Youngest-ever K-pop idol? Newly debuted RE: Kids Glory member Kwak Jinwoo is only seven

New groups debuting under the Retune Music label has members between the age of 7 to 13 years

                            Youngest-ever K-pop idol? Newly debuted RE: Kids Glory member Kwak Jinwoo is only seven
Kwak Jinwoo, 7, might be the youngest idol to debut in K-Pop history (@official_rekids, @kwakjinwoo2368/Instagram)

K-pop is fast growing and there are multiple groups being made every few months. It’s normal for idols to begin their training at a very young age, but how young is too young when it comes to debuting?

Teens aspiring to become idols have reported to have started auditioning to train with a company in their early teens. It is far too common for young kids to start training to debut as artists once they are a bit older but what is catching the eye of many K-pop enthusiasts is the fact that many young children have not only trained but also debuted as idols before their teenage years.


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7-year-old idol shocks K-pop fans

It was recently discovered that the label Retune Music has launched a few K-pop groups where the idols who have debuted are as young as 7 years old while the oldest members are 13 years old. 

The groups under the said label are called Re:Kids Angel, Re:Kids Bloom, Re:Kids Treasure, Re:Kids Glory, Re:Kids Hero and Re:Kids Crystal. Out of these six groups, there is very limited information and that too only on 4 of these groups. The rookie group that caught a lot of attention on Twitter lately is Re:Kids Glory that debuted on July 30, 2021 with their song, ‘Don’t Forget.’ The group consists of 5 members: Noah, Taehyeong, Jiwoo, Yeonje, and Jinwoo.


Okay for young kids to train so hard?

While many things are unclear, one detail that is catching fans’ attention is the fact that Re:Kids Glory, one of the aforementioned groups, has a member who is only 7 years old. One Twitter user posted a screenshot of the basic information including the age and birth year of this child artist, Kwak Jinwoo, from the website K Profiles. This website is hosted by a group of fans who provide basic information about groups, their members and solo artists. This information helps newer fans get to know their idols better.

Becoming a K-pop idol is a job of great responsibility and currently it is one of the most sought after titles globally. Teens who have just finished schooling are much better equipped to handle idol training till the time they debut. Teenagers who have trained for many years have more experience of being in the real world compared to a child who has debuted as an idol at the age of 7. Here is why fans also think that having children debut as idols at such a young age is not a great idea.


K-Pop fans are not having it

Fans are so skeptical about this idea because fans following K-Pop know that idols are sexualized by their agencies in order for the companies to become popular and idols are treated as money-making assets. The fact that children would have to train so extensively only to make big money for their guardians is not sitting well with some fans as they commented under their music video saying, “They sing really well for their age, and no doubt they are talented. But isn’t this too young for them to debut?” another pointed out the fact that, “They will have to go through all the struggles of being a kpop idol And to think this will be their childhood.” while one more said, “They’re adorable but this industry is so f**ked up, let them be kids please.”

Twitter stans went on a spiral of funny memes where the OP said, “NO WTF A 7 YEAR OLD ?? this is getting out of hand..." to which a lot of others replied saying, "Also, his co-members." Another replied saying, "I’m actually so sad about this, because I see old NCT videos of Dream members at 10-15 and I still feel bad about them training at that age, but at 7 that’s too young :(" while another joked, "Omg new bias." with the picture of a random ultrasound. One more fan said, "There's no way he wanted to be an idol at 7 years like he should be playing cocomelon or something."












Another Twitter user joked, "GAIS. I FOUND THE REAL MAKNAE," with Jinwoo's profile. Other were shocked at his tender age, with one user commenting, "cant believe ppl were born in 2014," while another said "i refuse to acknowledge humans who are born after 2003". One user brought up the issue of consent and child labor saying, "I understand idols being like 15 but seven year olds can't even choose what they want for lunch how the f**k are they supposed to properly consent to being an idol". One user even speculated about the realities of having a K-pop group with such young members, remarking, "I just imagine this kids throwing tantrums and kpop stans starts canceling them for asking for a glass of milk".