Welcome to this week’s edition of SB Week in Review, where we round up all the news you may have missed this past week. Let’s get started, shall we?
- Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited Seoul this week and met President Park Geun-hye for the first time as the two countries engaged in tri-party talks with China. Following the trilateral talks between the three countries, Abe and Park also met in bilateral discussions. While no issues were explicitly resolved, many points of tension were addressed, and the talks do bring a bit of hope for stronger relations between the two nations.
- Koreans still work the second longest hours in the OECD. Ironically, they also have one of the lowest productivity rates.
- Comedian Yoo Jae-suk lost his lawsuit against his former agency for 600 Million Won in unpaid income.
- IU fell into a few different controversies this week. First, accusations that she had illegally sampled Britney Spears‘ “Gimme More” on her The Producer’s track “23” (not to be confused with her current track “Twenty-three”). Britney is reportedly looking into it (whatever that means), and LOEN Entertainment explained that the sample was added by the song’s composer who they believed had purchased rights to it. The second wave of controversy surrounded her new track “Zeze” and beliefs that she inaccurately interpreted the character of Zeze in “My Precious Orange Tree,” and in so doing, sexualized a fictional child. Following that, suspicions also arose that the concept for the “Zeze” teaser plagiarized the short film Lost Things. Finally, IU will also be taking legal action against the netizens who crudely photoshopped images of the singer and spread them online.
- JTBC plans to take legal action against the unauthorized Chinese version of Hidden Singer.
Comebacks and Debuts
- Kyuhyun released yet another single and MV this week. “The Day We First Felt the Distance” offers a slightly more happy ending compared to the album’s title track “A Million Pieces.”
- Zico continued his solo endeavor this week on golf courses and in pools in the MV for “Boys and Girls” featuring Babylon.
- Brown Eyed Girls returned this week with the futuristic “Brave New World,” off their new album, Basic. Alongside the title track MV they also released an MV for “Warm Hole.” If the euphemism of the title and lyrics was lost on anyone, worry not, the MV provides all the imagery you’ll need to understand.
- Joining in on the 19+ fun, Jay Park released the MV for “You Know” featuring Hyuna. On the full album Worldwide Jay Park also released an ambiguous dis track titled “F*ck boy” which many suspect is about JYP.
- Rania had a rather confusing comeback this week. First, the internet was abuzz with the announcement of the addition of their first African American member, Alexandra Reid, and other new members: Seul-ji and Hye-me. Teasers were also released featuring the newest member. Then, when the MV for “Demonstrate” was dropped, the new member was nowhere to be seen. Reportedly, visa complications prevented Alexandra from being part of the MV filming, but she should promote with the group on music shows.
- Ballad duo Homme also returned this week with “It’s Not Love” and and appropriately bittersweet MV.
- EXO debuted in Japan this week with Love Me Right ~ Romantic Universe. It was also revealed that the group will release a special MV for the track “Lightsaber” in conjunction with the release of the latest Star Wars installment.
- Rookie boy group Romeo returned on November 6th with “Target.”
- SNSD‘s Seohyun will make her big screen debut alongside label-mate Chanyeol in the upcoming Chinese film So I Married an Anti-fan.
- 4Minute‘s Gayoon will also make her film debut in upcoming movie, “Dad, Daughter” (working title).
- Songstress Joo — now signed with Woollim Entertainment — released “Cry and Blow.”
Teasers and Announcements
- B.A.P. began to release individual member teasers on November 2 for their much anticipated return with “Matrix.” TS Entertainment also released the highlight medley for the album. November 15 can’t come soon enough!
- VIXX continued to drive Starlights crazy this week with teasers for Chained Up. In addition to teaser images, Jellyfish Ent also released a “Pre-Teaser” video.
- Psy will return December 1!
- YG also released yet another “Who’s Next” teaser image, amidst fan boycotts and the company’s own artists asking for the chance to come back. The mystery return will take place on November 21. In the meantime, iKON also released a teaser image of B.I and Bobby for their special digital single, “Anthem,” due out on the 16th.
- In the final round-up of YG related news, Epik High announced their upcoming ‘Legend 3’ concert, advertised with some of the best K-pop cosplays in history.
- The long awaited Lee Hongki solo debut will finally arrive this month, with an MV featuring Park Shin-hye.
- K-pop legends g.o.d. plan to release a digital single in December.
- The Melon Music Awards continues to rack up quite the list of attendees, with EXID, Big Bang, Hyukoh and APink all confirmed to be attending.
- MBK Entertainment is trying to release a previously recorded Davichi song that was scrapped from a drama OST. CJ E&M have asked the company to not release the unfinished track.
- In a confusing string of events, on Monday Jung Ryo-won and Park Hyo-shin were reported to be not only dating, but getting ready for marriage. Not only did their agencies quickly step forward to deny the claims, they went so far as to say the pair have never even met. Confusion ensued. But hey, free publicity.
- All five Big Bang members renewed their contracts with YG.
- Super Junior will be launching their own boutique label, Label SJ.
- JYP’s latest girl group Twice‘s fanclub will now be known as “Once.”
(Naver:              , Nate:     , Pann , Sports Today, XSports News, The Fact, Korea Herald. Images via: Facebook, LOEN, Mystic Entertainment, SM Entertainment.)