20140701_seoulbeats_youngji_karaproject_winnerHeo Youngji! Congratulations, you have successfully metamorphosed from Baby KARA into Official KARA Member.

KARA Project, DSP Media‘s televised effort to choose new member(s) for KARA and also the strangest pre-debut competition show I’ve ever seen, culminated today by choosing only one new member, not the widely speculated and implied two. With Nicole and Jiyoung‘s departures and Youngji’s addition, KARA will now be a 4-member group. The show recap will be up as soon as possible, but until then what are your reactions?

I think the show was mismanaged if its largest purpose was to restore faith in the company and in the future of KARA. I don’t doubt that Youngji will do a good job, but I expect her to have a very hard time and face a lot of criticism, which the show did not help with, often promoting other members (Sojin, Somin) more than her.

More importantly, DSP has done nothing to quell persistent rumors that the three remaining KARA members disapprove of the choice to add a new member, which continues to fracture Kamilia, especially in Korea. On the other hand, if the show’s main purpose was to promote DSP’s trainees by leveraging the name of KARA and an existing fanbase, then I believe it fulfilled its goal.

What do you think of Youngji? When will Baby KARA form their own group? And what is next for KARA?

(Images via DSP Media, International BNT)