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The Meanings Behind The Second Generation K-Pop Fandoms, Explained

Did you start your K-pop journey during this era?
LIST: Second-Generation K-Pop Fandom Names And The Meanings Behind Them
PHOTO: (LEFT TO RIGHT) INSTAGRAM/chaelincl, INSTAGRAM/real_2pmstagram

Do you remember when you became a K-pop fan and which group you first loved? How about the feeling of making new friends, discovering new music, and attending K-pop events in your area at a time when K-pop was just starting to become popular in the Philippines?

For those who became interested in K-pop between 2003 to 2011, let's take a trip down memory lane as we revisit some of the iconic second-generation K-pop idols and their fandoms. For new K-pop stans, who knows? This might be your chance to discover older songs and artists who contributed greatly to the Hallyu wave. You might end up joining a new fandom by the end of this list!

Second generation K-pop groups and their fandoms

  1. 2PM - Hottest

    Debuting in 2008 as a hip hop group under JYP Entertainment, 2PM showcased their acrobatic dance styles with their debut song "10 Out Of 10." They achieved success both in South Korea and Japan, releasing albums and holding concerts in both countries. Their latest Korean release was their seventh studio album, "Must."

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    2PM's fandom is known as Hottest. The reason behind it is simple: JYP Entertainment considers 2:00 PM to be the hottest time of the day. 2PM's fandom color is Metallic Grey.

    The group's 2015 song, "My House," recently became viral in South Korea with other idols doing performance covers of the song. Watch MV here:

    A2PM “My House” M/V

  2. Super Junior - ELF

    Who hasn’t heard of "Sorry, Sorry"? Even non-K-pop fans can't deny that this song gave them the LSS as it was played on the radio everywhere during its peak. Super Junior became famous globally and they went on to release award-winning albums and go on world tours. Their discography varies in genre from pop to contemporary R&B and even Latin pop. Over the years, the Super Junior members formed subgroups, branched out to acting, hosting, and other activities.


    The group's fandom name is ELF, short for Everlasting Friends. Super Junior's leader, Leeteuk, named their fandom ELF because the sapphire blue (Super Junior's official fandom color) oceans during concerts were beautiful and it gives the members' happiness.

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    Super Junior recently released a special single album, The Road: Winter For Spring on February 28, 2022. Watch the title track, "Callin,'" MV here:

  3. miss A - Say A

    miss A is a girl group quartet consisting of Korean and Chinese members. They were the first act to reach number one on the Gaon Digital Chart with their debut song, "Bad Girl Good Girl." The group went on to release more K-pop hits like "Goodbye Baby" and "Only You." After the promotions of their last album, Colors, miss A went on an indefinite hiatus with the members focusing on individual activities. Eventually, JYP Entertainment announced the official disbandment of the group in 2017.

    miss A's fandom name is Say A. The group wanted to hear their fans shout out the name during their live performances.

    Check out miss A's "Only You" MV here:

    miss A “Only You” M/V


    This legendary K-pop group has so many achievements under their belt that saying they are a strong influence in the K-pop industry is an understatement. From best-selling albums to sold-out concerts, BIGBANG cemented their name as one of the best K-pop groups of all time.

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    Their fandom is called VIP which literally stands for "Very Important Person" because their fans are very important to the group. BIGBANG doesn’t have an official color but their lightstick has a yellow crown.

    Their hit song, "Bang Bang Bang," which was released six years ago now has over 581 million views. Check it out and you'll find yourself jamming to the music here:


  5. Apink - Pink Panda

    Debuting in 2011, Apink became popular with their fresh and innocent image. They continued releasing albums over the years which achieved commercial success. The group's music style also evolved and matured with experts saying Apink is one of the most successful groups in changing their sound but still retaining their popularity.

    [MV] Apink _ I don't Know

    Apink's fans are known as Pink Panda, a wordplay on the group's name and the Korean word for "fan" (paen). Even their lightstick is shaped like a pink panda! Apink's official fandom color is none other than strawberry pink.

