K-pop first started gaining traction around the world in the 1990s—a phenomenon known as the “Hallyu Wave”. Dubbed as the “increase in global popularity of South Korean culture” according to Wikipedia, the Philippines was also caught in said wave. Thus, Filipinos embraced the music, the groups, and everything about this pop culture.
During the earlier stages, we were introduced to groups like Wonder Girls, BigBang, Girls’ Generation (or SNSD), and more. Another group included in the mix is Super Junior, who is considered as the “King of Hallyu Wave” by both media and the Korean Music Awards for their significant contribution to music. This group first debuted on November 6, 2005, and are now celebrating their 15th anniversary.
We may know them for their hit song “Sorry, Sorry”, but who exactly is Super Junior?
Super Junior’s Debut
According to a report from AllKpop.com, Super Junior is the longest-running male group. Originally a project group with 12 members, Super Junior was represented by SM Entertainment. The group debuted on November 6, 2005, through SBS’s “Inkigayo” and eventually changed their name to “Super Junior 05.” Members back then include Leeteuk, Heechul, Han Geng, Yesung, Kangin, Shindong, Sungmin, Eunhyuk, Siwon, Donghae, Ryeowook, and Kibum.
Eventually, in 2006, Kyuhyun joined the group. With the song and title track of their third full album in 2009, “Sorry, Sorry”, Super Junior began gaining popularity in Korea. In fact, the song was not just a hit in Korea, but also overseas.
Starting in 2010, the members were not seen together for almost ten years because of the mandatory military service imposed by South Korea. Despite this, Super Junior kept busy by actively promoting through various unit groups. The first to form sub-groups, Super Junior soon became Super Junior K.R.Y (Kyuhyun, Ryeowook, and Yesung), Super Junior T (Leeteuk, Heechul, Shindong, Sungmin, and Eunhyuk), Super Junior M (Sungmin, Eunhyuk, Siwon, Zhou Mi, Donghae, Ryeowook, and Kyuhyun), Super Junior Happy (Leeteuk, Yesung, Shindong, Sungmin, and Eunhyuk), and Super Junior D&E (Donghae and Eunhyuk). There, members got to try out different genres of music and showcase their talents better.
Controversies and Hardships
Being in the industry for 15 years is no easy feat and it wasn’t smooth sailing all the way. Wrought with controversies, starting with Chinese members Hankyung, Ki Bum, and Kang In leaving the group, the members had to deal with dating and marriage issues, accidents, and personal problems of their own. But not letting that stop them, the group persevered and got to where they are today.
Super Junior Now
Currently, Super Junior has nine active members—Leeteuk, Heechul, Yesung, Shindong, Donghae, Eunhyuk, Siwon, Ryeowook, and Kyuhyun. On the other hand, Sungmin has been on hiatus since 2015.
Beyond performing and launching new albums as Super Junior, the members have ventured into various fields of entertainment as well—from hosting and being part of variety shows, starring in K-dramas, debuting a cookbook, launching albums using their sub-unit label, and more.
Super Junior became known for “Super Show,” a series of concerts that started in 2008 and has been held more than 150 times in more than 20 regions around the world. However, due to the ongoing pandemic, Super Junior met fans virtually through “Beyond the Super Show”, an online event hosted on V Live. In addition, they continuously communicate with ELFs (the official fandom name) through “SJ News” and the “2020 Super Junior Awards.”
Super Junior 15th Anniversary
Super Junior held a special live stream on their VLive platform last Friday, November 6. It started at 5 PM KST (or 4 PM, Philippine time).
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“Something impossible happened. We made it through 15 years. Pushing through and not giving up has brought us here,” said Leeteuk, leader of Super Junior, on his social media accounts. “We’ll keep going. Members, fans, staff—everyone, I love you and look up to you.”
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정말 말도 안되는 일이 일어났네요 우리가15년을 버텼습니다 살아남았네요 이 악물고 버텼고 포기하지 않았더니 이런날이 오긴 오네요 예전에는 10년만 넘어도 선생님 소리를 들었는데 슈주 선생님들 고생많았고 앞으로도 고생할 예정입니다. 내일은 나아지겠지 좀 편해지겠지 생각하면 큰 오산입니다. 아직 여러분들이 핫하기 때문이죠 그러니까 짜증내고 투정부려도 좋으니 같이 가셔야 합니다 무섭죠?15주년때 팀이 이렇게 건재할거 아무도 예상 못했죠? 그러니 내가 끌고 갑니다 우리 죽어서도 천국 슈퍼쇼 투어 있어요 계속 갑니다 오늘만 즐기세요 고생했어요 멤버,팬,스텝 여러분 존경하고 사랑합니다?
During the live stream, Super Junior released their new album, ‘The Melody‘ at 6 PM and it can be found on Spotify. In addition, Super Junior will be having a fan meet on November 7. Meanwhile, in December, Super Junior will release their 10th full-length album.
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