When I got into the boy group Just Be Joyful (JBJ for short) I knew that it wasn’t going to end on a super happy note. The six-member group came from Produce 101 as a team of fan favorites that were granted seven months to perform together. Their contract was set to end in April, with a chance of continuing depending on how much success they had. During their promotions, JBJ showed that they were a great group.They took first place for ‘My Flower’ on Music Bank back in January. Fans have always shown the group a lot of love and support. JBJ was even negotiating extending their contract until everything came to a screeching halt.
Why? Let me tell you what I think. Kwon Hyunbin of the group recently signed with YG Entertainment to take over his contract as a musician (he previously had an ongoing modeling contract with YG as well). After signing with YG, they announced that Hyunbin would no longer be participating in activities with JBJ. All of this despite the fact that the group had only a month and a half left on their contract. So my question is why would YG want to pull him from the group? The answer is probably simple. It could all come down to money if you ask me.
Instead of waiting for the contract to finish, YG has a chance to use Hyunbin in other projects where they have control over content and profits. We know what YG tends to do with their artists. They don’t call it the ‘Dungeon’ for nothing. So here I am, a bitter Joyful (JBJ’s fandom name) gritting my teeth and hoping that the members of JBJ get to move on to bigger, better things. I have a LOT of feelings about this. JBJ had a real chance to keep going. Pulling one member seemed to halt their momentum. Part of me wonders how Hyunbin feels in the middle of this. Did he expect this when he expanded his contract with YG?
The other members of the group still have chances. Taehyun is still a HOTSHOT member. Maybe with the success JBJ brought to him he can use his experiences and fan following to help his group reach higher levels. Sanggyun is also still a member of Topp Dogg. Could the return of Sanggyun to the group (where he is known as A-tom) make them come back stronger? The rest of the JBJ members are also talented and deserve a chance to keep doing what they love. I hope their fans will follow them as they move on to whatever projects come next. Either way, this mess seems like it could have been avoided if YG would have allowed Hyunbin to finish out his work with JBJ.
JBJ is scheduled to have their final release and their last concert in the middle of April. Fans are silently protesting outside of the Leon Entertainment building in the hopes of getting JBJ’s contract renewed despite all of the recent chaos surrounding the group. Things are not just blowing over quietly this time around, and I’m so curious to see what will happen in the end. What a headache.
If you are a Joyful like me, I’m sure you’ve been doing your fair share of screaming and ranting about what has happened. We knew it was coming, after all, but we didn’t expect it to be like this. Let’s continue to support the members of JBJ and cheer them on as they make their next moves. And remember, Just Be Joyful!