Park Bom – Queendom’s Lovable Sunbae

This article is a part of our series of articles about the participants of Mnet’s girl group competition show Queendom, which began airing on August 29 and will end on October 31.

It is safe to say that Park Bom is a K-pop veteran. She entered the K-pop scene as part of the YG family back in 2006 when she featured on her labelmates’ tracks. Then, in 2009, she officially debuted as a member of the legendary girl group 2NE1, alongside Dara, CL and Minzy. 

2NE1 were active for seven years and during their career they won countless awards and they are still one of the best selling girl groups of all time. Although they officially disbanded in 2016, their activity as a band almost completely ceased in 2014, following the discovery of Park Bom’s drug scandal.

Even though Bom was never charged with anything, her image, and subsequently her career, took a huge hit. Despite both YG and Bom herself explained that she had been prescribed the medication in question due to her diagnosis, a lot of people still considered her a “druggie” who tried to smuggle illegal substances into Korea. If you’re not familiar with that exactly transpired, Bom was sent pills containing amphetamine, which is illegal in Korea, from the US, where the drug is completely legal. 

Following 2NE1’s disbandment, Park Bom went on a hiatus from the entertainment industry. She officially came back on March 15 with the single album Spring. Her ex-bandmate Dara was featured on the track. Two month later, she re-released the album as an extended play under the name re:Blue Rose. One of her rivals on Queendom, Wheein from Mamamoo, was a featured artist on the title track “4:44”. 

Even though her comeback was generally well-accepted, not everyone was thrilled about her being back in the spotlight. It seems that her previous scandals still haven’t been forgotten. 

Her first appearance on Queendom also hasn’t gone without some drama. Before the first episode of Queendom was filmed, all the other contestants had been announced to one another, except for Park Bom. Some of the other girls raised the question of whether this was fair or not. 

But the adorable 35-year-old quickly won everyone’s hearts on the show by being extremely kind and down to earth. 

In a recent video published by Mnet, Park Bom expressed just how nervous she was about performing without her 2NE1 members. She continued: 

I miss the time when we were together. How nice it would be to go on stage as a group again.

Her first stage was very touching and goosebumps-inducing. She performed her 2009 song “You And I”. 

Even though she hid her nerves well and delivered an amazing performance, she still ended up in fifth place after the first battle. She admitted that her low ranking shocked her and that she thought that her ex-bandmates would be sad to see it. 

For the second battle Park Bom had to prepare her hoobae (G)I-DLE’s “HANN” while they chose 2NE1’s “Fire”. This episode of Queendom really showcased what a sweetheart she is. In the video below you can see her preparing snacks and a “Welcome” banner for the (G)I-DLE girls. 

She really tried to do everything to make them feel relaxed and welcome, and judging by the smiles on their faces and their continuous laughter, she succeeded. Such a caring sunbae!

Later on in that same episode we got to see her perform “HANN”, and nobody can deny that she did the song justice. She gave it a more upbeat sound and she even brought backup – the famous badass rapper Cheetah came to help her with Soyeon’s part of the song. 

However, to her disappointment, Bom finished in fifth place again in that round.

Even though some were concerned about how fair it was to have Park Bom alone compete against five groups right from the start, the first part of the third round raised everyone’s eyebrows. 

Park Bom had Eunji from Brave Girls represent her in the performance team, and Eunji was the only girl who didn’t get a solo stage before their group performance. She, and therefore Park Bom, ranked last. We are not saying she wouldn’t have ranked last if she got her solo stage, but not giving her one was beyond unfair. 

Despite her low rankings on the show, the songs she performed on Queendom got back on many Korean charts, and her cover of “HANN” debuted on Billboard World Digital Sales chart at no. 13. 

Less than two days ago, Park Bom announced that she will release her new song as part of the last round of Queendom on October 25

We hope that her participation on the show will help her rebuild her career even more. 

Do you think Park Bom will benefit from Queendom in the long run?

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