Let’s Get to Know South Korean Beautiful and Talented Girl Group Under FNC Entertainment – AOA
AOA, or Ace of Angels, is a Korean band that is under FNC Entertainment. AOA consists of 7 + 1, which is Jimin, Choa, Yuna, Younkyung, Mina, Hyejeong, Seolhyun plus Chanmi. Youkyung has a special status because she is in a subunit named AOA Black and does not appear in the main group. AOA debuted on June 30th, 2012, with the song “Elvis” which was part of the first single album Angels’ Story. They first promoted the song on the stage of Mnet’s M! Countdown, on August 9th, 2012. Two months later, they released their second single titled “Wanna Be.”
Quite successful with its debut, AOA finally formed their first subunit under the name AOA Black which conceptualized a band. The subunit was comprised of ChoA (Vocalist and Guitarist), Jimin (Leader, Rapper, Guitarist), Yuna (Vocalist, Keyboardist), Youkyung (Drummer), and Mina (Bassist, Rapper, Maknae). AOA Black debuted on July 26th, 2013, with the debut single “MOYA.” After promoting their subunit, AOA made a comeback with their 3rd single “Red Motion” on October 15th.
On January 16th, 2014, they returned with their latest song “Miniskirt.” Thanks to the song they gained popularity and the song managed to occupy the first position on the SBS Inkigayo stage on February 9th. This was the first music program victory since their debut in 2012. With the success of the new concept, AOA finally launched their first mini-album titled Short Hair which was released on June 19th, 2014. While the second mini-album Like a Cat was released 5 months later, or precisely on November 11th. AOA also debuted in Japan with the single “Miniskirt” on October 1st, 2014.
AOA then released their third mini-album titled Heart Attack. The mini-album was released on June 22nd, 2015, with the concept of “Sporty.” The song managed to occupy the first position on MBC Show Champion, SBS The Show, and Music Core.
At the beginning of 2016, AOA had scheduled a comeback and AOA Black had also announced the release of their latest work. However, towards the end of January, AOA formed a new subunit called AOA Cream, with members Yuna, Hyejeong, and Chanmi. AOA Cream debuted on February 12th with the song “I ‘Jelly Jelly Baby.” Four months later, or precisely on May 16th, AOA re-launched its fourth mini-album titled Good Luck. On October 15th, 2016, Yookyung was known to leave the agency and the group because her contract had expired. Even so, Yookyung is committed to helping whenever AOA Black makes a comeback in the future.
Since their debut in 2012, AOA has not even released their first full album. After waiting 4 more years, finally, AOA launched their first studio album titled Angle’s Knock. The album was officially released on January 2nd, 2017, with 2 songs, namely “Bing Bing” and “Excuse Me.”
Controversies Surrounding AOA
Over the last two years, AOA has cemented themselves as one of K-Pop’s top girl groups. They debuted in 2012 with little success but later skyrocketed to fame after finding the perfect producer in hitmaker Brave Brothers. Riding the sexy concept craze, the girls managed to fire out a successful string of generic-yet-addictive hits like “Miniskirt,” “Short Hair,” “Like a Cat,” and their biggest song to date, “Heart Attack.”
However, they experienced some mishaps last year when the group’s two most successful members, Seolhyun and Jimin, bungled a Korean history lesson on a reality show (creating a storm of criticism), followed by a dating drama between Seolhyun and Block B’s Zico. Then, an AOA subunit didn’t do so well, before the group decided to ditch Brave Brothers for their comeback single “Good Luck” – a tune that sold less than half of their previous hits.
AOA’s Jimin and Seolhyun’s History Knowledge Controversy
Ahead of the comeback with the song “Good Luck” last May, the AOA was overtaken by controversy. Seolhyun and Jimin were found not to know historical figures and incorrectly answered questions on the “AOA Channel.” Because of this, the two AOA members received many negative comments from the netters.
On the OnStyle ‘AOA Channel’ event, Seolhyun and Jimin were faced with a quiz. They were required to guess the names of faces on the board. Some of them were figures like Yi Sun-sin, Shin Saimdang, Kim Gu, Abraham Lincoln, and An Jung-geun.
For Koreans, the local names are very familiar. Unfortunately, Seolhyun and Jimin didn’t know at all. Or maybe, they had forgotten. Nevertheless, their ignorance was broadcast live on the screen. Even though An Jung-geun is one of South Korea’s most important historical heroes.
In the event, the FNC Entertainment artists tried to find answers on the internet but they did not find them either. To the extent that the staff at the event gave clues to them to make it easier, but still, the two did not answer correctly. Until finally, after a few minutes passed, Seolhyun managed to find the answer on the internet.
The ignorance of Seolhyun and Jimin about the important figures in their country got a cynical response from netizens. “How can they not know An Jung-geun?!” said one of them. Apparently, this problem cannot be forgotten by netizens that easily since they constantly attacked Seolhyun and Jimin for their ignorance regarding history.
“They don’t know the history but represent Korea? Agencies should teach them history first before they teach them foreign languages!” wrote a netizen referring to Seolhyun’s status as a Korean tourism ambassador. “Study first! They didn’t know An Jung-geun. I’m not very clever, but if you are Korean, you must know An Jung-geun,” another comment read.
Seolhyun and Jimin each issued an apology for the incident on the ‘AOA Channel’ show. But unfortunately, netizens still continued with cynicism and denounced them.
