When the Produce 101 Season 2 group Wanna One disbanded December 31, 2018, the members and their supporters became completely broken hearted. Over the short period of promoting, the group gained immense popularity despite being a contract team bound to end – and when the contract did end without extension, fans were left devastated they might not be able to see the members again.
Since then, the former Wanna One members have all worked hard toward making their return to the industry and their loving fans. The first to come back was Yoon Jisung, as a solo artist. He released his solo album in February of 2019, before enlisting in the army to serve his military duty in May 2019. His most recent sighting is at a recording studio, where he participated in making of a new military song with fellow enlisted K-Pop artists.
Ha Sungwoon released his mini-album in February of 2018 as well. Since then, he has been actively performing and promoting himself as a solo vocalist. He also successfully completed several fan meeting events around the world. From HOTSHOT to Wanna One and finally as a solo artist, Ha Sungwoon continues to showcase his vocal talent on stage. Here’s his latest bop:
By March of 2019, Lai Kuanlin re-debuted as a duo unit with his agency-mate, PENTAGON‘s Wooseok. Fans were especially excited to see these two collaborate, as Wooseok has been mentioned as Lai Kuanlin’s role model since Produce 101 Season 2. Their chemistry was unbelievable and fans have long been anticipating this duo’s return – but in light of the recent contract issues between Lai Kuanlin and CUBE Entertainment, such possibility seems unreachable at the moment.
Park Jihoon, who was absolutely adored by the viewers for being the “Wink Boy” during his Produce 101 Season 2 days, also made it back to the K-Pop world in March 2019. He came back as a solo artist, with a huge fandom already built for himself. Park Jihoon has been actively promoting since then – with his latest being selected as the ambassador for the South Korean Ministry of Environment. With that said, Park Jihoon is definitely an eco-friendly fairy from the land of K-Pop, with an entire garden dedicated to him at the Seoul Forest Park.
Hwang Minhyun went back to being a part of his original group, NU’EST, and returned as a part of the team in April 2019. Reunited again as OT5, NU’EST really took off with their latest album. They have been nominated and won the “Male Group of the Year” award at the 2019 BRAND OF THE YEAR Awards. Now as NU’EST’s Minhyun, he continues to wow his fans with his unchanging visual and charisma on stage.
By May 2019, Kim Jaehwan made way back into the K-Pop world with his solo album. Fans were thrilled to be able to hear Kim Jaehwan’s unique voice again. With a soothing voice that fits all genres well, Kim Jaehwan also featured on a soundtrack album for the K-Drama Chief of Staff. Recording a drama soundtrack has always been Kim Jaehwan’s goal, so he’s making dreams come true with his voice alone!
Also in May 2019, members Lee Daehwi and Park Woojin re-debuted as AB6IX, a boy group managed by Brand New Music. Though these two come with Wanna One experiences, Lee Daehwi and Park Woojin are “rookies” as a part of AB6IX. The two, along with the rest of AB6IX, are very eagerly promoting themselves. The group completely enchanted the audience at KCON NY 2019 and will be doing the same again at KCON LA 2019 in August.
Ong Seong Wu kept himself busy after Wanna One’s disbandment. Since January 2019, Ong Seong Wu and his agency have been steadily paving the path for his return to the industry as both a vocalist and an actor. In June 2019, Ong Seong Wu released a whole bop called “Heart Sign”. But his more anticipated return as the character Choi Jun Woo in the K-Drama At Eighteen happened in July 2019. Ong Seong Wu received outstanding reviews from producers and viewers alike, for his breathtaking visual and above-average acting skills for a rookie actor.
Another Wanna-One-veteran-gone-back-rookie is Bae Jinyoung. On July 23, 2019, Bae Jinyoung re-debuted with CIX, as the group’s “Center Member”. With most members relatively well known from YG Entertainment‘s Mix Nine and Treasure Box, CIX is anticipated to become super rookies in the K-Pop scene. Here’s their not-so-newbie-vibe debut track music video:
Finally, the former “Visual Center” Kang Daniel won his legal battles against his former agency LM Entertainment and made his grand return to the stage on July 25, 2019. He was the last of the 11 former Wanna One members to come back to the K-Pop world. Kang Daniel is now sweeping the music charts with his fresh new sound and claiming his way back up to the top as one of the hottest K-Pop idols to grace the industry.
With Kang Daniel’s return, viewers are now calling Produce 101 Season 2 have been the most successful of the series – to have “given life” to these 11 individually successful stars!