The end of 2012 and the first week of the new year in K-pop brought the return of SNSD with “I Got a Boy,” news of Rain and actress Kim Tae-hee dating and the ramifications it had on Rain’s service in the military,  The King of Dramas reached a crossroads in it’s second to last episode as writer Lee Go-eun figured out Anthony‘s secret, Baek Ji-young made her comeback with the song “Hate,” Block B sued their company to break their contract, JeA released her long awaited solo album, and the two lead couples finally found their own version of “happily ever after” in the finale of the K-drama Can We Get Married. Whew, and those were just some of the top things going on, looks like 2013 will be an eventful year in K-pop.

The following are the top 5 Things I LOVED the last week in K-pop.  If you’ve been partying up the new year a bit too hard and missed some of the happenings in the K-popiverse beware, spoilers most definitely will ensue.

5. Mir Mired

It’s not that I loved that this incident happened, I’m just super relieved that everything turned out okay and Mir was safe.  While during their first forays into the Amazon Jungle on season 3 of Kim Byung-man’s Laws of the Jungle, Mir got caught up in the river they were trying to cross when the depth suddenly dropped and the current was too strong for him to swim out of.  MMA fighter Chu Sung-hoon and other member of the cast and crew tried to reach him to help him out, but even he had a hard time getting to Mir.  Fortunately, the production had a boat on standby that was able to reach Mir and pluck him out of the river before things got too out of hand.


4. Just JeA

The Brown Eyed Girls’ leader finally strikes out on her own and released her solo album, Just JeA, on January 4th.  The MV for the title track “While You Were Sleeping” written by Jung Suk-won, who also worked with BEG maknae Ga-in, was also released on the 4th.  I have always been a fan of JeA’s voice and this song highlights it perfectly.  My favorite of her solo debut performances was on Yoo Hee-yeol’s Sketchbook where she performed Jokown and Ga-in‘s duet “We Fell in Love” along with “While You Were Sleeping.”


3.  Swimming with dolphins on We Got Married

Continuing with the honeymoons in Hawaii (they sure are making a lot of episodes out of a quick 3 day 2 night trip),  The couple each stuck out on their own with Lee Joon and Oh Yeon-seo taking some stand up paddle board lessons and Julien Kang and Yoon Se-ah trying out a classic scene from Dirty Dancing, but I think Kwanghee and Sunhwa had the best plans for the day.  The two were set up in a convertible and drove around the island to Sea Life Park (which many of you might recognize from the movie 50 First Dates) to swim with dolphins.  It looked like the couple had lots of fun and beside their attempts of speaking “dolphin” was lots of fun to watch.  Too bad they didn’t try out the park’s new shark tank, well maybe it’s a good thing because I don’t think I could take all the screaming there would be… from Kwanghee


2. Visiting UV Land 

The last episode of Immortal Song 2 featured the songs of songstress Uhm Jung-hwa. JeA and her guest band mate Narsha did a BEG’d version of “On the Count of Three.” Their performance kept them at the top f the voting until UV took the stage and performed their version of “Eye” which had an intro with glimpses of EXO‘s “Mama” with the monastic chanting and crescendo-ing guitar licks courtesy of Led Zeppelin‘s “Kashmir.” UV got the audience on their feet and took the win for the night rocking their Milli Vanilli-esque dreads and attire–loved Yoo Se-yun‘s pink house slippers.


1. Busan Boys or Bust

It was past two of the Choi Ji-woo episode of Running Man in Busan.  At first things looked great as all of the men save Gary chose to be on a team with Choi Ji-woo, leaving only Song Ji-hyo and Gary on the other.  Well the PDs must have anticipated this move because they had a surprise for everyone– four of Busan’s best: C.N. Blue‘s Yonghwa and Jonghyun, Simon D, and BEAST‘s Kikwang.  Their relay race on the beach with the males of each team having to piggyback the other team’s female member along the race route was hilarious and only further proved why Song is aptly named “Ace Ji-hyo” although Choi Ji-woo put in a commendable effort late in the game to the consternation of Jonghyun.  Seriously, I haven’t laughed so hard in a while.

Those were the 5 Things I LOVED the first week of 2013, were they yours?



A Hawaii girl, born and raised. 5 Things I LOVE about K-pop 5. Well written and fun K-dramas like Answer Me 1997; 4. K-varieties--especially Family Outing & Running Man; 3. Lee Hyori--even backwards it's Lee Hyori; 2. Yoo Jae-suk--The Timing is NOW!; and 1. Big Bang.

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