2NE1's triumph

2NE1's triumph

It was the heated battle of the top K-pop girl groups that fans were anxiously following.

The verdict is in.

In the past week, Girls' Generation and 2NE1 went head-to-head on popular music programme rankings, after both released albums late last month.

Many had expected nine-member Girls' Generation to emerge champions. They are, after all,the biggest and most successful girl group in the competitive K-pop scene.

But they suffered a shock defeat as their song Mr.Mr. lost the highly coveted top spot to arch-rivals 2NE1's Come Back Home on two popular Korean music shows, Inkigayo and M! Countdown.

2NE1 leader CL, 23, could not hide her surprise and joy when the results were announced on Inkigayo on March 16. Her jaw dropped and she looked at her three bandmembers in disbelief.

Vocalist Park Bom, 29, cried uncontrollably.

While some members of Girls' Generation smiled and clapped for 2NE1's win, others such as member Sunny were visibly disappointed and unhappy and her reaction sparked a heated online war between fans of both groups.

2NE1's fans called her out for being rude, but Girls' Generation fans defended her, saying she was simply tired and spacing out.

History repeated itself a few days later during the March 20 telecast of M! Countdown.

Girls' Generation was not even second on the music show ranking. They had to settle for third place and watch 2NE1 reign supreme again.

RESULTS

The results on these weekly music programmes are usually tabulated by combining album sales, fan votes and the artists' popularity on social media such as Twitter and YouTube.

Securing pole position on these shows is a big deal for K-pop artists because it reflects how well their song is doing on the charts.

Last year, Girls' Generation came in first on these K-pop music programmes three weeks in a row, with their hit single I Got A Boy.

It was a remarkable feat, which makes their dethronement this year even more unexpected and a harder pill to swallow for their many fans, who are not just disappointed but also bewildered.

Local fan Kenneth Tan, 19, a student, told The New Paper: "Girls' Generation have always done well in music programmes because they have a huge fanbase. I guess they're over their prime.

"But I wish there was no such head-to-head battle, so that each girl group can win and no one ends up getting hurt.

"I am quite sad. I hope Girls' Generation will not be discouraged because we will always support them."

2NE1 fans felt it was a deserved win for their idols.

Administrative assistant Joanne Lim, 26, said: "2NE1's song was much better and their live performance on stage was powerful and impressive."

Student Christine Teo, 20, added: "I have nothing against Girls' Generation, but I think their song wasn't catchy or good. Even though 2NE1 debuted two years later than Girls' Generation, they stand out with their unique musical style and fierce image."

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