Perhaps, it was the most-moving performance that JTBC’s show Hip-Hop Nation witnessed in its recent history.
Episode 6 of the competition show held a theme of family in which rap contestant and grandmother Kim Young-ok performed her self-written lyrics for the song Grandmother Bird with the help of MONSTA X member Jooheon and Kihyun. It moved the audience to tears. Jooheon wrote his own lyrics for his solo which were dedicated to his grandmother who had passed away. Rapping with the utmost passion, members of the audience were seen shedding tears. The video of the performance has also been posted online.
He raps, “When I was sick, laying down after a hard time. You called me once a day and reassured me that I was the best. And like an idiot, you hid your tears. Now that I look back at it, I regret is so much. When I was young, everything you told me was annoying and tiring and was just too loud for me. I cut every single word coldly. I’m sorry my love, how are you up there. I got to fulfill my dreams and do what I wanted to do. I don’ t know if you’re watching me right now. I hope my true feelings touch your heart. My lover, you are my live, my pride, my grandma, my grandmother. Wipe your tears and smile in my direction.” (translations provided by @MONSTAXTRANS and published by Koreaboo)
Motioning towards the audience, Kim Young Ok tells them, “I love you my grandchildren. All grandmothers love their grandchildren.”
— MXT #몬스타엑스 #EX_GIRL (@MONSTAXTRANS) May 6, 2016
Grandma Ok’s stunning performance has also created an online buzz. When netizens first heard about a hip-hop show that would feature grandmas competing against each other to become the top rapper, most dismissed the show as a guaranteed flop.
However, aftear watching the first episode of the jTBC show, titled Hip-Hop Nation, many netizens have changed their view on the competition. Although most netizens still consider the show funny and ridiculous, many have conceded that several of the contestants were incredibly impressive upon first impression, Koraboo reported.
The first round of this elderly rap battle was aired in the middle of last month. The average age of the all-female participants is 65. Korea Joongang Daily reported that despite the initial concerns that the show might be the subject of ridicule, the sincere performances and rapping skills of the granny rapstars, veteran actresses Kim Young-ok, Yang Hee-kyung, Lee Kyung-jin, Lee Yong-nyeo and Moon Hee-kyung, pansori singer Kim Young-im, and TV personalities Choi Byung-joo and Yeom Jung-in, amazed viewers as well as their young mentors.