The second season of last year’s hit show, Produce 101, has finally kicked off with their first episode today! Following the plot of the previous season, the show started off with the trainees showing off their skills in placement tests.
Last season, DIA members, Chae-yeon and Hee-hyun, had made headlines when reports revealed they would be participating in the program, despite having already made their debut. At the time, public reaction was mixed – some felt they were taking opportunities away from trainees who hadn’t been able to debut yet while others sympathized with their group’s lack of popularity.
Hee-hyun had survived up to the final round, making the top 22 rank. Chae-yeon, on the other hand, had finished the show in seventh place, making the top 11 cutoff. She was promoted with the show’s produced girl group, IOI, for a year and was able to solidify her popularity and bring some recognition to DIA.
Following Chae-yeon’s success story, it came to no one’s surprise that more than a handful of already debuted boy band members decided to participate in Season 2. Pledis sent in four members of their boy group, NU’EST, who had debuted in the same year as Korea’s top current boy band, EXO.
The four NU’EST members’ placement test performance was aired on tonight’s broadcast and upon seeing the boys prepare their performance, Produce 101 trainee, Kahi, couldn’t help but shed a few tears.
Kahi had previously been a member of girl group, After School, which made her a former labelmate and senior to the NU’EST members. “I feel so bad for them,” she cried. “They’re so unfortunate”.
During an interview segment on the episode, member, Kim Jong-hyun, admitted he avoided looking at Kahi while on stage to prevent himself from crying as well.
Let’s hope the boys make it big with their participation in this show!