Hello all, and welcome back to another edition of SB Week in Review! Here’s what you may have missed this week:

Serious News

  • 20141223_seoulbeats_winner_minoThis Saturday, South Korea celebrates the 70th anniversary of liberation from Japan with Liberation Day. Generally, public holidays that fall on weekends are not extended, but in an attempt to bolster the economy (and raise approval ratings) President Park Guen-hye declared Friday the 14th a national holiday as well.
  • Partially in the spirit of Liberation Day, President Park Guen-hye also granted numerous presidential pardons — including for a few executives who were jailed for embezzlement.
  • The protests outside the Japanese Embassy took a gruesome turn this week when a man lit himself on fire during a demonstration. Since this week marks the 70th anniversary of liberation from Japan, this week’s rally was the largest of the year as protesters continue to demand an apology for the thousands of women who were forced into sexual slavery during the Japanese occupation.
  • Not even his military enlistment could keep the Kim Hyun-joong drama at bay. This week, Ms. Choi withdrew her lawsuits against Kim’s lawyers citing “unnecessary disputes.”
  • The KCSC decided to impose their heaviest fine against Show Me the Money network, MNet, for Song Mino‘s (Winner) offensive lyrics back in July.

Debuts and Comebacks

  • 20150813_seoulbeats_b1a4_sweet_girlB1A4 kicked off the comebacks this week with the charming track “Sweet Girl” and their sixth mini album of the same name.
  • We may know him mainly as an actor, but So Ji-sub is also known to dabble in the rap market every now and again. This week, he dropped “Cola Baby” featuring Soul Dive, DJ Juice and an oversized bottle of Coke.
  • Show Me the Money 4 rapper Candle debuted with the track “GVO” on the 13th.
  • Simon D is back with the single “Simon Dominic” and a new album soon to follow.
  • Producer and musician Primary returned for the first time in three years with the album Primary 2 on August 12.
  • DJ duo Axodus released “Hold On” featuring vocals by Shinee‘s Key.

Teasers and Announcements

  • 20150813_seoulbeats_hyunaSeo Kang-joon will take on the role of Baek In-ho in upcoming popular web-drama-turned-K-drama Cheese in the Trap.
  • Hyuna is coming back with her fourth solo mini album. In addition to a few scandalous teaser images, Cube also released a 19+ teaser for the upcoming album.
  • Upcoming VIXX sub-unit LR (Leo & Ravi) released the first video teasers for their debut track “Beautiful Liar.”
  • Rapper and SMTM4 coach Jay Park announced his plan to return in fall with a rap album.
  • Popular trio SG Wannabe are set to return with “Heart Beating” on the 19th. The romantic MV teaser certainly builds anticipation for the comeback.
  • The “party” continues for Girls’ Generation, who will finally be releasing their fifth full-length album, Lion Heart, later this month. The comeback will take place over two days, with six songs being released on both the 18th and 19th to complete the 12-track album.
  • Reportedly, Red Velvet will soon follow Girls’ Generation in SM‘s never ending series of comebacks. Rumors are also buzzing about an f(x) comeback this fall.
  • N (VIXX), Mina (AOA) and Ha-young (APink) will be stepping up as the new assistant MCs for Weekly Idol.
  • YG kicked off another round of ambiguous teasers on Twitter — this one even more vague than the last. Hopefully they don’t leave fans in the dark too long.
  • Hyorin (Sistar), Zico and Paloalto announced an upcoming hip-hop collaboration, though further details still remain under wraps.

Other News

  • 20150808_seoulbeats_gdragon_top2KCON NYC happened this past weekend with acts such as Girls’ Generation, Teen Top, AOA and VIXX taking the stage in New Jersey. Thankfully, it appears attendees were spared another NC-17 Fanfic open mic.
  • GD & TOP‘s “Zutter” was deemed unfit for broadcast by KBS. Since YG also announced that they have no plan to censor the lyrics, “Zutter” will not be performed on KBS’ Music Bank. The other half of Made Series E, “Let’s Not Fall In Love,” remains in the clear.
  • Tao gave his first post-Exo interview with Chinese media outlet Sina. During the interview, Tao addressed his regrets of criticizing former member Kris, as well as citing his reasons for leaving the group.
  • Though it seemed like a match made in heaven to some, Yoona and Lee Seung-gi have confirmed their break-up this past week. But as one romance ends, another begins: Actors Song Seung-hun and Liu Yifei went public with their relationship this week.
  • MBC‘s Idol Sports Championship took place once again this week. Per usual, the event stirred up more negative press than anything. T-ara found themselves in their fan-site’s poor graces while Mamamoo‘s Moonbyul sustained an ankle injury. When will the mess that is the Idol Sports Championship come to an end?
  • It’s proving to be the year for SM Entertainment as the agency reported their highest revenues ever in the first half of 2015. Not surprisingly, the agency also saw the largest album sales during this time as well. YG, on the other hand, took home 5 Red Dot awards for their album and product design.

(Osen, Naver [1] [2] [3] [4] [5], Nate, Star News [1] [2] TV Report, Pann, Newsen. Images via SM Entertainment, Cube Entertainment, YG Entertainment, WM Entertainment.)