iKON‘s Junhoe wore what seems to be a harmless yellow shirt on the photoshoot for a Japanese magazine, but once printed and released on the cover and in several pages, he became a laughingstock among some Chinese readers who found the shirt’s design to be a bit awkward — especially for a K-Pop idol to be wearing on a Japanese magazine.
Junhoe is spotted posing in his yellow shirt in multiple photos throughout the magazine’s coverage of iKON.
The shirt has a patch of some Chinese words in English pinned to the chest. These words, according to the Chinese readers, are actually from the “24 Characters of Core Socialist Values” as defined by the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China.
The shirt reads, “fu qiang (富强, prosperity), min zhu (民主, democracy), wen ming (文明, civility), he xie (和諧, harmony), zi you (自由, freedom), ping deng (平等, equality), gong zheng (公正, justice), fa zhi (法治, rule of law), ai guo (愛國, patriotism), jing ye (敬業, dedication), cheng xin (誠信, integrity), and you shan (友善, friendship)”.
These pictures of Junhoe unintentionally promoting the core values of socialism began trending and the internet reacted by poking fun at the boy group and its stylists.
“Look at that. It’s a Korean boy group member wearing a shirt that has Chinese socialist ideologies written on them for a Japanese magazine photoshoot!”
— Chinese Netizen
Meanwhile, Korean fans believe it’s a simple mistake. Some believe it could have been for “noise marketing”, as the boy group is expected to return to stage this August. None are convinced that Junhoe actually had the smallest clue of what his shirt says.
“What the hell is the stylist thinking?”
“Whatever. It’s the stylist’s fault. I doubt anyone on set knew what that was.”
“Well, Junhoe probably wore what the stylists gave him. I wonder which brand that shirt comes from. It looks like the stylists now have one more thing to think about when dressing the boys…”
“This is kind of like Hollywood stars wearing shirts that has “Korean BBQ” or “New Village Movement” written in Korean on them. It’s a simple mistake. If it happens again, we’ll know to blame the stylist.”
“It’s either a very well-played plan to become an issue in China or an epic failure of the stupidest group of magazine editors.”
- “The stylist must be a f*cking spy.”