[OP-ED This post reflects the opinions of the author and not those of allkpop.]
On May 24, it was announced that the Pledis girl group, PRISTIN was disbanding. Hearing the news, many fans were devastated because PRISTIN which debuted in 2017, was barely two years old and the fact that they had so much potential makes it all the more heartbreaking that they were disbanding. In this article, I want to talk about why I feel the girls in PRISTIN deserved so much better than the cards they were dealt.
Firstly, I think it was extremely upsetting because the girls had so much potential as seen from how well their debut was received by the public. PRISTIN had even won the best new female artist award in 2017, and they were the most successful group that had members from the former group IOI. PRISTIN was greatly loved and so many people were excited for what they had planned in store because as rookies, they already showed amazing stage presence and they had so many great songs. However, for 2 years, they had no official comebacks and no promotions. (This is if you don’t count their subunit PRISTIN V as a comeback)
I think it is obvious to say that PRISTIN deserved more than what they were given because so many people were ready to support them but they were not even given a platform for them to showcase their talent. As many of you know, Nayoung, Roa, Yuha, Eunwoo, Rena, Kyulkyung, and Xiyeon were all on the show 'Produce 101' and on the show, they showed everyone not only their talent but their desire to debut. It is extremely heartbreaking that they worked so hard to debut as PRISTIN only to face two years of inactivity before finally disbanding.
Also, PRISTIN members have all been with Pledis for many years. Xiyeon has been with Pledis for 11 years while Jieqiong and Sungyeon have been there for 10 years, Nayoung and Kyla have been there for 9 years, Rena for 8 years, Roa, Eunwoo, and Yehana for 5 years and Yuha for 4 years. Taking into account that the oldest member is only 24 and the youngest is 18, these girls have literally spent more than half their lives training for a chance to be able to perform for an audience. And the saddest thing is that they had an audience that wanted to support them, they just weren’t given the opportunity.
While fans are upset about this happening to PRISTIN, many also noted how this is not the first time Pledis hasn’t done the best job in managing a female group. Orange Caramel and After School are two other groups that were popular but just didn’t get the chance to come back. Lee Kaeun from After School has even spoken out about it during her time with After School on 'Produce 48.' She mentioned how after she debuted, she thought she had made it, but then she was given a few comebacks and then nothing. In my opinion, Pledis is fully able to promote their artist well and give them opportunities to show their potential. Just by looking at how well they manage Seventeen, it is clear that Pledis is capable of treating the groups they manage well and helping them grow to their fullest potential. (This is not to drag Seventeen, they are amazing and they deserve everything) But what I am trying to ask is if they can do such a good job with Seventeen, why can’t they give the same opportunities to their other groups? Especially groups like PRISTIN who had a large fanbase ready to support them.
What makes it even sadder is that the members are apologizing for PRISTIN’s disbandment even though it was something completely out of their control. Xiyeon has spoken out saying how sorry she is for everyone who had loved and waited for PRISTIN and how though this is the end of her activities, she will still work hard to make up for all the love that she had been given. Other than Xiyeon, Nayoung and Eunwoo have also came out to thank HIghs for their love and support and talked about how they will also work harder in the future. It’s just upsetting to see them apologizing as if the reason why PRISTIN was disbanding was because they were lacking in any way. Because the truth of the matter is they were not lacking in any aspect. The girls don’t need to be apologizing for anything, because everyone can see that they have worked hard, they showed the best versions of themselves and gave everything they had in the short time they were given as PRISTIN.
Pristin is made up of 10 talented girls that worked their asses off to win best new female group back in 2017, only to not be given comebacks or any decent promotions. And now even the members are apologising? They really deserve better 😭 pic.twitter.com/Du57Cqfkns— exocomebaek (@exocomebaeks) May 24, 2019
To conclude this article, I really do think that PRISTIN deserved better, so much better. They are 10 talented girls that dedicated their lives and spent many years working towards their dream of being on stage. Even though their time as PRISTIN was short, we hope they know that many people are still supporting them and rooting for them. It was revealed that Nayoung, Roa, Yuha, Eunwoo, Rena, Xiyeon, and Kyla have terminated their contracts, while Kyulkyung, Yehana, and Sungyeon will still continue being under Pledis Entertainment. Wherever the girls may be in the future, please do continue to support each and every one of them! Thank you PRISTIN.