HOLLYWOOD—Hard to believe that they will serve. The world’s biggest boy band BTS is called to duty. Yes, they will abandon their army of fans to join another army, the South Korean military for national service, according to their agents. First, it was Elvis, now BTS. Elvis served in the United States Army from 1958 to 1960.
At the time of his enlistment, he was widely regarded as the most well-known name in the world of entertainment. Before entering the Army, Presley had caused national outrage with his rock and roll music. Many parents, religious leaders, and teachers’ groups welcomed his draft into the military. Despite being offered the chance to enlist in Special Services to entertain the troops and live in priority housing, Presley was persuaded by his manager to serve as a regular soldier. This earned him a tremendous amount of respect. If you watch the new “Elvis” movie, you will see it unfold in the film.
The circumstances are totally different, between Elvis and BTS, yet they are agreeing to serve, without exemption. The confirmation ends many years of debate, whether the stars might be exempted from military duties. It is mandatory that able-bodied men aged 18-28 must serve about two years. The seven members had been allowed to put off starting their military service until they turned 30. The oldest, Jin is currently 29. The youngest of the group is 24, but they plan on following through with their service.
South Korea has compulsory military service because it’s still technically at war with its nuclear-armed neighbor, North Korea. The band had a deferral back in 2020, since South Korea’s parliament passed a bill allowing the biggest K-pop stars to delay their duties until the age of 30. The boy band comprising members RM, Jin, Suga, j-hope, Jimin, V and Jung Kook-has proven its value as an economic powerhouse as well as a triumph of the entertainment industry.
The announcement by BTS comes just months after the band announced they would be taking a break, with some members pursuing individual projects. As we all know, BTS has been the world’s best-selling artist for the past two years-known for their catchy, upbeat hits like “Dynamite” and “Butter.” They’ve also been praised for their advocacy on mental health for young people. They are viewed by their fellow countrymen as national treasures-some lawmakers had suggested the band could be granted an exemption so they can keep performing.
Many exemptions have been given to Olympic medalists and other sports stars, classical musicians and dancers. According to published reports, the band’s managers on October 18, 2022, said the musicians were content to carry out their duties. The announcement also stated that the band would probably not get back together for at least a couple of years. They should reconvene around 2025 following their service commitment.
All seven members are multi-millionaires now, especially when their label Big Hit Entertainment went public, market value was estimated at $4.1 billion with shares priced at the top when the shares first came out. Big Hit boss Bang Si-hyuk, who owns 43 percent became a billionaire. Back in 2018, Hyundai Research Institute said BTS was contributing more than $3.6 billion to the south Korean economy every year-equivalent to the contribution of 26 midsize companies. They estimated $1.1 billion from consumer goods exports like merchandise and cosmetics in a single year.
Business is business, and leave it to Kanye West, now known as Ye to acquire the conservative social media platform Parler. The deal was also announced on October 17, saying West had made “a groundbreaking move into the free speech media space and will never have to fear being removed from social media again. The acquisition comes after West, who has legally changed his name to Ye, had his account temporarily locked by Twitter this month over an antisemitic tweet.
Terms of the Parler deal weren’t disclosed. Buying Parler could make West the latest celebrity owner of a social media platform after former President Donald Trump’s bid to win over conservatives with Truth Social and Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s proposed acquisition of Twitter.
Rose’s Scoop: Kanye West has been slapped with a lawsuit from George Floyd’s family, looks like they are suing him for $350 million for saying defamation comments on a recent episode of Drink Champs.