The sugary-sweet sounds of Korean pop music seem pretty harmless. Simple songs like Psy’s “Gangnam Style” or the music of Girls’ Generation don’t exactly seem like hotbeds of corruption, but behind every hit song out of the K-pop machine are years of torment and exploitation.
Aspiring stars are pushed through the grinder of one of the most vicious entertainment industries in the world, starting when they’re kids. Children as young as ten years old get locked into unbreakable decade-long contracts, spending their better part of their lives owned by agencies that take advantage of them creatively and sexually.
Some come out celebrities, but most are just chewed up and spit out. They’re exploited and pimped out for years and then kicked to the curb, with nothing to show for going through the strangely dark and twisted world of Korean bubblegum pop.