All South Korean men must join the military. The cutoff age for entertainers to enlist in South Korea is 28. Here are Korean stars joining military in 2020.
Woo Do Hwan
Up and rising actor Woo Do Hwan enlisted in the military on July 6th as an active duty soldier. Playing multiple roles in dramas like ‘Tempted’ and ‘My Country: The New Age’, he made his breakthrough in 2020 with his role in ‘The King: Eternal Monarch’ and received praise for his portrayal of dual roles as Jo Eunseob and Jo Young.
Read more: Woo Do Hwan joins the military
Park Bo Gum
One of Korea’s most loved actors, nicknamed the ‘nation’s boyfriend’, will be enlisting in the military band as a cultural promotion soldier this summer on August 31st. In the first half of 2020, he had a cameo role in the last episode of high-rated K-Drama ‘Itaewon Class’. Park Bo Gum was also cast in the youth drama ‘A Record of Youth’ as a model who is looking to shift to an acting career.
Jinho is the first member of Pentagon to enlist in the military. He enlisted on May 11th as an active duty soldier in the midst of MNET’s survival show ‘Road to Kingdom’. In the second round of the competition, Pentagon did a goodbye stage for their main vocal, performing a mashup of their 2018 hit song ‘Shine’ and ‘Spring Snow’. It turned out to be an emotional roller coaster as it went from being a fun and happy stage to a bittersweet performance, leaving all the members in tears.
Shortly after making his solo debut, EXO leader Suho (Jun-myeon) enlisted on May 14th as a public service officer. He is the third member to enlist after Xiumin and D.O. His debut mini album ‘Self Portrait’, released on March 30th, was a success and won several music shows. Right now, the rest of the EXO members are focusing on solo and unit activities.
BTOB’s Hyunsik, Sungjae and Ilhoon
BTOB members Sungjae and Hyunsik both enlisted in the military on May 11th as part of the military band. Ilhoon followed in their footsteps two weeks later on May 28th but is currently serving as a public service worker. He is the last BTOB member to enlist in the military. At the moment, everyone else in the group is serving their enlistment except Peniel who does not need to because he is an American citizen, and leader Eunkwang, who was discharged on April 7th of this year.
WINNER’s Jin Woo and Seung Yoon
Jin Woo and Seung Yoon, the two oldest members of WINNER enlisted in the military in early April. This was just shortly after they made their last comeback as a full group with the emotional title track ‘Remember’ on April 9th. The MV for this song recounted their fondest memories over the past six weeks, from their time spent on the reality show ‘Win: Who is Next?’ which formed the group to their world tour. It was a lovely farewell gift to their fans.
VIXX’s main vocalist Ken (Jae-hwan) is the third member of the group to enlist after leader N and Leo. He will join the military band on July 6th. Ken is currently appearing as the lead role in the musical ‘Mefisto’. In addition to being an idol, he has ventured into being a musical actor throughout his career. Since his debut in 2012, Ken has also been a popular voice behind the OSTs for hit K-dramas like ‘The Heirs’, ‘Moorim School’ and ‘Legend of the Blue Sea’.
Other Korean Stars
The following Korean stars join military in 2020, but their enlistment date has not been confirmed yet: Jin from BTS, L from Infinite, Shownu from Monsta X, and Chanyeol from EXO.
Even though it will be hard for fans to say goodbye to their favourite stars, a lot of other idols and actors have been or are getting discharged from the military this year too! Every SHINee member (except Taemin) will be returning in just a few months, as well as members from other second-gen boy groups like B1A4, Infinite, VIXX, BTOB, Highlight, and EXO.