On August 29, the international idol survival show, The Debut: Dream Academy (also known as Dream Academy), introduced its 20 contestants. A joint venture by HYBE and GEFFEN Records, viewers were thrilled to meet the diverse line-up competing for a chance to debut in an international girl group.
The program is currently set to run for twelve weeks, with viewers able to vote for their favorite six contestants four times during the open voting period on Weverse and liking fan cams.
During the first elimination ceremony, two contestants were sent home: Adela from Slovakia and Hinari from Japan.
While many were initially excited over the global girl group premise, there have already been some issues with the show, according to fans. In an online forum post, a Reddit user shared that they were confused by the lack of views on the challenge videos.
Instead of the traditional formatting of a survival show — weekly episodes showing the contestants preparing for challenges — all that is shared are the challenge videos and fancams of each contestant.
Since the first challenge, the views and likes have dropped overall — the most liked fancam is Sophia’s at 21 thousand likes, and the most viewed challenge video is the Team A performance of “ANTIFRAGILE” at around 614 thousand.
This has made interest in the show wane for many who enjoy learning about the contestants’ personalities and seeing their work ethics as they rehearse.
The low views on the challenges and fancams have led some to believe that voting does not matter and that a selected line-up is already in mind.
During the final episode of the previous HYBE survival show, R U Next?, fans were shocked to learn that most group members would be decided by “label pick.” Some believe something similar could happen with Dream Academy.
Others have wondered if this “show” is just meant to serve as an “interactive trailer” for the documentary about the group that will be released next year.
The show’s approach definitely varies from previous projects, including JYP Entertainment‘s America To Korea. What do you think of Dream Academy?