Coming Up: A Week With Tohoshinki

Before you run away from the sheer amount of DBSK(TVXQ), let me say that I’ve come back from the dead for a moment to talk about what I’ll be uploading in the coming weeks, which is a series all things Tohoshinki, from the shallow to the hard to swallow. [Please read the FAQ below to find out why I’m doing this] This series is called “Dong Bang Shin Ki, A History” or “DBSK, A History” because I’m going to loosely treat this material very much like “Hogwarts, A History,” in that a lot of what is going to be discussed will stay pretty objective, but inclusive of as much as possible.  The reason I chose to use their Korean name in the title, as opposed to their Japanese one, is that Korea represents their beginnings (I know I use Tohoshinki a lot around here, but that’s just my preference, as I lean towards their Japanese music.)

Petty details aside, It’s going to be one heck of a Tohoshinki week, and by the end both you and I will be done with Tohoshinki for a while—and I mean a long while.

Posts Topics (no guarantees):

  • Reviews of Albums
  • Progression of Style over Time
  • The Influence of Japan
  • How Tohoshinki has influenced others, and who has influenced them.
  • What it’s like being THE major link between 1st and 2nd generation K-pop
  • All Things Lawsuit/ The Name Game.
  • Idol Industry versus the Idol
  • Tohoshinki’s Lawsuit versus KARA’s Almost Lawsuit.
  • The Best of TVXQ (the Duo)
  • The Best of JYJ
  • The Best Photoshoots
  • The Best Live Performances
  • My Opinions on the Blame Game
  • The Problem with the Fractured Cassiopeia of Today
  • Fanservice/”Intra-group Relationships”
  • Why “Familial Structures” exist in K-pop Groups
  • The Saesangs, and Fandom
  • What Made Me Like Tohoshinki as a Post-2009 Fan
  • When Reality Meets Fantasy: Has Fanfiction Gone Too Far?
  • K-pop A cappella (Which Tohoshinki probably made 90% of, when they still did A cappella)

As these posts come out, I’ll hyperlink all of them here, and create a special page for them. Either way, the first post should tell you where to find the rest.  If people like this enough, I start doing some more “special series” in a manner a lot like this one.

Some FAQs/Notes/Disclaimers

  • So why are you spending a week talking about Tohoshinki of all people in Kpop?

As much as they are pretty much my favorite boy band ever, that is not the reason I’m choosing to talk about them at length. Tohoshinki is great to talk about because of all the major K-pop topics/issues they’ve become central to, such as, fandom with internal strife, saesangs at a ridiculous level, lawsuits (treatment of idols in industry), vocal competency, Idol v. Artist, Idol compostions, bridging two generations of idol music, Japanese endeavors, and more. Like Hamlet is a literary landmine, Tohoshinki is a landmine when it comes to looking critically at K-pop and its associated culture.  There are literally a thousand topics to get into with them because they have had a decade of very unique experiences that basically highlight everything good and terrible about K-pop. While most K-pop is like a world of sensationalism and consumerism, Tohoshinki ended up in the all too strange boundary between ethereal persona and a product. That may not make very much sense right now, but I promise it will soon.

[I know most sites tend of focus on what made DBSK so “great,” or start from a particular side of the conflict and convince everyone of its merits. However I want to re-emphasize that it’s NOT quite how it’s going to be here. I’m just using DBSK as a lens through which we can look at K-pop as a whole.]

  • How are you going to organize this?

I’ll probably start out with the Tohoshinki basics, so the unfamiliar can get familiar and then I’ll hit all the not so pretty.  There will be some hard feelings along the way, but this is all part of the process. That said, I don’t want anyone to really get hurt and have people blacklist each other.  For that reason, there are going to be some basic guidelines.  (BTW, Posts that will be very touchy will be tagged as such.)

    • Please, please comment. These are going to discussion based articles and reader input and perspective is very important.  I’ll even remove the email requirement for the time being if that bothers you.
    • I will be moderating comments regularly (if they show up), and if I see anything that I feel to be incredibly rude or short sighted, it will be removed/flagged in some manner.  This is not a place for OT5, TVX2, and JYJ fans to duke it out, nor do I want it to be. Please remember that this is NOT a K-pop only blog.  Yes, K-pop is an important element here, but it’s not the main purpose of this blog. Everything is going to remain in the realm of intelligent discussions about motivations (i.e. why do people act the way they do?) TL;DR: I don’t want anything but positive commentary (not necessarily positive content) from all of you.  I will not tolerate people putting down other people’s tastes in music or biases in a thoughtless manner.
    • My opinions on the blame game will be a harsh overview of everyone involved in the lawsuit from Cassiopeia to Lee Soo Man.  It will be honest about everything that everyone did that steamrolled into the terrible lawsuit mess. This is not a pretty post, and it was quite difficult for me to write.  I am going to remain candid here, and just put the disclaimer that this is just MY logical progression on what went horribly wrong. Since I’ll be very opinionated—and tonally going to speak with some vitriol—I will allow (and want) people to question what I say; however, I will not condone hurting other people.
    • These rules are not meant to discourage anyone. I just don’t want anyone to be hurt at the end of this roller-coaster ride.
    • Have Fun! There’s going to be some lighthearted stuff too.

I hope to see you there, and that we’ll all learn a lot from the experience! As always, please like and comment as well 🙂

(Photo Credits: SM Entertainment)


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