June 25: Kcon Day 2

This is the continuation of the previous post. This post records my thoughts on Kcon NY Day 2.

For Day 2, I went with two of my friends; I only found out they were going to Kcon (and that they liked BTS) four days before I graduated. I’m glad I went with them because the convention part was more fun. One of my friends let me wear a BTS HYYH shirt with Jimin’s name and number on the back. Even though Suga is my bias, I still wore it because I love all of the members. The line wasn’t long and took less than 10 minutes to get registered. I got the BTS fan engagement, and I felt like someone above was looking out for me; I’d been okay with anyone since the only one I didn’t listen to yet was Day 6, but I was especially happy when I got BTS.

After registering and getting the Kcon bags, we went to DANakaDAN and JunCurryAhn’s panel. JunCurryAhn arrived late, so in the meantime DANakaDAN decided to prank him. The audience inside would scream a quick “Woah” and dab whenever JunCurryAhn said “but yeah” (a phrase he says a lot) or “Chipotle” (thanks to the energetic guy behind me). The audience outside would scream “K what” whenever he said “Kpop”.

One of my friends is a really big fan of JunCurryAhn. My other friend is the type who gets stuff done with no hesitation. So when they were asking if anyone had any questions, friend 2 asked if they could give friend 1 a hug as a graduation gift. They agreed, and I think she’s going to be in their video. I’m so happy for her and so grateful to my other friend for what she did. Later on, friend 2 saw JRE and got friend 1 to take a picture with him. Friend 1 is also a big fan of JRE, so her day got even better.

After their panel, I went to wait in line for BTS’s fan engagement. I waited in the wrong line (it was the Day 6 line). I wasn’t late for the fan engagement, but I was just in the back again. I tried to record it since I figured if I can’t see it, maybe my phone can. At the end, Jin dabbed although I didn’t get it on camera since I stopped recording when BTS said they were going to take a group picture.

Some time after that, we went to see the ANX battles at the convention stage. I felt like the performances became better after every group. Then we left to attend a Youtubers panel since one of my friends likes Jasmine from 2MinJinkJongKey. I was surprised to hear that they would record their initial reactions to it, and then stopped recording to gather their thoughts and analyze what happened before continuing to record. When I think about it now, it seems obvious, but I feel like people don’t give reactors enough credit sometimes.

When I got into the concert area, I heard screaming so I thought something was happening. Apparently, the crowd was screaming because BTS’s Fire mv was playing. Before the concert, Kcon would play one music video from each artist, and it would loop. Whenever BTS’s Fire mv came on, the crowd screamed very loudly. They also screamed very loudly whenever Jin had a solo part in the mv. They also screamed pretty loudly when Mamamoo's mv played.

The concert started at the same time (7:30 pm) and ended around the same time (10:00 pm). JunCurryAhn opened the concert with a few performances. The crowd especially went wild when he performed BTS’s Save Me, which included some dance while he played the violin (just like in his youtube video). Rap Mon and Ailee were the MCs again. Eric Nam and Ailee were the MCs before BTS’s performance. I think the performance order was Mamamoo, Eric Nam, Day 6, special performance with Eric Nam and Ailee, and BTS.

Mamamoo has a special place in my heart, and I have a girl crush on them. Everyone else seems to be the same since there was so much screaming when they performed. Eric Nam started his performance by standing in the audience with a bouquet of flowers. He walked towards the stage and handed out flowers to the audience. At one point, he started drinking water and the audience screamed. He tried to calm them by saying that there are people who look good drinking water but he wasn’t one of them; the audience seemed to disagree.

During Rap Mon and Ailee’s mcing, Ailee asked Rap Mon to do some aegyo and he did in English. The audience went wild and Rap Mon asked how we knew what aegyo was. I think Ailee ruffled Rap Mon’s hair afterwards when the lights dimmed for the artist’s performance. I really like their interactions. I think (I could be wrong) on Day 1 when they were introducing Dynamic Duo, Rap Mon said that when he said a certain word (it was in Korean) the audience would say a certain word. Ailee jumped in on it and said that when she says “Ailee”, the audience says “slay”. Rap Mon looked like he was laughing at her. Afterwards she was laughing and then apologized for getting too carried away.

