K-Pop

NewJeans’ Recent Stages Spark Controversy: A Rollercoaster of Divergent Opinions

Recent stages of NewJeans have consistently received mixed opinions

After over a year since their debut, NewJeans is still riding high with a string of “all-kill” products. With a career that stands out among their peers, NewJeans effortlessly secures prime spots on prestigious stages, elevating their status and popularity. In just November alone, Min Hee Jin’s group took three big stages: the League of Legends World Championship, BBMAs 2023, and the Blue Dragon Awards. Yet, despite their success, the reception to NewJeans’ performances has been a rollercoaster of opinions.

NewJeans at 2023 League of Legends World Championship Final

NewJeans faced controversy for their performance at the League of Legends World Championship, as some fans felt they lacked the capacity to “handle” the theme song. Immediately after the LOL 2023 final night, NewJeans’ stage trended globally. Many viewers acknowledged the effort, performance skills, and explosive stage setup of the ADOR girls. However, many League of Legends fans argued that NewJeans lacked the capability to ‘kill’ the theme song “GODs.” A Reddit topic gained many comments criticizing NewJeans’ first performance and receiving numerous agreements.

Specifically, NewJeans’ performance was compared to a talent show at a secondary school: “Anyway, the performance quality was truly at the level of something you’d have to endure at a middle school talent show. From the blatant lip-syncing to the random choreography that didn’t fit the song whatsoever, I was ready to close my tab halfway through. I just wanted to leave.

A lot of people will try to defend this performance by saying that NewJeans is just too inexperienced and needed to go on tour first. But the reality is they have already had more performance reps than most groups that are 2 or even 3 years into their career.

At some point, we need to accept that NewJeans simply do not possess the vocals nor the stage presence to carry a performance without turning it into some TikTok dance party. As awkward as the choreography may have been, it was necessary for this specific performer. Vocals aside, their overall body language tends to be weak and unsure of what to do when they don’t have a finely rehearsed choreography to dance with. We shouldn’t blame, but rather thank Riot for recognizing and trying to play to their strengths.”

With their current direction, NewJeans focuses on developing their image as a teen idol group with catchy songs and easy-to-do choreography. While NewJeans is embraced by the younger generation and has become a generational icon, they are still under pressure when performing on large stages. Being chosen to sing the theme song for the League of Legends World Championship, the first female group to perform on the final night, NewJeans seems to be wearing a somewhat oversized coat.

In addition, the performance skills of the group are considered stable but lackluster. Doing live AR is a technique applied by many K-pop groups to ensure stable quality when singing and dancing. However, constantly using live AR also causes the girls to receive a lot of criticism.

But even when singing live without making mistakes, NewJeans still faces criticism

NewJeans’ latest stage at the Blue Dragon Awards 2023 attracted much attention. Returning for the second consecutive year to the prestigious film awards ceremony, performing in front of many A-list actors, NewJeans presented a well-prepared, flawless performance. The performance included two new hits, “ETA” and “Super Shy,” bringing a lively atmosphere. They were enthusiastically supported by top Korean stars.

However, there are still mixed opinions from Knets regarding NewJeans’ performance at the Blue Dragon Awards. In their dynamic schoolgirl outfits, the ETA – Super Shy stage was indeed attractive with cute dance moves and expressions from the five members. Furthermore, NewJeans performed live at the Blue Dragon Awards. Although the performance was stable from start to finish, there were still lacking exciting segments.

Knet’s opinions:

  • It’s okay, not bad, generally a safe performance.
  • I knew Danielle and Hanni would do well, but Hyein was better than I thought. The rap part seems difficult, but she handled it well.
  • Despite some shortcomings, I’m glad they sang live. Lip-syncing is even more annoying.
  • Should have used a larger AR and danced more passionately.
  • The audio of NewJeans always sounds good, but there’s always something missing from this group. Not to mention the skills, the music sounds captivating, but the performance doesn’t leave much of an impression.
newjeans

In 2022, NewJeans was often praised by Knet for their performance skills although they were still caught doing lip-syncing. In contrast, other female groups, such as aespa or IVE, were frequently criticized by netizens for live singing issues. However, NewJeans seemed to be an exception. They still received public support despite controversies related to their performance skills. However, it seems the public perception has changed, and NewJeans is no longer an exception.

Source: K14

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