This is my highly subjective countdown of the Top 10 male group debuts in K-pop. It only goes back a few years, since I was blissfully unaware of K-pop a few years ago. I say “blissfully” because what I didn’t know, couldn’t hurt me!
But now…the bliss is gone! K-pop male idols have ruined my life! And I wouldn’t have it any other way. 🙂
10. TEEN TOP – Clap (2010)
Angsty, brooding boys? Check. Semi-shirtless member? Check. Singable chorus? Check. Catchy dance point? Check yet again.
This debut had it all. And bonus points for introducing the members in such a clever way (I see you, swim-meet board!).
9. CNBLUE – I’m a Loner (2010)
THE kings of the debut win. This, their first Korean single, debuted on January 14, 2010. By January 29, they had their first music show win. And they’ve been winning awards ever since. Overachievers. 🙂
8. 2PM – 10 Out of 10 (2008)
This song was a party. Catchy, fun, and not at all thought-provoking. Just what I like in a party song. But the performances were always so much better than the song. Flips, back handsprings, spins, and butt shakes? Oh, and Nichkhun’s adorable face? What more do you need?!
7. GOT7 – Girls, Girls, Girls (2014)
I call them GOT2PM with the utmost affection. They just remind me so much of 2PM! And I LOVE 2PM!
Catchy song. Seven playful boys. Flirty dancing. Acrobatics. It’s all there! I guess JYP figured, why mess with a good thing?
6. BTOB – Insane (2012)
Angsty boys again. But this one gets extra bonus points for having CRYING, angsty boys. How can you not fall in love with beautiful boys who cry over evil girls?
And the song is brilliant. First time I heard it, it wormed its way into my brain and stayed for weeks. “You make me go insane. She gives me so much pain. I won’t be back again…”
5. BTS – No More Dream (2013)
This debut excited me beyond reason, since I’d followed their careers pre-debut. I can’t even explain how much I love these boys. The rapping is fantastic. Their voices are each so distinctive. And the dancing is phenomenal. This song and We Are Bulletproof, pt. 2 were just the one-two punch we needed from a rookie group last year.
4. EXO – Mama (2012)
Speaking of “excitement beyond reason,” I can’t with these boys. They are my Achilles heel. They are my double rainbow. They are my weakness and my happiness.
I can never objectively critique or question anything they do, because all logic escapes me when it comes to EXO. Let’s just say then that these debut music videos (both K and M) are the greatest music videos in the history of ever.
3. B.A.P – Warrior (2012)
Whew. Now that I’ve recovered from my EXO fever, I can logically say that B.A.P debuted with a bang with this song. Oh, hey! Bang! That wasn’t intentional, really. 🙂
Once you got over the all-blond thing, Mr. Bang and company let you know exactly what they were about. Hip-hop music, insane raps, masculine moves, and aggressive choreography. And I, for one, was immediately hooked.
2. INFINITE – Come Back Again (2010)
INFINITE’s debut was thisclose to being my number 1 on this list. They are undoubtedly my ultimate bias group. I will forever and always be an Inspirit. I may flirt with other groups, and even fall in love here and there, but I always come back to INFINITE.
This debut is still one of my all-time favorite songs, not just of INFINITE’s, but of all songs ever made. That’s saying a lot, since I’ve been around awhile. 🙂
1. SHINee – Replay (2008)
Of course I had to pick SHINee as my number 1. After all, they are the group that started my K-pop obsession. And Minho’s in the group. So there’s that. Sigh.
This debut single was the green light for older women to dream about K-pop idols. These boys called their noonas pretty, and we giggled and squealed like school girls.
Okay, so they MAY have been singing to someone barely out of high school, but let’s not sweat the details.
Do you agree with any of my picks? What would you add to your Top 10? Which debut was your favorite? Let me know below!