I didn’t know much about Day 6, so I was surprised to see them performing with instruments. They also covered CNBlue, Big Bang, and Wonder Girls. Mamamoo also joined them in the performance. There are a lot of Day 6 fans. After that, there was a special performance by Eric Nam and Ailee. They began by sitting in a car that was being lifted up. At the end, they apologized to each other since it was awkward for them because it was a love song and in the performance they had to do lovey-dovey actions.

Then BTS performed and everyone was standing and screaming. It was so loud. They started with Fire and then Save Me. I tried to say the fan chants, but I didn’t hear anyone doing it, so I stopped. I did do some fan chants when everyone did it for the catchy parts like “jjeoreo” in Dope. When BTS was introducing themselves, Suga took off his earpiece, closed his eyes, and put his hand by his ear to listen to the cheers.

After that, they performed Boyz with Fun. I decided I would scream as loud as I could because I probably won't have the opportunity to do that again anytime soon (I screamed during every artist but even more with BTS) and I choked. Jin was approaching my side of the arena when that happened, so I hope he didn’t see that. I figured they would perform this song because they usually do at Kcon. It’s a way to engage the fans more since they would split up and use all the stage, and it’s not a song with hard choreography so they could rest.

Then they performed Cypher pt. 3, and I was very surprised and happy. I always wanted to see Cypher pt. 3 performed live, and they usually don’t perform it at Kcon. I thought Cypher pt. 3 was banned from being performed, but maybe not at Kcon; I assumed they would perform I Need U instead. At the beginning, they threw water from their water bottles on the audience, which I think they do every time they perform Cypher. Then they finished their performance with Dope, which I know international fans love a lot.

At the end of the concert, all the artists went on stage. Eric Nam started dancing and V joined him. I saw Suga, V, and Jungkook dab. Jungkook rapidly dabbed so many times. I’m not sure who showed them dabbing, but they seem to be obsessed with it. Everyone was walking around waving at the audience. At one time, Suga was on the stage at the back standing at the end towards my section and waving. I looked at him and waved with my light stick, and I felt for a few seconds I made eye contact with him, especially since I didn’t think I saw anyone else in front of me waving at him. But I probably didn’t.

After the concert, I had to meet my friends. Apparently, Uber went up 4.4%. My friend thought that it was just the place, so we walked away from the venue but the price was still high. We went back and my friend succeeded in finding her other friends to share an Uber with. Apparently an underclassmen who I had history class with was also a BTS fan. On the way to meet her, there were people running. People were waiting by a fence where BTS’s van was waiting. One of my friends ran and got to see Jungkook, V, and Suga entering the van. I didn’t run because I didn’t want to leave my other friend, and I figured I wouldn’t be able to see since I was short.

I didn’t record the performances for Day 2 because recording stopped me from enjoying the performances as much. If I recorded, I had to pay attention to my phone. It also tired out my arms, and I couldn’t use the light stick, dance/jump, or cheer as loudly. Part of me regrets not recording it, but I figured there would be better quality fancams. Plus, I knew BTS wasn’t just going to stay performing on the stage at the back and would move out, so it would be even more difficult to try to record everything. However, I did try to get pictures of the different artists when they were introducing themselves. I’ll leave the links to the posts on my twitter.

It was honestly such an amazing experience. I was really tired from being in the sun and getting sunburned by the time the concert began, so my mind would wander when the artists performed (it’s a bad tendency of mine). It also made me realize even more how human the artists are and how different of a reality they have. Sometimes, it's difficult to realize that they are regular people just like your friend or classmate when you mostly see them on the internet. When I felt myself getting into kpop, I kept telling myself not to idealize them and instead look at them as regular people who are in the music industry. Seeing them live made me internalize that even more.

If anyone else plans to go to Kcon, I suggest going with friends since the convention part is more fun that way. During the concert, it’s okay to have fun and cheer, wave the light stick, or dance even if the people next to you aren’t (there's bound to be people in front or behind you doing the same thing). I’m really shy and quiet, so I didn’t think I’d be the type to do that. I know that if I were to actually meet and have a conversation with them, I would definitely not do that, but this was a concert and was also a way to show support. Also, be careful in Newark, especially at night. There were people yelling and cursing at each other on both nights; Newark is a pretty dangerous place in NJ.



Eric Nam

Day 6

Set 1
Set 2
Set 3

Rap Mon and Ailee & General

BTS Fan Engagement:
Part 1
Part 2