That is the moment- or collection of moments- that set the entire fandom ablaze- the moment our adorable puppy Baekhyun shed his fluffy fur and became a sculpted god.
Now I’m not so conservative that I can’t appreciate abs being flashed at me- from my bias no less- but I couldn’t help but wonder what he had gone through for them. For years, the only Baek-abs we’ve known were the Nutella abs and I was completely content with that. Yet there were clearly some who weren’t and kept requesting that he reveals some actual abs and it worked. Were the fans happy? Well, judging by all the convulsing fancams and screaming loud enough to wake the dead, I’d say they were beyond the valley of happy. My Amino and Tumblr feeds were flooded with gifs upon gifs and barely visible fan-cams of those ten or so seconds and I was appreciative. Until I saw a gif that made me change my view completely.
|BAEKHYUN SPEAKS OF HIS DIET AT EX'ORDIUM|
I’m not an expert in healthy diets but I’m pretty sure this is not one. For me, it put it a little damper on the ab reveal, which I’m sure was NOT Baekhyun’s intention by telling the fans of how he joined the Exo Ab Club. But it got me thinking about what the other members went through to join that club and if it was as extreme as this 3-month diet or not.
Our Baozi was one of the first members to shed his cutesie image and the reaction was astounding. One by one, the members followed in ab reveals or promises of them. Another recent addition to the Exo Ab Club is Chanyeol who was absolutely not shy about showing off what he achieved. ChanBaek were such polar opposites in this respect because Baekhyun covered up (as well as he could) after about five seconds, while Chanyeol was flashing everyone at every moment he could. I don’t think anyone was complaining, and if they did, it was because he was causing heart palpitations everywhere.
|EX' ORDIUM: ARTIFICIAL LOVE PERFORMANCE, CHANYEOL FOCUS|
But back to my original question: do we expect too much of our idols? We want them to be perfect singers, perfect rappers, perfect dancers and perfect friends. All of those are part of the job requirement but are sculpted abs? It’s definitely a by-product of all the dancing that they do, and there are obviously idols who want abs for themselves, but what about cases like Baekhyun’s where they purposely go on this ab-building plan to please their fans? We all know that Baekhyun loves his food, and he even said it himself that we should expect him to return with “piggy fat” next time. So then, did we force him into this ab-reveal and if so, why?
How many of you can honestly say that you want your idols to go through extreme diets and train this hard just so we can appreciate something we can’t even touch. Think about it for a second- we know how busy Exo is with tours upon tours and producing new music. Now, to fit in gym training while on a no-carb diet…I can only imagine the stress and the fatigue. And to chew food and spit it out again is not exactly mentally stimulating either. If that’s what he went through for 3 months, I’d rather have Nutella-abs, food loving Baekpuppy than this.
Kyungsoo is the only member left to reveal his abs and I don’t want to hear about him having gone through extreme lengths for a few months just so he can be ogled by a few fans. If he doesn’t want them, then I am content with it. At the end of it all, I wouldn’t be too pleased about being the reason that he stops eating properly or trains too hard or too long and tires himself out. It’s not worth it just so that he can shed his Squishysoo image.
We have to realise that we may have them plastered on our walls, decorating our digital devices and listening to their music almost constantly but we do not own them. They are their own people and they should be able to decide if they want to change their image and how long they will give themselves to do it. All that should matter to us is that they’re sharing their exo planet talent and giving us content that we love. That they hold concerts and fan meetings and even share their lives with us on social media. We get so much every day; so does it really matter it they have the body of a Greek sculpture or not? As long as they’re healthy, happy and content with life, I will never stop being a fan. I was Baekhyun-biased before his abs and I’m still going to have him as the lock screen of all my devices long after his abs turn into adorable piggy fat. The most important thing to me is that he keeps blessing my ears with his smooth vocals and doesn’t stop being such a unique soul. And the same thing goes for every other member of Exo.
But all of this my opinion and I wanted to see if other Exo-l’s agreed with me. So comment down below and tell me if I’m overreacting or not.
Image and gif credits: Onehallyu.com, happyvirus_beagle and to all other original and respective owners
Written and compiled by: Acacia@exodicted.net
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