"We're Super Juni~or!" It has already been fifteen years since a group of men shouted this motto as their introduction.
The group Super Junior has been doing a variety of things for the past 15 years. There were times of hardship for the group, but what is clear is that the team and individual members firmly maintained their position and have proved themselves to be the eldest in K-pop and the most 'Super' in the Korean music industry.
Being an idol group for fifteen years is meaningful in itself. However, Super Junior is not just simply the longest-running male group, but it also maintains global popularity all over the world. Above all, they are the group representing the Korean K-pop wave as they have pioneered a new path by taking different steps from existing idols.
Super Junior stated as a project group with twelve members. They debuted on November 6, 2005, through SBS's 'Inkigayo.' They made their debut with the name 'Super Junior 05'.
After the addition of member Kyuhyun, the group began gaining full-fledged popularity in Korean. In particular, their song "Sorry Sorry," the title track to their third full album in 2009, was a mega-hit not only in Korea but overseas.
Starting in 2010, Super Junior was not seen all together for almost ten years due to the mandatory military service for the members. However, Super Junior kept active promotion through various unit groups. Super Junior was the first of the idol groups to promote in unite groups and were able to show off various charms they had not shown before. Through Super Junior K.R.Y, Super Junior T, Super Junior M, Super Junior Happy, and Super Junior D&E, all the members were able to show various of their characteristics and trying different genres of music. Within the multi-member group, each member's different strengths and musical tastes were able to unfold as the group could expand their spectrum and create new synergies steadily.
Super Junior was the first Korean group to hold a solo concert in France and tour in South America, and the first Asian singer to hold a solo concert in Saudi Arabia. As a K-pop artist, Super Junior is loved in various countries worldwide, not in certain regions. The group has met with fans in person through the 'Super Show,' which started in 2008. The 'Super Show' has become Super Junior's branded concert that has been held more than 150 times in more than 20 regions around the world.
However, when it became impossible to have a face-to-face concert or overseas tour with the COVID19, Super Junior met 123,000 fans around the world through the "Beyond the Super Show." They also continuously and actively communicate with the world's Elf (official fandom) through "SJ News" and the "2020 Super Junior Awards."
Of course, not all of Super Junior's last 15 years have been flashy and smooth. Super Junior has experienced more controversy than any other idol group. Starting with Chinese member Hankyung, Ki Bum, and Kang In leaving the team for various reasons, there were instances that were bound to hurt the team. And the members have been at the center of other controversies as well, such as dating and marriage issues. However, these events did not serve as stumbling blocks, but rather, it served as a foundation for Super Junior to stand upright as a new idol in this changing era and environment.
Super Junior has offered new ways for idol groups to continue their activities, making different choices and taking different paths from existing idols. As the group made a clear mark on K-pop and became an unprecedented K-pop artist, Super Junior is looking forward to the future beyond fifteen years.
Super Junior plans to release their new album, 'The Melody,' later today on the 15th-anniversary of their debut on November 6 at 6 PM. They also plan to hold an online fan meeting the next day. In December, Super Junior will release their 10th full-length album and make another mark in history.