Is There Any Advantage To A “Whole Group Enlistment”? This Boy Group’s Fandom Says Absolutely Yes

Five out of six members are currently enlisted, but the group isn’t quite “on hiatus,” it seems.

Back in November 2021, ONF‘s leader Hyojin announced in a handwritten letter to the fans that the group’s five Korean members had decided to enlist and complete their mandatory military service together.

ONF | @WM_ONOFF/Instagram

The following December, member MK enlisted on the 21st—while J-Us and Wyatt enlisted on the 27th, and Hyojin and E-Tion enlisted on the 28th. The sole Japanese member, U, has been pursuing solo activities while waiting for his teammates’ discharge in June 2023.

ONF’s “group enlistment” became the first of its case in the history of K-Pop. By cutting the group’s “military hiatus” down to a single 18-month one, the decision was well-received by not only ONF fans but also the general public—setting a positive precedent for other boy groups who, sooner or later, would face the same issue.

Leader Hyojin in a buzz cut | @WM_ONOFF/Twitter

And, following October 9 (KST), ONF fans are convinced there is another clear advantage to group enlistment: (Almost) whole group performances! Live in uniform!

ONF at the Gyeryong World Military Culture Expo | @ddochi_att/Twitter

The enlisted members of ONF went on stage to perform their own hits, like “Beautiful Beautiful” and “Summer End,” and more as a part of the event lineup for the Gyeryong World Military Culture Expo.

Putting together the stage as ONF (minus one), the members looked thrilled to be singing and dancing—all the while technically being on their military hiatus!

ONF fans are beyond excited for the opportunity to see the members up close again!

| @MKLOVE1116/Twitter

The military-version ONF will be performing all through October for the month-long expo! Meanwhile, K-Pop fans are raving at ONF’s ROKA-fied performance.

| theqoo

  • “Wow… When I heard about ONF’s group enlistment, I thought the members are super cool. Now that I see them work this hard even during enlistment, it’s honestly impressive. I bet the fans are head over heels right now.”
  • “Sending them off is difficult, but these opportunities are what helps the fans wait through it. I experienced the same for my bias. I think it’s not the worst idea for idol members to enlist as a group.”
  • “I feel like the fandom for my ult group will actually hate this idea… But personally, I envy all of this.”
  • “ONF is so good at singing live.”
  • “It’s seriously the greatest thing ever! I’m on my way back to Gyeryong today, too.”
Source: theqoo