The latest rumors regarding the SNSD comeback have recently been leaked to the digital world and according to an ‘inside music distributor’, SM Entertainment‘s crown jewels are set to return to the Korean pop stage the first week of October. This comes as exciting news for most of us: SNSD and SME have always had a knack of cranking out addicting jingles that go viral in a matter of weeks, and their promotions provide plenty reason for fans to rejoice and haters to hate.
Whether or not you like them, probability tells me chances are that you do and that you are going to hear their music and see their faces plastered everywhere until the end of the year. I, for one, predict that their comeback is going to set records in sales and completely sweep out all other competition. We all know SNSD has accomplished at least this much before. And let’s be honest: based on their reputation for greatness, wouldn’t we all be scratching our heads and wondering what went wrong if this time around they didn’t perform at par?
From hearsay around the net, the concept is going to have something to do with the term ‘luxury sexy’. Their grass roots, however, lie in their ‘cute’ image, with which they made their debut and carried on with until the peak of success with their infectious single “Gee”. For years, the girls have successfully reigned over music charts and music sales and generated a massive response from other agencies, who immediately began spitting out their own versions of SNSD and other cute-concept groups, causing a cuteness hysteria.
But as the first decade in the new century comes to a close, I can’t help but feel that the public has been so drowned out with cute that other aesthetic appeals are on the rise to fame, leaving the glitter and mini skirts behind. There has been an influx of angst and harsh eyeliner as the tsunami of cuteness begins to recede, and I think SME knows that SNSD maybe riding out their last waves. Today’s kpop princess no longer cowers behind a prince charming or winks for his attention; she’s wearing her leather tights and fighting, not asking, for her place under the spotlight. Look at the ladies of 2NE1, take note of Hyuna’s attitude, pay attention to Sistar, and even throw a nod to f(x). They may seem cute from time to time, but you know they’re bringing something else to the table.
I think this is why SNSD is shifting their image to sexy: to keep up with the times. I doubt it will do much to hinder the magnitude of their success this fall, but I don’t know how effective this will be in the long run. Sure, changing concepts up keeps the people interested, but everyone will always connate SNSD as the breakthrough group of cute, the dolls of the pop scene. Even now, the cute is what they’re sought for, not only by fans, but also by cosmetics and clothing brands and other product lines. In my opinion, the sexy Soshi’s won’t last long-its just not what people are used to and on top of that, there are groups who do sexy better.
What will become of SNSD as tastes shift? Though I’m sure there will always be a sea of Sones to argue their case, it would be ignorant to disregard the fact that there exists different concepts, images, appeals, whatever, that are coming to significant prominence. Megan remarks this general trend as the end of an era. I think she’s right. In this scenario, the age of the cute and of the damsel in distress, is making its way out the door. With this in mind, over the next few years, as other image concepts and the idols that use them rise to power, Girl’s Generation may slowly become a fond memory of cuter days.