2020 has been a big year for BLACKPINK. They were featured on Lady Gaga’s new album, on a track called “Sour Candy”, they released their first full-length album, THE ALBUM, with contributions from Cardi B and Selena Gomez, and their Netflix documentary, Light Up The Sky premiere in October. In an ordinary year, they’d be travelling the world promoting their music, expanding their already impressive reach. That, obviously, hasn’t been possible because of COVID-19.
But if we’ve learned anything this year, it’s the power of South Korean innovation. And earlier this week, BLACKPINK announced their first online concert, THE SHOW.
Jennie, Jisoo, Lisa, and Rosé will be coming to us live on YouTube – and it makes sense that YouTube is their partner for this since their videos consistently break YouTube records and, as of six weeks ago, they had the second most followers among music artists on the platform after Justin Bieber.
So it’s yet another entry on my holiday watch list, and this is a first world problem…but I’m already starting to worry about how long it’s getting. Bridgerton is on there, along with a couple of K-dramas I have to finish and a few new ones that are starting (seriously, the output of Korean television that they’ve been able to produce even during the pandemic is crazy), and award season screeners, and whatever surprise hit that’s going to come out on Netflix because somehow they always manage a sleeper hit at this time of year…
And now BLACKPINK is in my area in the middle of the night after Boxing Day. Which is happening during Korean music award season. Every year in South Korea from early December to the first week of January, there’s an award show it seems like every weekend – and these are huge scale productions. Like pyro every five minutes. That may be a slight exaggeration but my point is, for years they’ve been putting on the most technically sophisticated, visually and sonically overwhelming showcases in front of thousands upon thousands of people. Which means that even though this year there will be no audience for these events, and of course that makes a difference for the performers in terms of energy, I’m not sure that it’ll be that much of a difference for the viewer at home already accustomed to the quality of what they’ve been seeing year after year.
This Sunday is the MNET Asian Music Awards (MAMA) and this event is a big deal across Asia. It gets very little coverage in western mainstream media but comparatively, MAMA has been described to be like the MTV VMAs for its relevance to the culture. BLACKPINK will have a stage at MAMA this weekend. More on that on Monday.
One more note on BLACKPINK, specifically Jisoo. Who can make even Crocs look cool. Yes, I just put the words “Crocs” and “cool” in the same sentence. And while I’m not saying they’re cool in general, more and more celebrities are doing the Crocs thing. Bad Bunny has his own line of Crocs which is now sold out. And so does Justin Bieber, also sold out. Jisoo is wearing her Crocs monogrammed. I like to monogram the sh-t out of everything I own and now I wonder if I have to have a pair of monogrammed Crocs, WTF. But also lol, she’s wearing her Crocs with a Christian Dior crossbody so, like I said, not everyone.