Netizens in China strike back against South Korean reaction to IZ*One cover shoot for Chinese magazine

Source: Global Times Published: 2020/11/24 22:39:57 Last Updated: 2020/11/24 19:39:57

IZ*One. Photo: VCG

IZ*One, a 12-member South Korean-Japanese female idol group, recently released their cover solo shots for China's emerging visual art and fashion magazine WAVES (Man Chao). However, the idols' looks for the shoot have been booed by fans in South Korea, who claiming that they made the girls look "local" and "frumpy." 

IZ*One's magazine photos, the group's first visual debut in a Chinese print magazine, take the theme "Catch the Moment." The cover shot is a photo collage that includes 12 same-sized individual snaps of all the group members. All the photos feature the 12 idols against a pale baby blue background wearing natural-looking make-up and clothing that is mostly white. However, they all show different hair colors as well as poses, with some touching their chins or winking. 

The seemingly safe looking and standard cover photo quickly got South Korean netizens commenting online, with many saying that the photo was very representative of a "Chinese flavor" and was not fashionable enough. 

It should be noted that while the South Korean-Japanese girl band was appearing in a Chinese magazine, a post from WAVES on China's Twitter-like Sina Weibo listing all the people who took part in the shoot shows that the styling, makeup and photography were carried out by South Korean professionals. 

The news about the cover shoot's "styling issue" also motivated Chinese netizens to share their opinions on Sina Weibo and Douban, a popular Chinese media review platform. Many expressed their support for the band, while others noted they found the reveal about who was behind the style amusing. 

"The point I focus on is whether they [Korean netizens] know that this so-called 'Chinese flavor' was created by South Korean stylists," one netizen commented on Sina Weibo. 

"It is hilarious to hear this, but I can feel the pain they will have when they learn about this. I am here for more reactions," said another. 

"I feel like the reason they say this is because they are biased against the beauty standards and taste that is popular in the Chinese entertainment industry," commented another.  

However, some Chinese fans agreed with South Korean netizens' opinion on the shoot. 

"I don't think it is a problem caused by the filter, I just can't understand the stylist's taste," one netizen posted on Douban. Also, "it is frumpy. I would believe it if somebody told me this photo was of hairstyle models like those you see in hair salons." 

IZ*One is an idol group that first debuted in 2018 with their EP Color*Iz. The band's name stands for the moment when the 12 girls are united. The "IZ" can be viewed as a stylized "12" representing the 12 members, while "ONE" refers to them uniting as one. The group collaborated with the WAVES magazine for its 11th issue. WAVES focuses on cutting-edge visual presentations and fashion. It was launched in Chinese mainland in January 2020, and starting from October, the magazine has expanded from focusing primarily on China to include working with South Korean and Japanese celebrities to create content. 

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