Before the news of leader Ji Min bullying former member Kwon Mina for 10 years, AOA were caught in lots of controversies such as the main vocalist leaving the group, making netizens question whether or not there existed internal conflict within the girls.
On July 3, Kwon Mina – former AOA member – revealed that she had been bullied by one of her groupmate for 10 years. The female idol born in 1993 even used to attemp suicide because of stress and anxiety. The incident quickly gained the attention of Kpop fans. The majority of netizens support Mina and believe that there is a problem within AOA. However, some think that no one should rush to conclusions to avoid hurting innocent people. After that, past controversies of AOA were also brought back by netizens.
AOA debuted in July 2012 with the single Angel’s Story and the title song Elvis. Initially, the group pursued a refreshing, playful image and had a unit of 5 members who could play musical instruments. However, this style did not gain much public attention. The FNC Entertainment’s group was considered lackluster compared to other idols at that time. AOA then decided to change to a sexy concept and blew up thanks to the songs Miniskirt, Short Hair, Like A Cat, Heart Attack…
The sexy performances helped AOA gain more popularity but also made the group stumble upon many criticisms regarding their outfits and choreography. To show off their sexiness, the female idols often wore tight and high cut skirts. At many shows, AOA used to be criticized for wearing too short and revealing outfits. Besides, some of the group’s songs were also said to have inappropriate choreography. On the internet, many harassing comments were seen when the girls wore sexy outfits.
The most popular member in AOA is Seol Hyun. The visual born in 1995 has always been on the list of the sexiest female stars in Kbiz thanks to her lovely face and hot body. Thanks to the golden ratio body with tiny ant waist and honey thighs, Seol Hyun received many advertising contracts for big brands. She is one of the most expensive advertising models in Kbiz. Many items skyrocketed in sales thanks to Seol Hyun’s appearance in promotional videos.
On Korean social media, many people used to call Seol Hyun a “national treasure”. She is considered one of the top female stars in Korea. Her name is often put next to Suzy, YoonA, IU… Because of Seol Hyun’s individual popularity, there was a time when people even called AOA “Seol Hyun and friends”. AOA was rumored to face internal conflict because of the difference in popularity. The group took much time to balance the popularity among members.
Besides Seol Hyun, main vocal ChoA is also a member that got much love from Korean public. The female singer born in 1990 is known for her unique voice, Barbie-like visual, cheerful and bubbly personality. Knetz once said ChoA and Seol Hyun are the two members who had to work hardest to “hard carry” AOA. After 5 years as an AOA member, ChoA announced her departure in June 2017 due to depression and insomnia. She stated that she had tried using medication to help for 2 years, but there was no improvement in her mental health.
“I suffered from insomnia and depression and even got treated for it. During 2 years, my promotions were cut back a bit, but even when I was resting it really wasn’t resting.” ChoA revealed in her letter to fans. She decided to take a break from the entertainment industry. Three years later, the 30-year-old singer still disappears from the media, not appearing in crowded places.
After ChoA, Kwon Mina also announced to leave the group in May 2019 because her contract expired. The 27-year-old idol decided to switch to acting. Korean public were quite regretful about Mina’s departure.
Before leaving the group, Kwon Mina was also in the top 3 outstanding members of AOA. On online community sites, there were many posts praising her attractive body and visual that attracted a lot of likes and comments. Fans praised Mina for having an “hourglass figure” and a doll-like body ratio.
Currently, AOA is active with 5 members. The group received much love from the public after joining the Mnet show Queendom. Thanks to Queendom, 5 FNC girls were able to showcase many talented sides such as singing, rapping, stage directing,… Knetz were quite surprised at AOA’s ability because the members used to get bashed a lot for “only having visuals”. Currently, the incident of Kwon Mina accusing Shin Ji Min of bullying her for 10 years is said to greatly affect the group’s reputation.