likely do not apply to their beloved oppas and unnies, however disturbing that may be.  To trivialize it to such an absurd degree is disappointing, degrading, and just plain not okay.

What do you say, Seoulmates?

(SM Entertainment, Twitter, Ask a Korean!, John Cho, “The Wedding Banquet Revisited: ‘Contract Marriages’ Between Gays and Lesbians,” Anthropological Quarterly, Vol. 82, No. 2 (2009))

G-Dragon, Seohyun, Yesung, And More Proportion Throwback Pictures On Children’s Day

News via soompi.com
G-Dragon, Seohyun, Yesung, And More Proportion Throwback Pictures On Children’s Day

G-Dragon, Seohyun, Yesung, And More Proportion Throwback Footage On Children’s Dayilmare42 Might 5, 2016 0 Some of K-Pops biggest stars have shared photos from their childhoods for Children’s Day this year!

Children’s Day is celebrated on May justfive in South Korea, which just occurs to be “Throwback Thursday.” Its an reputable holiday when oldsters take their youngsters out on trips to the park, zoo, amusement park, or simply spend time in combination as a family.

On this special day, celebrities who are all grown up now took to Instagram to post photos from when they were kids, adding BIGBANG’s G-Dragon, Great Junior’s Yesung and Kangin, Girls’ Generation’s Seohyun, EXID’s Hani and Junghwa, and rather a lot of more!

“Produce 101″ Contestant Han Hyeri Becomes A Cosmetic Model

News via soompi.com
“Produce 101″ Contestant Han Hyeri Becomes A Cosmetic Model

Produce 101 Contestant Han Hyeri Becomes A Cosmetic Style ehk38 Might 5, 2016 0 Superstar Empire trainee Han Hyeri has landed a gig as a cosmetics model sooner than her authentic debut.

Han Hyeri, who competed on on womanworkforce survival display Product 101 and carried out in 12th place, has been courted by way of the advertisement industrybecause the close of the show.

Girls’ Generation’s Tiffany and Seohyun: Same Dress, Other Feel

News via koreaboo.com
Girls’ Generation’s Tiffany and Seohyun: Same Dress, Other Feel

Image: Ladies Generations Tiffany / Dispatch

Image: Ladies Generations Seohyun / Dispatch

Super Junior’s Kanging Unearths His Deathly Worry Of Labelmates BoA And Dana

News via koreaboo.com
Super Junior’s Kanging Unearths His Deathly Worry Of Labelmates BoA And Dana

Share on FacebookShare on TwitterGuesting on the maximum recent episode of Radio Star, Super Junior member Kangin confessed which two SM Entertainment labelmates he's virtually scared of.

Aired on Would possibly 4th, Kangin printed that he feels the most frightened when around CSJH The Grace and musical actress Dana in addition singer BoA.

He says, There are two ladies whom I believe nervous around, BoA and Dana. Its because Dana used to bein point of factdifficult on me whilstI used to be a trainee.

SISTAR Soyou Vs Bora: Who Has The maximum productive Frame Proportions?

News via koreaboo.com
SISTAR Soyou Vs Bora: Who Has The maximum productive  Frame Proportions?

Image: SISTAR Soyou and Mad Clown / Dispatch

Image: SISTAR Soyou / Dispatch

Image: SISTAR Soyou / Dispatch

Dana Finds She’s Had A Boyfriend For The Beyond 3 Years

News via koreaboo.com
Dana Finds She’s Had A Boyfriend For The Beyond  3 Years

Aired on Might 4th, the SM Entertainment artist guested on the preferreddisplay where she made a stunning confession to the panel and viewers. I have a boyfriend. Weve been in combination the last three years.

The unexpected confession was onceinducedthrough a observation made by MC Kim Gura who said, You shouldnow not accept a boyfriend, after noticing that Dana loved dogs.

Image: Dana on Radio Star / MBC

TWICE And SEVENTEEN Best Gaon Charts With New Releases

News via soompi.com
TWICE And SEVENTEEN Best Gaon Charts With New Releases

TWICE And SEVENTEEN Best Gaon Charts With New Releasesporshia Would possibly 5, 2016 0 Rookie teams continue to dominate as Two times and SEVENTEEN both top the Gaon Charts in the 18th week of 2016 (April 24 30)! 

TWICE come away with an excellent4no 1 spots for their new tune Cheer Up, at the Digital, Streaming, Download, and Social charts. Meanwhile, SEVENTEEN scoop number one on the Album chart for their first full-length album, Love Letter, with TWICE following them at number two for their newest mini-album, PAGE TWO.

Other tracks following TWICEs Cheer Up in the pinnaclefive of the Virtual chart come with Jung Eun Jis With somewhat of luck Sky, Eddy Kims My Lips Like Warm Coffee, 10cms What the Spring??, and Block Bs Toy.

Song Joong Ki’s Fanatics Take Over Airport In Thailand For His Arrival

News via soompi.com
Song Joong Ki’s Fanatics Take Over Airport In Thailand For His Arrival

Song Joong Ki’s Enthusiasts have Over Airport In Thailand For His Arrivalboxclub Might 5, 2016 0 Song Joong Ki’s improbablerepute every bit a Hallyu superstarwas once once backshown at a contemporary airport visit.

On Could 4, Song Joong Ki traveled from the Incheon World Airport in Korea to the Suvarnabhumi Airport (also referred to as Bangkok Overseas Airport) in Thailand. Instantly upon his arrival, the airport changed into mobbed by capability of fans in want of to welcome him.

The local channel PBS aired residepictures of Song Joong Ki as he entered the airport. Ever because the early morning, fans crowded the airport waiting to looka lookin theirfavourite star, protectingsymptoms that acknowledged “Song-Song Couple” and “Song Joong Ki” written in Korean. Oncethey may run into his face, the crowds of fans rose up to welcome him. For their safety, the Thai police were dispatched to assiststayeach person from harm.

Mintty unleashes her attractive aspect with Ciara’s “Body Party” dance cover

News via koreaboo.com
Mintty unleashes her attractive  aspect with Ciara’s “Body Party” dance cover

Dancing to Ciaras Frame Party, she starts the dance with a teasing stare prior to breaking out into her sharp moves, moving flawlessly in her blue stilettos. Moving with a charismatic stare, Mintty will draw you in with her hypnotic moves.

Currently, Mintty is selling her unmarried Already Move Lady, her first solo promotions because the indefinite hiatus of her ladycrew Tiny-G.

Epik Prime contributors cross loopy in hilarious unreleased “Sentimental” cover

News via koreaboo.com
Epik Prime  contributors  cross  loopy in hilarious unreleased “Sentimental” cover

In the video, each and everycontributors are for my part recorded with Tablo making a song to the song in the automobilewhilst Mithra blazes in, planking on a skateboard. The cut is going to Tablo yelling out 센치해 (senchihae) at nighttimein the path of nowhere prior to Tukutz ends the song with a sing-a-long as he washes dishes.

예전 에픽하이의 위너 센치해 커버 아웃된 버전도 있었습니다. 공개. / Heres some other ver. of Epik Highs Winner cover that didnt make the cut. pic.twitter.com/DE3zYMBsCC