Back in 2014, Bom — a K-pop idol member of popular girl group 2NE1 — found herself thrust in the media overhead light when the Korean Broadcasting System (KBS) broke the story that Bom attempted to smuggle drugs into South Korea from the United States. However, the drugs were only considered smuggled in because South Korea has a ban on amphetamines. In Bom’s case, she was prescribed amphetamines legally as medication.
Eventually, YG Entertainment CEO Yang Hyun Suk would open up to the media, providing a statement on the matter. Hyun Suk stook by Bom’s side, trying to explain the situation as best he could so others could understand.
“As fans may already know, 2NE1’s Park Bom grew up in the United States before her debut and had dreams of becoming a soccer player. During one soccer match, she witnessed the death of a teammate on the field, after which she fell in a slump, with the extreme trauma and the depression that followed. For several years afterward, she received counseling and treatment, taking medication prescribed to her by a university hospital in the States.”
Despite YG Entertainment and Yang Hyun Suk’s efforts, most of South Korea still condemned Bom, throwing stones at her for a situation they did not fully understand. Ergo, Bom went into “reflection,” a hiatus from her career activities just so the tension could die down. Apparently, one year was not enough, as Korean netizens still criticized Bom when she appeared at 2NE1’s surprise performance at the 2015 Mnet Asian Music Awards (MAMA 2015).
Now, almost two years into her “reflection,” it becomes even more dire that Bom will return to 2NE1 as her contract is up for expiration this year, and so far she hasn’t renewed it. Nevertheless, Bom’s fellow group members of 2NE1 and Blackjacks, the devoted fan base for the popular K-pop group, are hoping for the best, sending her well-wishes on her 32nd birthday.
To start, both CL and Dara have sent birthday wishes to Bom on their respective Instagram accounts. In CL’s post, she sent a video smooch to Bom, who looks like she is accompanied by Dara. As for Dara, she provided a cake in the shape of the moomin hippo plush. This is actually a throwback to the days Bom was a cast member on the K-variety show Roommates. In one of the episodes, Bom absolutely admired the plush when she first saw it. It is unknown why Minzy did not send any birthday wishes on her official Instagram account. It is quite possible she may have forgotten, but it is also quite possible her well-wishes were personally made for Bom and not for the public eye.
As for Blackjacks, they too sent a multitude of well-wishes to Bom, specifically to her Instagram account despite its inactivity for two years, as reported by KpopStarz. Along with the well-wishes, many Blackjacks also asked Bom to come back to them, rejoining 2NE1 to create something new.
To be frank, it is very hard to believe that Bom will remain on “reflection” for the rest of her career until her contract expires. For starters, Bom did not just want to be a K-pop idol, but one specifically for YG Entertainment. That is why she kept coming back to audition for the same talent agency for three years. It was in her third year that she finally came in at first place and she became a trainee under YG Entertainment. Prior to the founding of 2NE1, Bom appeared as an extra in BIGBANG’s early music videos.
Ultimately, all Blackjacks can do is wait for Bom to return. Until then, they are going to support her, giving love and well-wishes. The fact they still do so almost two years after Bom went into “reflection” is a testament to their devotion, especially on her 32nd birthday.
[Photo by Ken Ishii/Getty Images]