My top five favorite girl groups (no order):

  • SPEED
  • S.H.E.
  • Girls’ Generation
  • Morning Musume ’05
  • f(x) 

I didn’t have a 5th group for quite some time. Over two years, f(x) sat well with me on that list. I don’t question it anymore. But their inclusion does stand out. Other than SNSD, those other groups I was drawn to quickly. It took Gee for me to become an SNSD fan, and making them top five didn’t take much time after that. But f(x) took much longer. I’ve like the group from the jump, but I would say it wasn’t until Red Light when I truly became a fan. Ever since then, they had flirted with filling that final spot, and I’ve recently came to the conclusion that they belong in my top five. 

But the key question still remains: How did f(x) become top five? There are plenty of groups who I’ve loved, but never considered them in the list. Wonder Girls and SweetS are the two that immediately come to mind. The thing that both those groups have over f(x) is that they have songs I would consider to have in my favorite girl group songs of all time (possibility even favorite songs, period). I mentioned in the Open Letter that Like This is one of them. SweetS’ Love Like Candy Floss is nothing but nostalgia-filled sweetness and I love the song. I don’t have a f(x) song that ranks like that. 

Time is another consideration. Time in this case can be broken down in two ways: length of awareness, and length of fandom. With the Wonder Girls, they beat f(x) on both fronts. Debuting two years prior gives them a huge awareness lead, plus Irony brought me back to the K-pop fold. My awareness of f(x) has been from the jump as well, but I’ve been aware of WG for longer. While I’ve like f(x) the entire time, again I wouldn’t have considered myself a fan till again when Red Light came out (although I’ve been on the Luna train from jump). But if we are gonna follow my own rules, as long as f(x) continues (I hope those disbandment rumors are false), then they should eclipse them soon enough.

With SweetS, it’s a bit different. They certainly had the lead of the length of awareness due to debuting in 2003, but they disbanded in 2006. f(x) right now has been around longer than SweetS. In terms of length of fandom, they are tied. Although the members of SweetS have gone to do other things in entertainment, I sadly didn’t follow their careers post-disbandment. So it ends up at three years, the same length of time I would consider myself an actual f(x) fan. 

This is all arbitrary. So what if they disbanded, you’ve been listening to their music all this time. Also your rules don’t make complete sense. But all of this is arbitrary. You can have anyone in your top five. It’s yours.

I understand. Everything I’ve said here doesn’t actually matter. It’s my list, I decide who’s on it. But I wanted to walk you through my thought process. Plus there is fun in taking something foolish like this seriously.

So what did f(x) do to become top five? First reason is their catalog. Although they don’t have an all-time song, it’s hard to argue the depth of their catalog. As SM’s long-time experimental group, their music has been more hits than misses. Wonder Girls matches them in terms of diversity of sound, but I find myself listening to full f(x) releases, while when I listen to Wonder Girls, it tends to be just my favorite songs of theirs. I do the same with SweetS, but they don’t close to the breathe or depth of either group’s catalog. 

The other thing f(x) did were their group activities. While the Wonder Girls certainly did things that still entertain me, I’ve found f(x)’s activities more entertaining. Things like when Luna and Sulli appeared on Running Man together or when Yoo Jae Suk was punished by Krystal or when she was paired with Gary. What about when they pretended to be new students and surprise the other students for some great reactions? Don’t forget they had a whole show where they hung out in New Zealand. The show Krystal did with her sister might have not been the most exciting or riveting content, but provided an intimate look into their relationship. Luna’s Alphabet is my favorite YouTube channel right now. But the thing that sealed the deal was their concert blu-ray. 

Dimension 4 – Docking Station in Japan is incredible. It’s one of my favorite concerts ever. Because of that deep catalog, there wasn’t a dull moment. Their MC segments were fun and cute. Not to mention the blu-ray is absolutely stunning to watch. I still get the itch to watch it. 

They might not have one of my all-time favorite songs, but they have one of my favorite projects, at least in the realm of girl groups. I hope they stay together for more concerts releases like this one. That would also mean that Luna gets to perform Free Somebody on a stage like that. I would like that. 

Ultimately, what f(x) has in common with the other groups in my five is that I love their complete body of work. From the music, concerts, promotional appearances, and everything in-between. Perhaps if I had given myself over to their fandom there wouldn’t have been a debate. Apologies to Wonder Girls, SweetS, Kara, or any other girl group I’ve enjoyed. f(x) barreled their way to the top five.