For many K-pop acts, 2016 was a very busy year. Depending on said act, it was either very beneficial, such as EXO, BTS, and Twice, or debilitating, such as 4Minute, Beast, and 2NE1. However for some K-pop acts, 2016 marked a year of very little or no activity. So Nyeo Shi Dae (SNSD), better known as Girls’ Generation, comes to mind as the only work the most popular girl group in Hallyu history has done so far, if we do not include solo endeavors, was finishing up Girls’ Generation’s Phantasia and their nine-year anniversary song “Sailing.”
The same situation can be said for Super Junior (SUJU). Ever since the popular boy band established their own independent label back in 2015, nothing has been said or heard from them. It is possible the limit in activity has to do with all the conscription, or mandatory military services, boy band members are going through now, but that is no excuse for those who are not fulfilling or have fulfilled said service already. Unlike Girls’ Generation in which all the members are doing something for their solo careers, the same cannot be said for Super Junior. Some like Heechul and Yesung are pursuing solo music careers. Others like Leeteuk and Kangin have nothing reported on their respective solo careers if they have any at all.
Given how little we get on news, which includes social media updates, from Super Junior this year, many K-pop fans, especially those who are E.L.F. (official fan club for Super Junior), are often in the dark. However, we might be getting some insight that things might not be going well for Super Junior or at least for one member. Henry Lau of Super Junior-M expressed his struggles of his career. Not only that, but he made a plea to E.L.F. on the situation.
Just yesterday on Friday, December 30 (in which it would be Saturday, December 31 in South Korea), Henry Lau posted up a recent post on his official Instagram that seems to express his frustration with SM Entertainment, as reported by AllKpop. It has since been taken down, but many have already screen shot the post and shared it numerous times through social media.
In the caption, Henry Lau is writing on how it has become difficult to work at SM Entertainment while the first comment is the plea for help in which he asks E.L.F. to “speak to SM Entertainment on his behalf.” A translation for both are provided below for those unable to read Hangul.
Instagram Post Caption: “Difficult. Getting tired. I can’t do it alone anymore. Been a mistake since 9 years ago. It’s gotten so big..cannot support anymore. What do I do from here on?”
First Comment: “I… only have my fans left. If you see this message, please speak for me. My agency doesn’t listen to me.”
The post and comment is very simplistic and we are unsure what the exact context of Henry’s frustration with SM Entertainment is exactly, but we do know it must be something big if Henry Lau is willing to make it public on social media. K-pop fans and E.L.F. have shown a tremendous amount of support for Henry, as reported by Soompi. Even a hashtag, #JusticeForHenryLau, was made for Henry Lau and it is now trending worldwide.
Let’s hope SM Entertainment is able to help Henry Lau in his moment of plight. Let’s hope even more that SM Entertainment has learned their lesson in treating their talent right. Given their track record of handling their talent and their situation which includes JYJ, former Super Junior member Han Geng, former EXO members Kris Wu, Lu Han, and Tao, former TRAX member No Min Woo, and former Girls’ Generation member Jessica Jung, Henry Lau might “become another victim” if fans don’t put their foot down.
[Featured Image by SM Entertainment]