To be very honest, I never thought I’ll ever blog about something Shinhwa related. Why? It’s because my sis and I have always feared the thought of liking this 15-year-old group. Yes, we feared it. You may ask again, why? Because we thought, if we do end up liking Shinhwa, there will be so much that we will have to catch up with; as in 15 years worth of activities, albums, and history. You can say that we’re just being lazy that’s why we feared the thought of “backtracking”, but then, the inevitable happened anyway.
One summer day, we were just surfing the net, we were on YouTube, then we suddenly asked each other “Why don’t we watch a music video of Shinhwa?”. We’ve always been wondering what type of music does Shinhwa do that’s why we decided to search for a music video. It was on the 28th day of May year 2013 when YouTube lead us to this:
How do I describe my reaction to this music video? To say that “I was amazed” is an understatement. I was really blown away by the song and the music video. The vogue dancing, in particular, made a strong impact (both on my sister and I) that’s why we ended up abusing the replay button on YouTube (to watch it again and again). Then, we eventually downloaded the music video. It didn’t stop there, though. After seeing the music video, the next thing that we got curious about is how do these men perform This Love live? So we searched again, then saw this:
And then the rest was history. We downloaded all their This Love stage performances. We saw some of their backstage clips from different music shows, and then, ah, we landed a 신화방송 (Shinhwa Bangsong) Episode 14 cut on YouTube.
This show, I have to say, is what turned us into the Shinhwa fans that we are now. (I believe anyone who gets to watch this will actually become a fan because…reasons, lol). Shinhwa Bangsong by the way is Shinhwa’s very own variety show which airs weekly on the South Korean cable channel JTBC. It’s currently on hiatus but it will be back on September. But anyway, some of you may ask what makes this show so special that I think it can convert anyone to becoming a Shinhwa fan? The answer is simple: it’s Shinhwa.
Shinhwa is a group that definitely knows how to make people laugh, but it’s also a group that can leave people in complete awe and admiration. They’re the funniest when they goof around, but they’re the best once they start talking about their stories of failure, difficulties, hard work, and love.
What I love most about them
1. Their closeness
Even though they have different personalities, when they play around, it’s as if they become one. Their closeness is the type that they can finish each other’s sentences; they can even tell what the other is thinking just by looking at that member’s eyes. And they definitely know when a member is lying or being sincere.
2. Their love for one another
Being a group that has been together for over 15 years, these six men have really been through a lot. I particularly admire and love how they stood by each other’s sides through their most difficult times. When S.M. Entertainment (their former agency) wanted to renew their contracts not as Shinhwa but as solo artists, they could have accepted the offer if they really wanted to earn more. But no, they decided to leave the company as a group instead because they wanted to continue working together. They wanted to be with one another in their pursuit of success. As I see it, their love for Shinhwa and its members went beyond what the company has originally planned for them.
Also, when each member went through their own personal problems, all five were there for the member who was in need. When Junjin suffered from panic disorder, when Minwoo went through a tough financial problem, and when Hyesung’s gambling scandal broke, they were there to be the member’s support system.
Another instance that I find really touching is when Dongwan stood up for Minwoo when an ex-girlfriend of Minwoo badmouthed him after their break-up.
I know it is silly to even point this out (Shinhwa’s love for one another) because every Shinhwa Changjo definitely knows this already, but please excuse me. I just had to talk about it as I’m really in awe of Shinhwa’s relationship.
3. Their uncompromising love for Shinhwa Changjo
“When we think back to our original intentions, we didn’t start acting because we wanted to become actors or doing activities because they want to be solo singers. We came together and do this to be Shinhwa and for the fans who cheer on us as Shinwha. Even though we can earn more money in these areas (solo activities) if we keep working on it, I felt it a bit despicable to do so.” -Eric, KBS2 Win Win
“Our roots are Shinhwa.” -Junjin, KBS2 Win Win
Though it was challenging for Shinhwa to do so, they still came back as a group to keep their promise to their fans, Shinhwa Changjo. From Eric’s words, I could feel the group’s strong sense of gratitude to their fans. They knew very well what, but more like who, helped them reach the legendary spot where they are now. It’s amazing how they will never compromise when it comes to their commitment to their fans.
Even Dongwan’s famous line “Shinhwa isn’t responsible for your lives” is an expression of an uncompromising love, at least for me. Some may find this statement rude and offensive but for me, it is a good thing that someone from Shinhwa can fearlessly say this to fans. This attitude of Dongwan can help fans have a good dose of reality check from time to time, amidst their fondness of Shinhwa.
4. Their fearlessness
Shinhwa is among the few that can openly admit in public when they are in a relationship or not. We all know how big of a deal dating issues are for Korean celebrities, well, idols to be exact. But Shinhwa, though an idol group, isn’t one to give a damn about that. This is admirable for me because, again, it helps fans have a good dose of reality. But to be honest, I also have to commend the Shinhwa Changjos for their maturity. Recently there have been rumors that Eric was seen holding hands with someone in Gangnam. I was so used to fans reacting negatively to such issues but Shinhwa Changjo reacted differently. They were very accepting of the information they learned and they didn’t say anything bad at all about Eric and his rumored girlfriend. That’s also very admirable for me. The legends and their orange princesses are indeed an admirable bunch. I love them.
5. Their touchiness
I heard they were grabbing each other’s butt in this picture above, lol. But anyway. I don’t love their touchiness because of “yaoi”. I love it because it shows how close they are. Though I’m just a fan, I can totally tell when the skinship I’m seeing is purely fan service or otherwise. Shinhwa, more often than not, are touchy just because they feel like being so. Well for a group of men who have been together for 15 years, it is no wonder that they can openly hug and kiss each other on the cheek. And they are all 30-something-year-old already that is why I see their touchiness as normal, especially for men who are as dorky as they are.
I’d like to add too that often times, I feel their love for one another when they are being touchy. I find their gestures sweet and full of affection.
The last one in the list is a bit technical but of course I have to include it:
6. Their music
I’m a relatively new fan that’s why I can only speak of their recent – 2012 and 2013 – music. Though this may seem a bit biased, I have to say I only have good words for their The Return and The Classic albums.
I really love how Shinhwa’s music is so distinct and melodious. Their songs are refreshing to hear but they’re very appealing to the emotions at the same time. They can make you feel sexy and groovy, or in love and broken-hearted. If I am to rank their albums, I’ll give it a five out of five stars. Their music is also something that I’ll recommend to my friends, especially to those who are in the K-pop fandom.
Whew. I think I got pretty carried away writing this. To whoever will read this, thank you very much and I’m sorry for the long post. I guess this shows how fond I am of Shinhwa. I have to clear it out though that despite the strong fondness I have for them, I still don’t call myself a Shinwha Changjo. It’s not that I don’t want to become one, in fact I do. But I’m still too young and new of a fan that’s why I don’t have the guts to claim anything yet, or else I’ll become my own definition of a poser.
Anyway, that’s pretty much it. I think I’ll be doing a “Shinhwa Bias List” soon but for now, I’ll leave my wordpress with this entry first. I hope someone out there will enjoy my Shinhwa story and please, feel free to share your thoughts on the comment box below. I’d love to talk to anyone who is as fond of Shinhwa as I am.
Again, thank you for reading and take care! 🙂
[Disclaimer: I do not own any of the photos and videos in this post.]
Love and peace to you,