ARMY Slams Hollywood Reporter’s BTS Feature, Defends RM

Fans are accusing this article of defamation, and more.

Fans are expressing their outrage, following the release of a highly anticipated article that left many in shock.


On October 2, The Hollywood Reporter magazine released their latest issue. BTS are featured on its cover, as well as within its pages.


The article, written by Seth Abramovitch, contains highlights from BTS’s history, tidbits about the K-Pop industry, and information from his interview with BTS and Big Hit Entertainment founder, Bang Si Hyuk, at Dotgogi restaurant in Seoul.


At the beginning of the article, Seth Abramovitch admits to being “a little fuzzy” on BTS history. He brushed up on his knowledge by reading BTS books during his 13-hour flight.

Forty-eight hours earlier, I’m on an Asiana Airlines flight from Los Angeles to Seoul, the only 47-year-old man on the plane with a pile of BTS books on his lap. While I was well aware of their status as a once-in-a-generation pop culture phenomenon […] I admit to being a little fuzzy on some of the finer points of BTS history…

— Seth Abramovitch


Fans are accusing The Hollywood Reporter of spreading misinformation about BTS and the K-Pop industry, as well as defamation. The article describes K-Pop as “part Motown, part Hunger Games“, and generalizes its trainee programs as militant “training camps”.

Thousands of wannabe K-pop stars compete at regular American Idol-style cattle calls. Those lucky enough to make it to the next level spend years learning their craft inside secretive K-pop training camps, where they’re sometimes subjected to dangerous diets, strict social rules (no dating), grueling rehearsal schedules and mandated plastic surgery and skin-whitening procedures.

— The Hollywoord Reporter


Moreover, the article is angering not just ARMY, but fans from many K-Pop fandoms, by using the tragic passing of SHINee‘s Jonghyun as an example of just how grueling the industry can be.

Only the best of the best wind up in an actual K-pop band — while some don’t survive at all. In 2017, the industry drew intense scrutiny after a member of SHINee, another popular K-pop band, took his own life, writing in his suicide note that he felt “broken on the inside.”

— The Hollywood Reporter


In this context, readers found Jonghyun’s mention to be in poor taste, to say the least.


The Hollywood Reporter is also receiving heat for this quote from RM.

We have to consider ourselves not just better [than other K-pop acts], but the best,” says RM, BTS’ 25-year-old charismatic leader. “When we’re out there on that stage, we’re there to conquer. We think we’re the ones.

— RM (The Hollywood Reporter)


ARMYs claim that RM was misquoted and portrayed in a way that makes him appear arrogant, which is contrary to his character.


Big Hit Entertainment has also received criticism from fans for allowing the article to go to press. ARMYs are now urging their fandom to email their concerns and complaints to the company, in the hopes that changes will be made.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter