Fri. Apr 19th, 2024

Infectiously healthful and initially pitched because the more healthy various to the upcoming Squid Sport: The Problem, it appeared that Netflix’s Bodily: 100 was a actuality TV unicorn. Within the weeks following its rise to worldwide success, turning contestants like Jang Eun-sil, Choo Sung-hoon, and Yung Sung-bin into Web royalty, the blemishes on an in any other case excellent facade have begun to point out. The next controversies vary from allegations of manipulated outcomes to precise crime.

Accidents

Picture through Netflix 

One of many first contestants to talk publicly concerning the present was actress and former idol trainee Elaine Wong, whose feedback generated headlines and YouTube thumbnails portray a disastrous image. “Behind the scenes,” she instructed AsiaOne in early February, simply two weeks after the premiere, “there’s an ambulance each 20 to half-hour, choosing up [contestants] and going off.” The entire of the interview is definitely lighthearted in tone, and she or he doesn’t remorse the expertise nor her eventual loss to pink-haired Shim Eu-ddeum within the Demise Match problem. No less than two of the accidents sustained in that problem had been depicted on the present, together with an elbow to the face and fractured ribs.

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What wasn’t proven was the lasting harm from the very first problem, the Pre-Quest, the place all 100 contestants hung onto metallic bars. UDT teacher Kim Kyeong-baek received the primary spherical, however his arms had been paralyzed for 2 months. With any form of bodily problem, one would hope that the manufacturing staff is taking the right security precautions. In 2014, circumstances within the Korean movie trade had been so unhealthy as to be worthy of worldwide scrutiny. That was, nevertheless, lengthy earlier than the huge inflow of funding from Netflix, which can have introduced the wanted reform. Then once more, Squid Sport: The Problem.

Unnamed Contestants Accused of Assault

Picture through Netflix 

On February 23, the Seoul Gangnam Police Station obtained a report that one of many contestants — as but unnamed — assaulted his girlfriend, they usually subsequently booked him for questioning. A special contestant is going through fees for making threats in opposition to his girlfriend, with stories alleging bodily abuse.

A proportion of any group of 100 will develop into, let’s say, questionable characters, however the recognition of Bodily: 100 owes largely to the overall air of camaraderie among the many contestants. A far cry from American actuality TV, these gymnasium rats and meatheads had been at all times bowing to at least one one other and cheering one another on. Whereas these particular person incidents can’t probably replicate on all 100, it’s at all times disappointing when the folks we root for on tv aren’t who we thought they had been.

Kim Da-young Bullying Scandal

One of many standouts of Bodily: 100 was teeny-tiny stuntwoman Kim Da-young, whose head for security was instrumental to her staff’s win on the Shifting Sand problem. After being accused of bullying her classmates in center college, she posted an apology on February 24, admitting to verbal abuse however denying the extra claims of bodily violence. Now, this can be surprising to American viewers, who’ve by no means heard of a star being canceled for “bullying” or any wrongdoing dedicated as a toddler (hi there, Mark Wahlberg), however it is a widespread incidence within the hallyu world, even described by NBC Information in 2021 as a “#MeToo-style reckoning.” Identify a Ok-drama or Ok-pop group, and chances are high there’s somebody who’s been caught up in this sort of scandal. Within the case of the actor Kim Ji Soo, the accusations had been sufficient that he was dropped by his expertise company and changed within the present River The place the Moon Rises. However, the allegation in opposition to Apink’s Chorong prompted a defamation lawsuit.

2023 is a hell of a time to be accused of bullying, given one other Korean present’s recognition on Netflix, The Glory, which can recommend why there’s a distinction between American and Korean perceptions of faculty bullying. The Ok-drama’s brutal violence relies on a real-world incident, as described by The Korea Instances: “In Might 2006, a gaggle of freshmen at a center college in Cheong-ju, North Chungcheong Province, abused a fellow scholar utilizing a hair iron and clothes pins. Asking the sufferer to ‘test whether or not the iron is scorching sufficient,’ the abusers burned the flesh of the sufferer who was later hospitalized in consequence.”

It’s tempting and even cheap to characterize the issue of faculty violence as a microcosm of larger Korean society, which is like Bert Cooper’s tremendous watch wound tight, at all times ticking. “Sounds extra like a bomb!” South Korea has the best suicide price amongst developed nations, and for younger folks, it’s the stress of competitors at school and the workforce. As international trainer Ciaran Maguire noticed within the nation, “It’s a concern of an unstable life that strives my college students to get up at 6 a.m., examine all day and clock off at midnight, daily.” A shortcut to get forward, to seem robust, could also be to show that others are weak. For a lot too many, it could appear, there’s a proverbial money prize at all times at stake. What of the actual ones, then?

Rigged Finale Allegation

That is an accusation as outdated as actuality TV itself, probably circumvented in every case if not for the time period “actuality.” The ultimate two contestants of Bodily: 100, Jung Hae-min and Woo Jin-young, competed in an occasion the place every participant needed to pull rope out of a seemingly infinite spool. As made worldwide by TikTok consumer @krealitylover on February 26, an unbiased South Korean paper, Ilyo Shinmun, reported that this problem was filmed 3 times. In line with the consumer, “For the primary time they filmed, Jung Hae-min … was in an enormous lead. However Woo Jin-young raised his palms and mentioned that there was a difficulty along with his machine.” After the manufacturing workers indicators off on the gear, the match resumes with Hae-min as soon as extra taking the lead. Filming halts once more, this time for ‘an audio concern.’”

Regardless of the damage-control statements made by distributors Netflix and MBC, the rumor grew to become a conflagration: Bodily: 100’s winner, Woo Jin-young, stopped the competitors when it was clear he was about to lose. On February 28, Hae-min himself testified to the 2 stoppages. Jin-young made a public assertion afterward March 4, denying that he requested a stoppage within the first place. “It’s not true that I raised my hand and stopped the match.”

A press convention that includes Jin-young was canceled (for this and the opposite controversies), and even fellow contestant Ma Solar-ho was attacked on-line for having uploaded a YouTube video that includes Jin-young. Unlucky in itself, it’s additionally an eerie recreation of an incident that occurred on the 1988 Olympics, the place the Korean boxer who received a gold medal was heckled on the podium, criticized within the media, and publicly insulted — by Koreans. Park Si-hun’s fellow countrymen didn’t imagine he deserved the medal, they usually let him know. Within the ensuing years, the athlete battled melancholy and suicidal ideas, and by no means boxed once more. Some issues, it could seem, haven’t modified. We simply have the Web now.

There’s a negligible distinction between the winner of Bodily: 100 and each different contestant, particularly the runner-up. Whether or not meant or not, probably the most profound takeaway from the present is that there is no such thing as a one true measure of power. No matter glory afforded to the person winner is just icing on the cake of getting carried out nicely, which a majority of the contestants had achieved. Woo Jin-young carried out nicely, as did Hae-min. If hypothetically set in opposition to one another within the rope problem once more, it’s understood that both is the seemingly victor. The controversy solely reinforces this, mockingly compounding the present’s themes whereas apparently satisfying nobody.

Kim Chun-ri vs. Park Hyung-geun

Picture through Netflix

Unobscured by any difficult modifying, probably the most uncomfortable second in Bodily: 100 was the Demise Match between Kim Chun-ri and Park Hyung-guen. At first look, the result appeared apparent: the cumbersome feminine bodybuilder Chun-ri may carry Hyung-geun into the air and spin him round like a chef making pizza. And he or she tries it, however MMA fighter Hyung-geun, who didn’t look like taking the match significantly, countered her strikes and maneuvered her to the bottom earlier than kneeling on her chest. Chun-ri’s voice-over narration conveyed her shock. She couldn’t transfer. In the meantime, the contestants watching the match registered their discontent with the tactic, prompting Hyung-geun to do a “zip your lips” gesture, which Jang Eun-sil described as “chilling.”

The Web didn’t approve, both, and Park Hyung-geun grew to become a straightforward goal for hate. Nevertheless, he went on to be an necessary a part of Eun-sil’s underdog staff, and one by no means is aware of what’s occurring behind the scenes. On February 18, Hyung-geun uploaded a brief skit to his Instagram account, recreating the scene with a cute reversal. He’s taking part in the position of the upset viewers, whereas three of the feminine contestants — Eun-sil included — throw the “zip your lips” transfer again at him.

Chun-ri instantly defended Hyung-geun in an Instagram submit, saying, “I do know that a whole lot of viewers might have felt discomfort from the mere reality of seeing his knee on my chest, however I didn’t enter this contest as a ‘lady,’ however as a competitor, so I’ve no regrets concerning the loss.” Writing for CNN, author Jeff Yang additionally notes that, “As if to show out [Chun-ri’s] level, petite Kim Da-young subsequently used velocity and agility to defeat a lot bigger male jiujitsu fighter Chae Wan-ki on the identical sport — deftly demonstrating that ladies may, certainly, win out in opposition to male opponents with the precise expertise and mindset.”

Ascendio Lawsuit

For one scandal that mercifully excludes our favorites from the present, certainly one of Bodily: 100’s manufacturing firms, Luyworks Media, is in authorized bother with leisure firm Ascendio, which filed a lawsuit over accreditation. Actually, eagle-eyed viewers might have seen that Ascendio wasn’t included within the credit in any respect, if such a factor will be seen, and Luyworks had characterised the present’s manufacturing as having proceeded with out Ascendio’s involvement in any way.

In an area press launch, a consultant for Ascendio mentioned, “In February final yr, we signed a planning and growth funding contract with Luyworks and paid the prices for manufacturing. Since then, we’ve not obtained any return on the funding, and the contract remains to be in full impact.” For its half, Luyworks maintains that the contract is just not in full impact, and Ascendio had been correctly notified of its cancelation. If Bodily: 100 certainly required three manufacturing firms (together with MBC), a scale-down to 2 may make future occasions even smaller in scale than “shuttle run.”

What’s ‘Bodily: 100’ Now?

Whereas something is feasible, it could be stunning if any of those controversies impacted the way forward for Bodily: 100, past classes about sport variables and background screening for contestants. And it could undoubtedly be a disgrace. The present is a salve for a notoriously aggressive tradition — a contest with a number of methods to “win” — which disrupted the battle of the sexes and showcased a wide range of physique sizes and shapes. Finally, Bodily: 100 proved to be a troubled reflection of a troubled society — in a world bereft of untroubled societies, thoughts — and whereas it was good to imagine it was anomalous, it’s all of the extra necessary for being inextricable.

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