Disclaimer: No Reddit mod has written this article. I use it once every two days. These are based on opinions looking to be perceived as racist, sexist, misogynistic, offensive, non-inclusive, too inclusive, or ethically reclusive. We need clout.
Hello there, men, women, and the rest of the internet. What brought you here? The title? You thought this would be something helpful? Or the fact that your girlfriend of 19 years (of age) ghosted you because you couldn’t name every member of BTS when she asked you? Or the part where you watched a music video from Momoland so often that you wondered whether they were underage.
Well, pettiness, absurd fixations, and potentially accidental paedophilia aside, I bring you the primary source of your superficial urges. Now, this is meant for a very specific demographic, defined by the number of times they have mentioned the wish to marry that one lead character from that one K-drama – a fictional character – while ignoring the DMs of that soon-to-be sexually frustrated Redditor. Yes, it’s… *Please don’t waste your hands on doing drum rolls*
YOUNG WOMEN! South Asian women, to be specific. Women of the glorious nation- Bangladesh. Bangladeshi women between the ages of 18-25, to be more precise, and some guys in the same age group who outgrow their interests in anime girls, only to develop another- humane- obsession.
We have rejected the soap operas produced by Star Plus and Star Jalsha. Still, we have instead switched it with an equally dramatic, carefully composed, bright-coloured utopia that the Korean entertainment industry adds to the global stage.
The men and women in the dramas cry, cry and talk- for too long- carry on a monologue- for too long- stand in a corner while mysteriously avoiding getting caught by their love interest who is standing not too far from them- for too long! And the musicians do everything in their music videos. They sing, dance, dye their hair a different colour, and do a million versions of their one music video that earns as many views, if not more, than the original. It has happened before, but since the start of the digital age, it is just more visible to us. A bit too much!
“B-but you are expressing a very skewed point-of-view. There are Korean movies and tv shows (not to be confused with K-dramas) that the entire world looks up to! Parasite, Memories of Murder, Last Train to Busan, Squid Game!”
You can’t make fun of greatness. But, it’s not impossible. The white characters in Squid Game sounded like an 11-year-old’s idea of a casting couch. Crossing lines, are we?!
How did it become popular? Did it have a beautiful, coronavirus-like lifecycle to it? Or was the said life cycle more plant-based? That wasn’t one of those vegan jokes. It wouldn’t have any meat in it. I completely understand and appreciate the groan you might have had when reading this. It is a piece to satisfy some sadistic impulses.
As for finding the origins of this global fandom, let’s do a deep dive.
According to an article from Martinroll,
“Since early 1999, Hallyu (Korean Wave) has become one of the biggest cultural phenomena across Asia. The Hallyu effect has been tremendous, contributing to 0.2% of Korea’s GDP in 2004, amounting to approximately USD 1.87 billion. More recently, in 2019, Hallyu had an estimated USD 12.3 billion boost on the Korean economy.”
And to add to it, 40% of my friends’ Facebook posts.
From BTS to the double male leads in every K-Drama, these ladies can’t stop. Their “love” for such individuals remains irremovable, maybe even recyclable. By the time a millennial ends up finding the right show to watch on Netflix, these soft-spoken, hard-on-typing-a-rant individuals devour content produced by the more blissful looking part of Korea, far away from their neighbours led by an overbearing and over-violent counterpart, and throw up a verbal vomit of hormonal ecstasy and centralised emotional frenzy.
Don’t ask me the meaning of the previous sentence- I have already forgotten. Welcome to the consciousness of Gen Z!
Now, being the torchbearer of unwanted discussions, I aim to present to you the essential, remedial, revolutionary list of tips and tricks that you, regardless of race, sex, or religion, can follow as a blueprint to success. By success, I mean gaining the attention of a Korean celebrity, movie and tv stars, and musicians who do not know your language but sure as hell will know your intentions by the end of my mind-blowing suggestion if you pay attention.
Do you think Mark Manson has all the unnecessary and obvious advice? Well yes. But now you will get to know me. I don’t aim to teach you The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck. Still, I will leave you with my very original sounding manifesto to humanity, titled, The Crude Art of Giving So Much of a F*ck about Braindead Content That You Will Hate Yourself Once You Get to Revisit This Phase of Your Life. Thank God for (Facebook) memories!
Let’s get to the point. You want to know how you, a nobody, a fraction of a dot in a sentence of this article called life, can approach a Korean celebrity whose relevance fills stadiums, theatres, and the entirety of your irrelevant consciousness. It is as follows:
How the hell would I know?
Classic misdirect! I’m an American resident. My deep dives will be shallow, just as your countries will be “-towns” where I live. Don’t get it? Have you ever heard of CHINAtown? KOREAtown? Little ITALY? Why do you think they’re all located in New York – the self-proclaimed most progressive city in the world? Irony, that’s why! We make a neighbourhood out of country names and Chai Tea Latte out of… tea? Which is also called chai? Does that make sense? Imagine making a building and naming it Building Structure Establishment!
Why bother? Relax. Probably, your best resort is to participate in the #Blackpink challenge on YouTube and Tiktok. I tried it too. I deleted the video. Not because I feel like I’m bigger than that. In literal terms, I am, but I will not take the (self) fat-shaming any further.
Trends appear and disappear quickly, much like most of my weekly earnings in “taxes.”
Also, is it just me, or has The Interlude been posting too much K-content lately? I sound like an immigration officer frowning after letting through a handful of Indian people at JFK Airport. Do not confuse acute observation with racism. I love black people! Two of them are my good friends. Don’t worry about the number, for I believe in quality over quantity.
The internet has brought the world closer than ever. From total strangers coming together and collectively obsessing over famous celebrities who don’t have the time or the mental capacity to care for us to us posting hilarious memes soon after the Queen’s death – myself included – we have progressed a lot… further into untraceable depths of unproductivity. Let us sit in a moment of silence, mourning the loss of our attention span and what we define as intelligence.
It’s gotten too bleak, hasn’t it? Here’s a picture of a cat! Go watch your 20 Tiktoks per hour.
Follow The Interlude for more!