Seolhyun’s Dating Scandal with Zico
News of celebrity romance is endless to discuss. Last April, the public was made excited by the confession of an affair between EXO’s Kai and f(x)’s Krystal Jung. This time, it was Block B’s Zico and AOA’s Seolhyun turn to be reported to have a relationship. The two different agency idols were caught dating by the Korean media Dispatch.
On Wednesday, October 8th, Dispatch released photos of Zico and Seolhyun’s dates on the Han River. In casual clothes and wearing a mask, both of them were seen riding Zico’s black Porsche.
“When Seolhyun had a difficult time because of the controversy, Zico was always there for her,” said a source who did not want to be named to Dispatch. “She (Seolhyun) also depends a lot on him.”
During a date, Zico’s private car is often their means to vent each other’s nostalgic feelings. The two idols, whose ages are 3 years apart, always wear masks while dating and avoid public places. According to Dispatch, the two of them have been in a relationship for 5 months.
Their Song Flop in Chart
AOA has just released its latest song from the first full album titled Angel’s Knock with two Music Videos at the same time for the songs “Bing Bing” and also “Excuse Me.” This sexy girl group presents two different sides for the two main music videos. AOA presents a sensual and feminine side to both of these comeback video music. But netizens don’t seem to be very impressed by this AOA comeback. Some commented that this time, AOA’s comeback can be considered a failure compared to their previous songs, such as “Heart Attack” and “Good Luck.”
“AOA’s new song is really ugly. Very flop.”
“Their new song is really terrible. Who created the choreography? What happened to this album?”
“The rap is very annoying, especially in the song ‘Bing Bing’.”
“Cosmic Girls can even beat them,” netizens complained about AOA’s new song.
This complaint is inseparable from several scandals that afflicted AOA members, such as Jimin and Seolhyun. Netizens even predicted that AOA would not last long in the K-Pop music industry if only one member worked well.
Choa’s Dating Scandal
Media are now reporting that AOA Choa is in a relationship with Lee Suk-jin, a CEO of a gaming company called Najin.
According to an exclusive report by Sports Seoul, Choa has been dating Lee Suk-jin in a very careful manner as their relationship is the early stages. Lee Suk-jin is the CEO of a gaming company called Najin. His company manages computer repair shops around Korea and additionally also owns professional e-Sports gaming teams.
Super Junior’s Heechul was reportedly a big help in making this relationship a reality for both Choa and Lee Suk-jin. Heechul is well known for being very interested in video games and that’s how he became friends with Lee Suk-jin. After becoming friends, insiders report that he helped start the initial introductions between Choa and Lee Suk-jin.
Lee Suk-jin is a well-known AOA fan in the e-Sports community and reportedly visited AOA concerts and events regularly. After getting to know Choa, he went from being a fan to being a boyfriend. The report also mentioned that insiders in the e-Sports community reportedly already knew about Choa and Lee Suk-jin’s relationship as it was widely known amongst them.
FNC Entertainment made the following statement regarding the dating reports. “We are behind the news about Choa. We will make a second statement after we know more,” said FNC Entertainment.
Choa Officially Leaves AOA!
After a vacuum from various group activities, AOA’s Choa finally announced that she would be leaving the group. Choa also made her official announcement via a post on her Instagram account on Thursday, June 22nd, 2017.
Choa wrote a long caption and mentioned the reason for leaving the group that had raised her name. Previously, many fans speculated about the state of Choa and now she also stated that she left AOA because of depression and insomnia.
Here is the message from Choa that she wrote on her Instagram post.
“Hello, this is Choa. I’m sure many people are shocked by the cessation of my activities in the group. Many people are worried and curious about me, so I say thank you for that. I want to say that the reason why I have to rest and the decisions I have made are not easy for me.”
“Shortly after AOA debuted, AOA did not immediately receive a lot of love so I learned that love is something that must be appreciated and very important. That’s why I am very grateful for getting a lot of love and support.”
“In my group, I’m as Unnie (oldest member), but in my heart, I’m still very young. When I do promotions, I often want to cry. However, the reason people come and support me is that they want to see a smile on my face and a happy me. I know that, but in my heart, I actually want to cry. This cycle keeps repeating until finally, I realize that inside me I feel sick.”
“I suffer from insomnia and depression and have received treatment. During the promotion period in the last 2 years, I have quite reduced my activities and when I rest it seems like I can’t really rest. There are still many eyes that see me and I realize that this feeling will continue and I might turn into an obstacle to my group.”
“After discussing with my agency, starting from today… I am no longer a member of AOA. I will leave the group and I hope people continue to give support to my group. When I was a celebrity for 8 years, I learned a lot. I also realized that the difficult times I had to face would make me grow over time. I saw that as an opportunity to learn.”
“This year I will be 28 years old. I will reflect on the turbulent times in my life and will work hard to improve myself for the future and to enjoy the rest of my 20s.”
“In addition to my personal activities, there are no other activities that I think of. When I am no longer afraid and become better, then I will come back and show myself in a better light. Please continue to support and pray for my best when that time arrives. You are still there to support me, surely I will return.”
“There are so many people who support me to this day and always worry about me. I’m very grateful because you have given me support and love.”
“To the members of my group, who are always beside me at all times, I’m also very grateful.”
“To all those who love me and AOA, I’m really thankful.”