NeeNee’s Thoughts on Trending

Ah, so funny. Whenever something newish seems to pop up in the entertainment world it gets done to death when it becomes a big hit.

Queen Inhyeon’s Man was about a Joseon-era scholar who ends up getting transported to the modern world where he falls for a modern girl while going back and forth through time. He looks up historical references to find out what happened in the past and does his best to stop the assignation attempts of Queen Inhyeon.

Rooftop Prince was about a Joseon-era crown prince and his three servants who spring forward through time while investigating the death of the crown princess. In the present day, our prince falls for a modern girl (and lets no forget about all the reincarnations here) while he tries to solve the mystery of his princess’s death.

Time Slip Dr. Jin is about a modern doctor transported back to the Joseon era. It’s in reverse this time. Yes, it’s based on a manga that was turned into a very popular Japanese drama that had 2 seasons. And last year and this year is is no exception for all the mangas getting live action adaptations in several Asian countries.

I Love Lee Tae Ri is about a 14-year-old boy who suddenly transforms into a 25-year-old man. The boy wanted to find a way to make his fiancee who is 7 years older than him (a marriage arranged between families) fall for him. Lee Tae Ri is a jaded woman who simply wishes for a friend closer to her own age (instead of a 14-year-old boy).

Big is about a teenager who swaps souls with an older man.

That being said, China or Taiwan just did one of their first soul-switching movie between genders. Sound like Secret Garden at all?

Oh, and this is the year for medical/forensic dramas in Japan and Korea.

And music?

I don’t know which group started it, but last year and this year saw retro making a comeback. From the shuffle dance and it’s subsequent music to 20s swing-inspired music, it’s back in full force. We had Secret’s “Shy Boy,” T-ARA’s “Lovey Dovey” and “Roley Poley.” X-Cross’s 3 singles all were shuffle-dance enthused. And let’s not forget that it was virtually 2PM with “I’ll Be Back” that re-introduced the world to shuffle dance (probably not that dramatic, but they did it first before it became a big trend again).

We have also seen the trend in “clock dances.” U-KISS with “Tik Tok,” IU with oh. that song whose name I’ve forgotten (though I do love that song), and I think even LEDApple had some clock hand movements when they did “Time’s Up.” There are more, too.

This is also the year for kpop groups with some back stories. We have EXO’s grand back story for their two groups that makes them from a different planet. And we have B.A.P who were introduced through a program where they played aliens who became idols in order to gather energy from screaming fangirls to save their planet.

This is also the year for powerful songs (and angry songs if you think about it). We have B.A.P’s “Power” and “Warrior” and EXO’s “Mama.” We’ve seen several groups comeback with very different images (B1A4, Dalmatian, etc.).

Yeah, so trends. They can actually be scary sometimes. They also make what was refreshing blase as EVERYTHING soon follows suit.

We also have an explosion of rookie groups, which is nothing new. I remember Sunggyu from Infinite stating that increasing amount of idol groups is scary. It is. It is. And in the myriad there are some good ones, but most seem to be average or nearly blatant knock offs of trendy groups.


  • I wonder if the entertainment industry is completely drained of inspiration that they feel the need to copy each other. At least they shouldn’t make it so obvious that they’re stealing ideas from one another.

    I actually found it hilarious to watch how all these time travel dramas started to come out one after another. It was just ridiculously funny. Apparently Lee Min Ho’s new drama Faith is also about time travel. Only, too bad it’s the last (for now) of the time travel bunch to come out, viewers must be dead tired from this theme already.

    When it comes to gender-bending and body switching then I think that is just one of the all time favourite themes for Asian dramas. So I don’t think that idea will ever stop being recycled.

    • Well, some stories are okay enough that they stand above the pack and other ones, you get this, Haven’t I already watched this feeling?

      Trends are scary. It’s not necessarily that the industry has run out of ideas, but rather that they are trying to capitalize on projects that really took off and made money by basically using them as building blocks.

      Ah, I forgot Faith was another time travel drama. We also Bu Bu Jing Xin and Gong last year. And I think there were a few other Taiwanese/Chinese time travel dramas. But just look how similar those two particular series were. They weren’t 100% the same, but they were really alike causing an uproar on plagiarism, stealing, etc.

      I wonder what the next few drama seasons will have in store for us…

      Well, I don’t mind gender-bending or body switching too much as long as it is convincing enough. Secret Garden was good in that aspect as was Ikemen desu ne. But other dramas I am looking at girls who are posing at guys and trying to figure out how no one noticed that these rather thin buys have a rather large chest.

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