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Commentary: Sexy Almost-Lesbians

This post is rated 15+. Proceed at your own risk.
All comments are the author's own view and do not reflect KWS as a whole.

Brown Eyed Girls' 'Abracadabra'
There's been a recent Kpop gimmick going around: girl on girl action. In a country that is far from sexually open, it's a bit surprising how often there are lesbian scenes in music videos or girl vs. girl almost-kisses in photoshoots. Of course, it's not just in Korea; even in Western countries, girl on girl action is stereotypically considered hot and steamy. I mean, how many spring break movies have girls getting drunk and making out with each other? This, in a way, causes fetishization of lesbians, and, indeed, homosexuality as a whole.

More often than not, girls in these situations act sexually obscure in order to portray a femme fatale or independent women image. I find this a bit offensive; these women only gain the upper-hand in a power dynamic with other women. It's particularly ironic in "Female President" by Girls' Day. The lyrics in the song promote a take-charge attitude for girls:
Girls' Day's 'Female President'

We have a female president
Why so serious? What’s the problem?
If a girl kisses first, she gets arrested or what?

Come up to him and kiss him first
Now is the time, you can start first
(via kpoplyrics.net)
With such a message, it would seem obvious to have one of the girls taking charge with their boyfriend, right? Instead, the video shows the girls taking charge with each other. I understand enticing a certain viewership with kinky or otherwise sexual images, but in a song about strong women, shouldn't it focus on that strength? Or at least the kind of womanly strength promoted in the song lyrics?


RaNia in Maxim
In other cases, groups known for being scandalous and sexy push boundaries little bit further. Take this picture of RaNia from Maxim. Rania, as we've talked about before, is a group known for one thing from their debut: their bodies and provocative dancing. It may or may not be the idols' choices to wear what they wear or pose in such an obviously provocative way, but it's certainly not discouraged by their companies. In an effort to always be cutting edge, Kpop companies may be taking sexualization (of both sexes) a bit too far.


Nine Muses' 'Wild'
Like hot pants, this sexualization of idols may sell, but it hasn't become trendy in mainstream Korea. In other words, idols are the exceptions. And that's why the Ministry of Gender Equality & Family has banned music videos with homosexual undertones (or overtones, for that matter). For example, this year, Nine Muses' "Wild" was deemed 19+ for provocativeness.

I can't really fight these images without knowing if the girls themselves wanted to be portrayed in such a way. And I'm not sure they are 100% bad. Sex sells. We all know what the oldest profession is, and these images of girl on girl action don't seem deeming on the surface. Perhaps I have it wrong, and they do not harm female independence at all. I mean, wasn't the kiss scene in 'Abracadabra' Ga-In's idea? She was trying to serve Korea a shocking reality check; testing the social norms as it were. And that is what being an artist is about. So I guess pushing sexual boundaries is inevitable in any artistic media.

What are your thoughts on girl on girl action in Kpop? Is it attractive? Out of place in Korea? Good for social commentary? Want me to talk about guy on guy action? Please leave a comment below.


--Lauren

P.S. I'm quaking in anticipation for the day when someone actually kisses instead of just looking like they are on the brink of it. What a riot that will be.

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