As part of a year-end survey for Korean media outlet News1, 22 major K-Pop agency representatives were asked to vote for the best rookie boy groups of 2020. Here’s how directors, CEOs, and managers from Big Hit Entertainment, SM Entertainment, JYP Entertainment, YG Entertainment and more ranked them.
4. P1Harmony & MCND
P1Harmony and MCND ranked joint 4th on the Best Male Rookies ranking with one vote each.
FNC Entertainment‘s P1Harmony debuted on October 28, 2020 with their first mini album, Disharmony: Stand Out. So far, it’s sold around 22,400 copies (Hanteo).
The group’s first title track, “Siren”, has racked up 11 million views on YouTube to date. The group also attracted attention for their innovating debut promotions, which included their own dystopian movie: P1H: A New World Begins.
TOP Media‘s MCND debuted on February 27, 2020 with their first mini album, Into the Ice Age. Before that, several members began gaining fans by participating in survival shows like The Fan and Under 19.
“Ice Age”, the EP’s smooth hip-hop title track, has accumulated 23 million views on YouTube to date.
Since then, MCND released a second mini album, Earth Age, on August 20, 2020. So far, the album has sold around 25,000 copies (Hanteo). The title track, “nanana”, has 12 million views on YouTube to date.
3. DRIPPIN & Lim Young Woong
DRIPPIN and Lim Young Woong ranked joint 3rd on the Best Male Rookies ranking with two votes each.
Woollim Entertainment‘s DRIPPIN debuted on October 28, 2020 with their first mini album, Boyager. So far, it’s sold around 44,200 copies (Hanteo), and reached #1 on the iTunes album charts in several countries.
The title track, “Nostalgia”, has a combined total of 10 million views on YouTube to date.
Soloist Lim Young Woong technically debuted in 2016 with his single “Hate You”, but he rose to mainstream fame this year after winning the Mr. Trot survival show.
His latest single, “Trust in Me”, was released on April 3, 2020 and has 1.1 million views on YouTube. It also earned him a Genie Music Award and Melon Music Award for Best Trot Song.
ENHYPEN ranked 2nd on the Best Male Rookies ranking with four votes.
BE:LIFT‘s ENHYPEN debuted on November 30, 2020 with their first mini album, Border: Day One. After the group built up a strong fanbase on survival show I-LAND, the album has already sold a staggering 307,400 copies (Hanteo).
The title track, “Given-Taken”, has 20 million views on YouTube to date, becoming the most-viewed 2020 boy group debut music video in 24 hours.
1. TREASURE & CRAVITY
And TREASURE and CRAVITY ranked joint 1st on the Best Male Rookies ranking with six votes each!
YG Entertainment‘s TREASURE debuted on August 7, 2020, with their first single album, The First Step: Chapter One. So far, it’s sold around 190,000 copies (Hanteo), becoming the first rookie boy group to receive the Hanteo Chart Initial Chodong certificate for selling over 100,000 copies in a week.
Since then, the title track (“Boy”) has surpassed 56 million views on YouTube.
On top of that, they released two more single albums this year: The First Step: Chapter Two (186,000 sales) and The First Step: Chapter Three (185,000 sales).
“I Love You” has 47 million views on YouTube, while “Mmm” has 26 million views.
Starship Entertainment‘s CRAVITY debuted on April 14, 2020 with their first mini album, Season 1. Hideout: Remember Who We Are. So far, it’s sold over 91,800 copies (Hanteo), and at the time, it broke the first week sales record for 2020 rookie boy groups.
The title track, “Break all the Rules”, has 13 million views on YouTube.
On August 24, 2020, CRAVITY released a second mini album: Season 2. Hideout: The New Day We Step Into, which has sold over 122,900 copies to date. Their latest single, “Flame”, has 14 million views on YouTube.