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Epic War Between K-Pop and J-Pop Fans Erupts Over Mnet Asian Music Awards Performance

Viewers could not help but compare K-pop and J-pop as the genres came head-to-head on one massive stage last week.

Performing for the Mnet Asian Music Awards (MAMA) in South Korea, J-pop girl group AKB48 collaborated with five female K-pop acts in what several netizens thought were awkward numbers.

As some pointed out, AKB48 simply had no match to its South Korean counterparts, both in style and talent.

In a joint performance of their song “Heavy Rotation” and “Koi Suru,” the girls of AKB48 showed up in cute dresses and consistent with their image.

They carried on with their cutesy choreography, a standard many fans have since adored for being easy to follow.

Meanwhile, K-pop artists Chung Ha, Weki Meki, Pristin, fromis_9 and Idol School Class 1 graced the stage with mature sexiness and a relatively more complicated choreography, which quickly won praises from the audience.

Apparently, these differences erupted discussions on social media. Japanese site My Game News Flash took note of some comments from South Koreans as translated via SoraNews24:

“South Korean idols are prettier and have better dance moves.”

“I finally understand why Korean groups are so popular overseas.”


“Our South Korean idols have to pick up the slack in the performance. It doesn’t seem like there’s any decent Japanese idols out there.”

“AKB48’s costumes made it look like they’re going to a kid’s party.”

“Those were AKB48 songs, yet why is the choreography better on the Koreans’ side? Those AKB48 members were hardly dancing at all!”

AKB48’s harshest critics, however, are Japanese themselves:

“There’s no comparison at all. AKB48’s level is just way too low.”

“We lost again. There’s no way we can beat big brother Korea.”

“All AKB48 is good for is handshaking events. Let’s not even talk about music and dance.”

“It’s common knowledge that AKB48 is garbage.”

“Some people just love to defend AKB48’s amateur choreography and terrible singing. It’s really disgusting.”

While that may be the case for those performances, AKB48 took redemption in the next collaboration stage called “Pick Me” — a K-pop song.

The J-pop powerhouse proved that they can keep up!

If anything, comparing both sides for the sake of comparing doesn’t seem helpful at all. Perhaps it’s much better if both genres see the good in the other and take inspiration while maintaining their own unique flair.

Check out the performances below and share us what you think in the comments!


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