Total Score: 4.86
Sound Quality: 4
Singing Quality: 5
Contextual Fit: 3
Release Date: 04/23/2008
(Gifs from the Korean MV purely due to higher quality source)
🎺 Dan-da-dannnnn! 🎺 It’s the most successful (but not the last) Super Junior subunit, Super Junior-M! SJ-M (M for Mandarin) was introduced in order to get those tasty, tasty Chinese fan-dollars (er, fan-yuan). The leader was Hangeng, being the only Chinese member of the original group, and the rest of the group was filled out by Donghae, Kyuhyun, Ryeowook, Siwon, and the two most controversial members of the group, born-in-China person Zhou Mi and Chinese-Canadian person Henry Lau. Neither of whom, you may note, was in the original 12 or original 13 Super Junior members. DRAMA ENSUED.
As I have (hopefully) made clear elsewhere on the site, I am of the belief that no matter what Eunhyuk said at Super Show 5, being a member of a subunit of Super Junior inherently makes you a member of Super Junior. It’s basic math. Zhou Mi and Henry are SJ members. I will brook no dissent on this topic here; if you want to have only13 arguments, do it somewhere else.
The existence of SJ-M is also the reason why I’m about 90% convinced that EXO was supposed to be a Super Junior do-over, and it actually was, just not in the ways that SM wanted. (I’ve also heard a rumor that EXO not going according to plan is the main reason NCT exists – I don’t know enough about EXO or NCT to say, but makes sense if true.)
So from a musical perspective, how does this work as an introduction to a new sub-unit, which I’m sure was intended to last for a while (unlike SJ-T, which I’m pretty sure was never meant to be more than a one-off)? Well, Zhou Mi is taller than Siwon, who was already tallest in the group, and has a dazzling smile, and from a singing perspective he is probably top 3 in the group along with Kyuhyun and Ryeowook. (Though he’s not great here.) Hangeng, getting to sing in Chinese on an SJ song for the first time ever, well, I don’t want to speculate on how he felt at this particular point but given that his Korean was notoriously iffy, it was probably nice to sing in a familiar language. Henry does not add much, on this song anyway, other than a boyishly cute face; remember how I said on other songs that Hangeng has a pretty bland, flat (in tone not pitch) way of singing? Henry does too on this. Hangeng is less bland on this one, actually, probably because of the language difference, and maybe also due to getting more parts due to less dudes in the group. The success of this in China probably rode a lot more on any pre-existing SJ success in China than on this song. Or I’d like to think so, anyway, cause the song’s not great.
As a song, the “it’s gonna be me!” chorus sticks in your head, but not much other than that. The song is gently happy in a not memorable way; the dance routine actually puts more energy in this than is really there. That transition into E major – C major right after the bridge is pretty cool, though the falsetto getting into it is weak. But then it hops right back into the pale cheerful “it’s gonna be me.”
The video has lots of smiling cute SJ, finding various giant letters around town and assembling them in a studio into a big SUPER JUNIOR M. And also dancing under a power station tower thingy whatever you call those. Ryeowook’s hairstyle is ostensibly the same as everyone else’s but looks girlier on him than everyone else for some reason. Hangeng stole a deep v-neck from Kangin’s Don’t Don closet and looks a lot like Squall; just needs a furrier collar and a Griever necklace.