K-Pop and K-Dramas: ‘Imitation’ and ATEEZ

Promotional photo of (from left) Lee Suwoong, Jung Yunho, Choi San, and Park Seonghwa as the group Sparkling from ‘Imitation’. Copyright goes to Hidden Sequence and KBS.

Hi! It’s Annie!

I have expressed several times on this blog that I really love the group ATEEZ. Of course, BTS usually takes front and center on this blog. But you can bet that I am also regularly following ATEEZ’s social media. So, I’m really not sure how I only came to know about this in the past couple days even though this series begins to air only a couple weeks from now. We’ll have to see how long it takes to get to the US after that, but I’m too excited to wait. For those of you who are just as unaware as I was, several members of ATEEZ are featuring prominently in a new K-drama called ‘Imitation’ based off of a web toon. This web toon follows Maha, a girl who is part of a floundering K-pop girl group called Teaparty that only receives attention because Maha looks like another celebrity. Throughout the series she is caught up with the members of two K-pop boy groups; Shax and Sparkling. This means that we get to see members of ATEEZ act and I’m still really unsure how to comprehend this information. There’s still a lot that we won’t know until the series is released. Though we can gather some information from the original web toon, I’ve found that a lot of dramas based off of web toons or manga tend to deviate considerably from the source material. So, this will be what we know so far about what ATEEZ is doing in this drama.

Yunho:

The member of ATEEZ who nabbed the most prominent roll in the show is Yunho and I’m so excited to see him play one of the main characters. He plays Lee Yoo-Jin a long time friend of Maha and the lead vocalist of Sparkling who seeks to protect her from the more intimidating and snooty members of Shax. In other words, he is the second male lead in the show. So far they’ve released promotional images of him, posters featuring just him on them, and videos of him dancing as his character. We also know that Yunho was praised by the staff of this show for his kindness and determination, which just makes me happy. Of course, this isn’t unexpected as Yunho is essentially a large puppy dog. I can’t wait to see him take on a larger acting role, I just know he’ll do amazingly!

San:

San is playing Minsoo, one of the four members of the group Sparkling. His character is the maknae of the group and is known for being the mood maker. We really don’t know much about his character other than this and I can’t really say that this character features too prominently in the web toon. We know that we’ll definitely see a bit of him acting when they show the group Sparkling as a whole and we also know that there will be plenty of performance scenes with the members of this group. I’m going to be honest, seeing San’s individual photo as Minsoo on ATEEZ’s Twitter is what eventually led me to figuring out that this was coming out.

Seonghwa:

Seonghwa is playing Seyoung, the eldest and leader of Sparkling. We know that this character is kind and gives good advice, but we’ll have to watch to see what more we’ll get of this character. He’s kind of in the same boat as San where we don’t know how prominently he’ll feature yet; but he will be in scenes with the group Sparkling.

Sparkling:

So, as you’ve probably seen, this group consists of four people and three of them are being played by members of ATEEZ. Sparkling, as well as the other two prominent groups in this show (Teaparty and Shax), now have their own social media accounts. Some of the posts have consisted of behind the scenes footage of the cast doing photoshoots for their specific fictional K-pop groups. I recently watched the one for Sparkling where each person introduced themselves as their character and it was so adorable! These social media accounts are really succeeding in hyping me up for the show.

Jongho:

The fourth and final member of ATEEZ who we know will be in this series is Jongho, but he’s actually playing a member of Shax. The rival group to Sparkling. (But are we really surprised after that episode of ATEEZ Holdings?) I’m actually a little confused about the character he’s playing because his character, Hyuk, is very different in the source material. In order to get familiar with the feel of this I made sure to start reading the web toon, and while Hyuk is the all rounder maknae that Jongho can relate to, there are also several elements of his character that don’t particularly scream Jongho. For example, in the web toon Hyuk is known for being a pretty feminine looking guy and that ends up being a running joke for the first couple of chapters. Jongho is made of muscle. But I’m not sure that matters too much especially because, as I said, dramas never stick explicitly to web toons or manga. I mean, look at ‘Boys Over Flowers’. So I’m sure he’ll do well in this series even if his character description is a bit different.

A couple weeks ago I don’t think I would have predicted that I would be freaking out over ATEEZ in a K-drama. I know that there are quite a few people in the K-pop business who have dipped their toes into acting, but half of ATEEZ is in this show. I seriously can’t wait to see it. And this is coming after more slowly leaked news regarding the currently on hold BTS drama, which I’m already losing my mind over. While the members of BTS will not actually be acting in the drama, I’m still excited to see what they do with it. I’ll probably talk more about what we know about that in particular in my next post. I am already freaking out over everything Sparkling, because really how could you not? Obviously I already have a bias group in this drama. There are several plans to start “fan wars” between Sparkling and Shax fans on Twitter. I guess I’ll see you guys there! Just remember to play nicely because these aren’t actually real fan wars and we all should be nice to each other anyways. Hopefully I’ll actually be able to watch this sometime around May 7th when it gets released!

See you across the pond!

Sincerely, Annie

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