Do you ever look back at old pictures of your parents from when they were younger? Of course you do.
For my fellow 90's babies out there, what we see in those photographs more or less overlap - pants that are pulled up way too high for anyone to be comfortable, puffy hair that gives our moms an extra few inches of height, and for our dads, short John Stockton shorts that should have been burned decades ago.
Nevertheless, the experience of sifting through old photographs has such an odd and endearing power of making us feel out of place.
K-pop is no different. For those of us who were still in diapers and busy raising hell for our parents during the 90's, we really don't appreciate old school K-pop nearly as much as we should. And frankly, looking back at some of the trends that defined the inception of Korean pop culture can feel otherworldly.
So when we say "90's K-pop," what comes to mind? Baggy pants and hairstyles that should be publicly condemned are usually the big ones. But trust us, that's only scratching the surface.
K-pop back then and K-pop now are, without a doubt, of two different standards. And, as with the case of our parents' old photographs, it's always fun to compare some of the social norms of the different generations. So without further ado, let's travel back a decade or so and see some of the things that 90's K-pop got away with.
Saying curse words in the beginning of a live broadcast (NFSW)
There's no better way to fluff up your performance and pump up your fans than with a few of your choicest curse words. Back then, TV producers weren't as well versed in English so sometimes artists would take advantage by using choice words that would go unfiltered on the broadcast and get away with it. Gotta love that the song is titled "Chivalry", oh, the irony.
Looking as though your hair caught on fire
And being applauded for it.
Backup dancers had considerable swag
Random Nonsensical Rapping?
String together as many English words you can remember and hope it looks like you know what you're doing. Brownie points if your words make as little sense as possible. I love all the charity work by Jinusean's Sean but his lyrical content wasn't so generous back then. Check out his rap, starting at 0:55 above.
Wearing oven mitts while holding your mic never looked so socially acceptable
These lovely ladies made fanboys everywhere melt
Are you swooning yet?
You could wear clothes like this without people spitting on you
Your makeup coordinator thought it'd be really cute to make her artists look like up-and-coming drag queens
Crazy Drunk dancing = Cool dancing
Kudos to whoever came up with the ideas for the props - the microphone attached to the pinky and the phenomenal fan. Innovation in all its glory.
You could walk on stage wearing a wig and carpet without breaking any fanboys' hearts
Wardrobe coordinators didn't get fired for borrowing costumes from the Teletubbies for their artists