Reality dating shows have been increasing in popularity as of late. If reality show fans are already missing the drama after Single’s Inferno 2‘s recent conclusion, they won’t have to wait long for a new dating program with a unique twist.
Abema TV recently announced a new reality dating program that will feature eight high school students who are training to debut in Korea as actors, talents, idols, dancers, or models. Six trainees are from Korea, and two are from Japan, including Ando Rinka, a former Girls Planet 999 contestant, and former Nizi Project contestant Hirai Momoka.
The eight trainees will share a home in Korea for one week, where they will be given a “last chance” at love before their debut.
A few of the show’s trainees also attend the popular Seoul Performing Arts High School, which has produced many popular K-Pop idols.
While reality dating shows have been popular lately, Romance Before Debut has already been met with mixed reactions.
There have been positive and forward-progressing changes within the K-Pop industry over the years, but Korean celebrity relationships or dating news are still often sore subjects. That is slowly beginning to change as a few celebrities take control of their narrative and go public with their relationships.
Of the public relationships that netizens have more positively received, the couple usually has an established and respectable career and has dedicated years to their craft and fanbase before their relationships, such as Girls’ Generation‘s Sooyoung and her boyfriend, actor Jung Kyung Ho and recent couple IU and actor Lee Jong Suk.
Netizens reacted to the news of the reality show with confusion, wondering what the purpose of the show was if it is unlikely the contestants would retain any romantic relationships they potentially form on the show after their debut.
Others wondered how the show would impact the contestant after they eventually made their official debut.
Some pointed out a positive note that the trainee would be getting publicity from the show, while others hoped the trainees weren’t just appearing on the show to increase their chance to debut.
Romance Before Debut will air its first episode on Abema TV on January 26. In the meantime, learn more about the eight contestants in the article below!