It won’t come across as a surprise if you’re told that BTS is one of the biggest (and best) things that has happened in this decade. Whether or not you follow Korean entertainment, you definitely would’ve watched the boys setting the stage on fire with their moves, while singing songs that have broken all Billboard records.
After debuting in 2013, this boy band has accomplished a lot in the years that followed. The band members, namely Jin, J-Hope, V, Suga, Jungkook, RM and Jimin, have a music style that covers a wide range of genres, hence striking a chord with fans of all tastes!
One of the things that makes the boy band so popular among the young followers is that some of the themes their songs are based on touch on pressing issues such as mental health and loss. We are here with 15 facts about the band that you should know if you’re part of the ARMY! And even if you are a hardcore fan, this is the time to quiz yourself!
1. BTS stands for Bangtan Sonyeondan, which means ‘bulletproof boy scouts’
Yes, you heard it right. While mostly everyone refers to the band as BTS, only a few know that it actually stands for Bangtan Sonyeondan, which literally means ‘bulletproof boy scouts’ in Korean. J-Hope, one of the members said that the name stands for the chief desire of the group, that is to fight stereotypes and criticisms, and the expectations that target adolescents like ‘bullets’. However, in July 2017, the group announced that with their new brand identity, BTS now stands for ‘Beyond the Scene’ as well, an ode to the youth going forward and facing realities of life.
2. ARMY = Adorable Representative M.C. for Youth
Isn’t it adorable? Well, you just found out that BTS calls their fans ‘adorable’! The members say that as ARMY is military, BTS is the armor, which is a metaphor that the band and the fans belong together, like pieces of puzzle! But hold on, as in an interview BTS’s leader RM revealed that initially they had almost chosen “The Bells” as the name of their fandom, as ‘bell’ in Korean sounds like ‘bang wool’. So the bang of ‘Bangtan’ and that of the bells (and the fans) fitted well!
3. Music of the band is often set in an alternate universe
No, we are not talking about the universe the music of BTS transports you to every time you plug in your headphones. The management company of BTS, Big Hit Entertainment, created the Bangtan Universe or BTS Universe, which is a fictional storyline that involves short films, books, webtoons and music videos, following the characters which are based on the band members! First introduced with the song I Need U, the universe comes into play with every music video produced now.
4. BTS is like a boon to the South Korean economy
Not only has BTS raised the music (and dance) standards of the entertainment industry, but the tourism of their home country South Korea too! As per a research conducted by the Hyundai Research Institute, 1 in 13 tourists stated that their reason for visiting the country was nothing else but BTS. This has also in many ways increased the popularity of Korean skincare products, and K dramas.
The group has also donated millions of won to welfare causes like the Black Lives Matter campaign, schools and child funds. BTS and Big Hit Entertainment launched the Love Myself anti-violence campaign with UNICEF in 2017, making them the first artist in South Korea to raise social funds for a global campaign.
5. The net worth of BTS lies in millions
Not only is the music of BTS out of the world, so is their net worth! Music sales, touring and brand endorsements, among others come together to give BTS a net worth an estimated of $100 million.
6. RM, the group’s leader, learned English from watching F.R.I.E.N.D.S
In an interview with Ellen Degeneres, RM revealed that the popular American sitcom Friends taught him English. He further said that back in the day when he was fourteen or fifteen, his parents, like many other Korean parents, encouraged him to watch Friends. It felt like a ‘torture’ for him then, but he considers himself as the lucky one, thanks to his mom! RM is generally the one who speaks for the band during English interviews.
7. BTS was the first K-pop group to receive a Twitter emoji
Just after three years of their debut, in 2016 BTS received their Twitter emojis. And they were the first Korean account to have achieved 10 million followers on Twitter. Let’s say, BTS knows the trick on garnering a fanbase through social media! With 34 million+ followers on Twitter, a whopping 51 million+ on Instagram and 62 million+ subscribers on YouTube, they surely are the influencers we need today.
