K-pop supergroup reaches the age of compulsory military service in their home country, fan groups, aka the “BTS ARMY,” are begging officials to let the boyband serve side by side.
Despite topping the Billboard charts and generating international fan fervor comparable to that of The Beatles, K-pop super group BTS will not be exempted from compulsory military service at home in South Korea.
Since 1957, South Korean male citizens between the ages of 18 and 28 have been required to complete approximately two years of compulsory military service. Women are not required to serve, but they may voluntarily enlist.
BTS formed in 2013, and its oldest member, Jin, will be turning 27 this December. The other six members of the group will reach the age of conscription within the next few years.
Not completing their compulsory military service could result in various punishments, including a prohibition on overseas travel, which would surely hinder the globally popular group’s lucrative international tour regimen.
Various BTS fan groups have been lobbying the South Korean government to exempt the boyband from serving. But Korean Ministry of Defense officials told THR this week that an exemption will not be possible.
The BTS ARMY (short for “Adorable Representative MC for Youth”) appear to be accepting that their heroes will probably need to take a hiatus to serve. In recent weeks, online fan campaigns have shifted their emphasis, demanding that the boyband be able to serve together as a group, rather than be split up to serve in different divisions of the armed services.