Over the years, SM Entertainment has acquired the token association of being the ‘best looking‘ agency in the industry. Famous for producing entertainers like SNSD and DBSK, the company has an reputation for debuting artists of mediocre (or no) talent, but with god/goddess like good looks. However, is SM really the best looking agency? Let’s have a look at the evidence.
Ask yourself these questions honestly.
Who in Super Junior would be considered to have god-like looks? I can only come up with Siwon.
Who is SNSD is objectively good looking? I’ve got Sooyoung, Tiffany and Seohyun (everyone else just looks like an ordinary girl).
What about DBSK? ….. I’m Xiah bias but without his charisma, well….
And should we even consider Shinee?…..
In other words, maybe 30% of SM Artists are dangerously attractive, 60% are good looking (with makeup & lighting) and 10% is Shindong. This is probably the same distribution in YG or JYP.
It was only when I began convincing myself that Eunhyuk was pretty hot that I realised the extent to which SM had made gullible fans of us all. How have they done this? Well, there are two possible explanations: 1) the Cheerleader effect and 2) Emotional Contagion.
The Cheerleader effect:
The Cheerleader effect is used to describe a situation when a group of girls/guys look attractive together, but when viewed individually, are actually not that hot. Take a look at Super Junior for instance:
As a group: HOTNESS OVERLOAD! *fan girl explosion* -> puddle on the floor
As individuals: UMM……WAT?
The cheerleader effect is perhaps why SM tends to debut groups with more than 5 people, and in the case of Super Junior (where there are more faces to hide), 13 people.
When I first joined the Kpop scene, I couldn’t understand why everyone found Yoona and/or Jaejoong so terribly good looking. For me, Yoona just looked like a normal girl, and Jaejoong…well…he also looked like a normal girl. It wasn’t too long before I started spazzing over them haha. I blame this on Emotional Contagion.
Emotional Contagion is a physiological phenomenon where we mimic other people’s feelings and adopt them as our own, thus leading to emotional convergence. So for example, if all your friends think a particular person is attractive, you may also start adopting this belief. This is similar to the ‘bandwagon effect’ and ‘herd mentality’. Emotional contagion is an effective business strategy because all that SM needs to do is plant the first seeds of ‘obsession‘, and then let our impressionable human nature do it’s work. Ah that wickedly evil Lee Soo Man! 😛
Do you agree with the above? Or am I just trying to use pop culture and science to mask my extreme jealousy? Hit the Comments and let me know!