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    On February 14, 2022, Apink released their special album, Horn, with the title track, "Dilemma." K-pop fans were amazed as Apink becomes the first girl group to win a music show in their 11th year. Watch the "Dilemma" MV here:

    Apink 'Dilemma' MV


    Among the roster of K-pop boy groups as we know it, CNBLUE stood out from the rest with their band concept. Their pop-rock sound got them a strong following in South Korea and many other countries. CNBLUE actually debuted in Japan in 2009 before debuting in South Korea in 2010.

    [MV] CNBLUE_ Loner

    The band's fandom name is BOICE, a combination of the words "blue" and "voice." Blue represents CNBLUE and voice represents their fans. Their official color is (you guessed it!) blue.

    Check out the MV for their latest song, "Love Cut," here:

    CNBLUE (Love Cut) MV

  7. IU - Uaena

    Second generation K-pop didn't just bring us iconic K-pop groups—we got amazing soloists as well. One of them is singer-songwriter IU who has already become a household name in the music industry. She continues to release chart-topping songs and albums and is known for giving world-class performances during her concerts. IU has also received several awards and nominations and her popularity continues to grow over the years.

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    IU_ Good Day_ MV

    Her fandom is called Uaena. It means "You (U) love (ae; Sino-Korean) me (na; Korean)." The official fandom color is neon or lime green.

    Her latest album, Pieces, is a compilation of her unreleased songs, including "Next Stop" which she performed live in this clip:

    [IU] 'Next Stop' - Pre-release Live Clip

  8. TVXQ - Cassiopeia

    TVXQ's journey as a K-pop act is truly colorful. Starting out as a five-member group, TVXQ experienced soaring popularity and widespread recognition within South Korea, Japan, and many other countries. The group has broken so many records on sales and concert attendance among other achievements. After three of the original members left the group, TVXQ promoted as a duo and continued to gain success.

    TVXQ! 'Hug' MV

    The group's fans are known as Cassiopeia, a constellation that has five points. Their official color is red.

    Check out one of the most popular TVXQ songs, "Mirotic" here:


  9. 2NE1 - Blackjacks

    2NE1 rose to fame for breaking the K-pop girl group stereotype with their strong image and experimental music. Their songs spanned a variety of genres from electropop, R&B, and even reggae. In the Philippines, they became widely known partly because of Dara who had a successful career in the country before going back to South Korea to pursue becoming a K-pop star.

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    2NE1 - FIRE(Space Ver.) M/V

    2NE1's fandom name is called Blackjacks because, in the card game Blackjack, players must aim to get 21 points. Their official fandom color is hot pink.

    Watch this clip of 2NE1 meeting Filipino fans during their meet and greet in SM Mall of Asia:

    Bandila: 2NE1 members meet Pinoy fans

  10. SHINee - Shawols

    Known for being amazing live performers, SHINee debuted with their first EP, Replay, which achieved immediate success. They also started a fashion trend during their early days and continued to influence the Hallyu wave with their music. With their great vocals and choreography, SHINee continues to release albums successfully as a group and as solo artists.

    SHINee (Replay)' MV

    The group's fans are known as Shawols, short for SHINee World. Their official fandom color is pearl aqua.

    Check out SHINee's performance stage of one of their recent releases, "Don't Call Me":

    SHINee 'Don't Call Me' The Performance Stage

  11. Girls' Generation - Sones

    Last but definitely not the least, Girls' Generation, also known as SNSD, is one of the most prominent K-pop groups globally. Branded as "The Nation's Girl Group" in South Korea, their songs are immensely popular that even their debut song, "Into the New World," is being covered by newer girl groups in the industry. Aside from their group activities, the members have branched out to different areas of entertainment activities like acting, vlogging, and variety shows.

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    Girls' Generation (Into The New World) MV

    Girls' Generation's fandom name is SONE (pronounced so-won). It means "wish" in Korean. Their official color is pastel rose pink.

    Watch the MV of one of Girls' Generation’s hit songs, "Gee" here:

    Girls' Generation 'Gee' MV

Second generation K-pop truly gave us great groups and amazing music K-pop fans will listen to for a long time. Beyond this list, there are more K-pop acts worth checking out like Wonder Girls, 4Minute, BEAST (now Highlight), Infinite, and so much more. Have fun going down the rabbit hole!


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