OMG!!! THE EMOJIS 🥺🤧Its working now ARMY!! 💜💜 #RM #JIN #SUGA #JHOPE #JIMIN #V #JUNGKOOK #BTS #BTSARMY#7ToEternityWithBTS #BTSFESTA2020 @BTS_twt— BTS×ARMY⁷ Voting Team (@01Btsxarmy) June 12, 2020
For those who can’t still yet see it here’s what it looks like 😭👇 pic.twitter.com/tMBwDs53yK
8. BTS has the most commented on music videos on YouTube
In 2020, BTS’s music video for the hit DNA, which released in 2017, became the most commented on music video in the history of YouTube! With over 6.4 million comments, it broke all records. It is followed by another of the band’s song Boy with Luv which has over 6.1 million comments. It surpassed Gangnam Style, the 2012 overnight mega-hit by Psy. Well, we are not surprised, nor you should be. It’s BTS: it deserves all our love.
9. It took 3 years to form the BTS we know today
The formation of BTS started way back in 2010, three years before its debut. The production company’s, Big Hit Entertainment, CEO Bang Si-hyuk, impressed with RM’s rapping originally decided to go forward by forming a hip-hop group. Sometime later in the formation years it was decided that this group should be a K-pop idol group like Seo Taiji and Boys of the 90s. This was done to keeping in mind that the band would be able to make socially conscious music this way. Slated to debut in 2011, they didn’t debut until 2013, due to many postponements. But finally, having been reorganized into a more traditional idol group, BTS debuted and never looked back!
10. J-Hope was a street dancer
And you were thinking where do the dancing talents of J-Hope come from! He used to be a street dancer with a dance group called Neutron. What’s more, he used to compete in dance battles held locally in his hometown Gwangju and, not surprisingly enough, would win most of them. J-Hope has even won some national dance competitions.
11. Jungkook wanted to be a tattoo artist
Believe it or not, but Jungkook had his priorities set straight before BTS happened. His ten year plan included becoming a tattoo artist. He even revealed that other than becoming a tattoo artist, he planned on owning and running a duck meat shop as part of his 10 year plan! Well, who would have thought. Not Jungkook, obviously.
12. Originally, BTS was supposed to be just a hip-hop group
Doesn’t sound like the BTS we love today, right? But that’s true. Originally, the CEO of the production company that launched them wanted the band to be specifically a hip-hop act, similar to YG Entertainment’s 1TYM, a four-member South Korean boy band who became popular in the late 90s. However, Si-hyuk, the CEO of Big Hit Entertainment, dropped the initial plan and instead to go further with the idea of an idol band, similar to Seo Taiji and Boys, a three member band of the 90s, who didn’t stick with a specific genre while producing music, but experimented with various popular Western music genres. His reason was that he wanted to create a group who could freely make music that was socially relevant and was without restrictions the K-pop bands of the time were known for.
13. Once upon a time they lived in a one-room apartment
Now this one’s a little hard to believe. BTS? With their $100 million net worth? Well, they were not always as wealthy and popular as they are today. the band members, who have always been best friends, used to live in a small one-room apartment together back when they were idol trainees. They would have to work hard to make their ends meet and would sleep in the small room. But hard work pays off, and no other than BTS seems to prove that dreams do come true!
14. Yoongi Loves the Cartoon Character Kumamon
Okay, now we have the most adorable fact saved for the last. Yoongi is an ultimate Kumamon fan, which is a brown bear character. For those of you who don’t know, Kumamon is the mascot bear representing the Kumamoto prefecture (a district in Japan). It represents the country, and more specifically the prefecture’s playful rootedness and welcoming spirit. And Yoongi loves this bear. Isn’t it the cutest?
15. And finally, Jimin has the most nicknames
Jimin can never fall short of the group’s attention and the funny yet cute nicknames he has gotten. Heard of Mochi, Chimchim, Prince of Busan, Jiminie? Well, Jimin is all of them!
Did you know these facts about BTS already? If yes, then hi-five ARMY! Well if no, then welcome to ARMY. At the end, let’s just say: ARMY assemble!