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It’s been one year since GFRIEND’s disbandment, but the members have not yet made a breakthrough from the shadow of GFRIEND

One year after GFRIEND’s sudden disbandment, the members have walked on their own paths but no one has gained significant achievements.

It’s been a year since GFRIEND disbanded. The members decided to disband the group for their own different dreams but still couldn’t get out of the shadow of GFRIEND. A year has passed since the group disbandment but they are still more well-known as “former GFRIEND members” than as solo singers, actresses, or the name of their new group.

In May last year, GFRIEND shocked fans as they suddenly announced their disbandment. At that time, GFRIEND’s agency Source Music said, “Our exclusive contract with GFRIEND will end on May 22nd”, adding, “GFRIEND and our company decided to come up with this decision after a long and in-depth discussion in order to let the members show better appearances on their own paths.”

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SinB, Eun-ha and Um-ji formed the new group VIVIZ in January. It is known that Um-ji didn’t sleep during the filming for VIVIZ’s new song “BOP BOP!” music video. This shows how determined the three members were when making a comeback as VIVIZ after GFRIEND’s disbandment. We could easily notice how VIVIZ urgently wanted to release their re-debut album. All members were confirmed to be infected with Covid-19 right before the release of the album but they went on V LIVE and inform fans that the release plan would not be affected.

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Despite their effort and passion, VIVIZ received a relatively disappointing result. Their song “BOP BOP!” only won two No.1 trophies on music shows, showing a large difference compared to their achievement during GFRIEND activities. In particular, GFRIEND’s 3rd mini album “Rough” won 15 music show trophies. In addition, VIVIZ is currently competing on Mnet’s “Queendom 2” but the group ranks lower than many other rival girl groups.

Ye-rin and Yu-ju became solo artists, but they didn’t get as much attention as when they were still active with GFRIEND. In fact, Yu-ju’s song “Play” got pushed out of music charts shortly after its release. The eldest member So-won is preparing to become an actress but she has not shown any significant activities for the whole year after the disbandment.

Yuju
baek yerin

GFRIEND debuted in 2015 and disbanded in 2021. Like many other K-pop groups, they could not break the seven-year jinx. K-pop stars often start off with a 7-year exclusive contract. SM Entertainment’s contract renewal with some TVXQ members in 2009 once caused huge controversy.

In the wake of this incident, a standard for exclusive contracts that said “The first exclusive contract period should be 7 years” appeared. This is why many idol groups will be reorganized or disbanded after 7 years. Although this is a provision set to protect idols from “slave contracts”, another negative theory of the “7-year jinx on idol groups” emerged. 

Cultural critic Ha Jae-gun said, “It is true that there had been many bad effects before the seven-year idol exclusive contract standard was applied in the past. These days, most idol groups disband for individual activities. Fans will be disappointed but they should understand the members’ situation. The problem is that if the contract period of more than 7 years is used again, it will not make any improvements compared to the past.”

GFRIEND is not the only group that cannot make a breakthrough after their disbandment. A number of idol groups, such as DIA, Lovelyz, and MissA, were also disbanded under the “seven-year jinx”.

In order to not be overshadowed by their previous image as a member of a group, it is necessary for idols to improve their ability to gain attention with skills and star reputation. The only successful 3rd generation girl group member is Suzy. Bae Suzy is attracting public attention as an actress rather than a singer. An idol cannot survive in the entertainment industry unless they have more skills than others.

The sudden comeback of GFRIEND members also did not gain much public sympathy. Some members tried to return to activities only a few months after the group disbandment. Since the color of GFRIEND has been so well-known and accepted by the public, VIVIZ is only recognized as a unit group of GFRIEND due to their rushing comeback.

 The rival of former GFRIEND members turns out to be the big shadow called GFRIEND. The members are being overshadowed by their own old image. Therefore, they will have to try harder to break the shell and show their potential under their own names to be recognized by the public. 

Source: Daum

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