As of January 4th, 2020, I really love ATEEZ.
ATEEZ, for the unenlightened, are a kpop group that’s around a year old at the time of this post.
I wanted to discuss my relationship with them as a fan because being a kpop fan is a lot more complicated than someone from the outside might think.
I like ATEEZ for a lot of reasons. But when I really think about it, it almost feels like it’s wrong being a fan wanting the things I want and appreciating the things I appreciate.
For example, I love that they’ve been having comebacks every 2-4 months. I adore their music and they never have a bad album. In addition, that means at least two weeks of fresh content, new stage outfits, and new merch to clamor over. Comebacks are extremely good news.
…but aren’t I obligated as the Concerned K-Pop Fan™ to be angry at the company for letting them have so many comebacks? They can’t possibly be getting enough sleep with all the promotional work they have to do. Not to mention they’re about to launch a tour too!
No. I’m going to say what no other k-pop fan you will meet is going to say: I am not concerned about their sleeping schedule. I’m not their mother.
With all the annoying crap I hear about “they are full-grown men who can make their own decisions” in relations to them dating, getting tattoos, etc, shouldn’t the same apply to their sleep schedule?
KQ is a decent company. Block B never tried to sue them. ATEEZ seems to be treated well by their (endearing) staff and they have a nice dorm and they get to eat whatever they want. They’ve been doing this frequent comeback thing since they started, and aside from a few injuries, they don’t look excessively tired.
Maybe they’re good at hiding it? Maybe it’s simply the energy of being a rising rookie group? Either way, it’s none of my business. I am a fan who likes content and I refuse to feel guilty or upset when I get what I want. In return, I won’t be overly nosy, protective, or possessive of the group. That’s how I think fan-celebrity relationships should work.
Moving on, I do have someone I don’t particularly care for in ATEEZ.
Okay, that was a bit harsh. I do like them all, but I don’t like Jongho to the same extent as I like the others.
It’s a good thing this is my blog, because if I had said this on Twitter, people from other groups (not Atinys because we are a respectful fandom who don’t like being toxic) would call me a fake fan.
Me, a fake fan? Check my incoming Ep. 3: One to All album, bro.
I also made custom ATEEZ stickers and custom ATEEZ photocards. By hand. That’s not something a fake fan would do. That’s something a poor fan does.
As I was saying, Jongho is my least favorite. He’s the legendary apple-breaking, vocally-talented maknae. But aside from that (and the fact he can appreciate Wooyong’s thighs), I don’t have much to say about him.
With the other members, things click. Hongjoong is really cute (read: smol) and he’s smart but down to earth and funny.
Mingi has one bucktooth and that small flaw makes me feel better about my imperfections. Wooyoung stole my heart with their first comeback and even though he’s the “loud” one, he doesn’t try to hard to be the funny one, which is a trap many other groups fall into.
Yeosang’s sarcasm is biting and on-point, which is something I’ve never experienced with other groups and it’s something I really like. Yunho is, simply put, a ray of (not so)pure sunshine and undeniable talent.
Seonghwa has the mom role despite being the most masculine-looking one there, which was a nice juxtaposition. San has his dimples and I’m just kind of trash for k-pop stars with dimples.
I feel like the company tried to push the whole “I can break apples” narrative with Jongho too much and I slowly became annoyed with it. He also has the weakest or the least striking visuals in a group full of unique-looking members. Yes, he’s a vocal powerhouse…but it’s not enough. There’s got to be more to his personality than apples and singing.
I should say that I still love him and his interactions with the other members legitimately make me happy. But it’s okay to have a least favorite member, as long as you’re not outright bashing them for no good reason.
I don’t watch ATEEZ’s shows, but that’s not exclusive to them. With any group at all, I’m too lazy and/or uninterested to invest time into watching their shows. So I might miss out on some iconic inside jokes; I watch plenty of high quality crack videos to learn about them anyway.
Speaking of videos, ATEEZ is at their most lovable when they’re playing games. Watching random people you’ve never seen before play hopscotch sparks joy, much less people you care a ton about. It’s more or less impossible to wipe the smile off my face when they’re having fun and being themselves.
KQ, take notes: release more videos of ATEEZ playing hide and seek and watch the money pour in.
So that’s all I have to say today. Stan Honjoong’s mullet, stan talent, stan Acheese.