The trainees gathered in one of the practice studios to watch a video announcement from Lee Seung Gi. He gave further details for the number of members for each song being performed for the concept evaluation assignment.
Each song was set to have a maximum of 5 members. However the rosters were quite uneven in the aftermath of the second ranking:
“I Wish” – 7 members
“Rollin Rollin”, “I Am” and “Rumor” – 6 members
“Let’s Meet Again” – 4 members
“1000%” – 1 member
The teams that exceeded 5 members had to vote their fellow trainee(s) out of the group. Those who were exiled to limbo would then be re-assigned to a different song. That meant 1 person each from “I Am”, “Rollin Rollin” and “Rumor” were out and 2 people from “I Wish” were also on the chopping block.
Once the bad news was dropped the good came in the form of the benefits for this evaluation. 130,000 votes will be added for the winning team. Seung Gi asked the trainees to think carefully about who they remove in order to receive the benefit at the end.
Each team thought about whom would best fit the concept of their song. For “Let’s Meet Again” they thought about whom they could add. It came down to Min Ju and Sakura who both had the charms that would work for their group and they were hoping that one of them would be available.
The “I Wish” team was intact after the rankings. They had too many vocalists and it created an imbalance. Gyu Ri and Min Ju lobbied hard to stay in the group as they felt their roles were minimal at best and they presented no threat to the others.
Those who set to perform “Rumor” were all good singers and dancers but none of them excelled at rapping. Cho Won said she wanted to stay on the team whether she does main vocals or rapping as she felt like she was the one most likely to be moved.
Chae Yeon spoke up in the meeting for team “I Am”. She let everyone know that she believed that the song would help boost her confidence and allow her to show what she is capable of. In addition, she would do her best as team leader to help the others achieve their goal of taking first place. Ye Na also begged to stay on the team believing she could convey the feeling of the song with her performance.
Yu Jin felt it was herself or Chae Yeon would be the ones voted out. Her reasoning for herself was that she noticed she did not stand out at all while performing the song.
“Rollin Rollin” had various members petitioning to stay with Won Young going to shameless lengths to show her desperation. Goto Moe was also concerned about being booted from the group but did not express that in any way to the rest of her team.
There was a discussion among the “Let’s Meet Again” team about who would be eliminated from the other groups. They believed Moe was the most likely one to be removed from her team. And they were correct in that assumption as Goto Moe was first to be banished to the room of shame called limbo.
Joining her were Shitao Miu (from “Rumor”), Lee Chae Yeon (from “I Am”), Miyawaki Sakura and Kim Min Ju. (from “I Wish”)
After the decisions were made the banished trainees went to the studio for “Let’s Meet Again”. The members were surprised that Sakura was available but asked if anyone else wanted to join their team. Min Ju raised her hand stating it was one of the songs she believes she could perform well. Her wish did not come true as Sakura was picked over her.
By default the remaining four trainees joined team “1000%” with Miyazaki Miho.
With all the teams formed it was time for Lee Seung Gi to make a surprise personal visit to the trainees to give them a pep talk. He answered various questions giving them sage advice. An example being “Rough seas make great seamen.” Basically telling them if they can make it through the arduous process of Produce 48 they will become stronger people in the end whether they make it into the final group or not.
Evaluation time came after with Lee Seung Gi and the choreographers of the various songs joining the main trainers to see how the trainees have progressed with their songs.
First up were the “Rollin Rollin” team. Hitomi was called cute and like a baby by Cheetah. The overall impression after their performance was that Hitomi sang her part very well and that Won Young was a good choice for center.
The only criticisms they received were that they did not give enough energy to a song that is supposed to feel refreshing. Na Young was also advised to sing her lines with power and confidence and to not look so uneasy when she performs.
Second were team “I Wish” where once again Go Eun and Yu Ri battled it out for the main vocal position. Who the producers chose as the main vocalist was left as a cliffhanger.
Team “I Am” were full of talented members with high ranks. During their evaluation Juri was praised for her Korean enunciation during her rap verses. However, Ka Eun’s rapping was deemed to be unsatisfactory. She also gave off too much of a sexy vibe for the song disrupting the balance of the group.
The “Let’s Meet Again” team were called balanced by the trainers. Their evaluation performance did not start off well and it got worse as it went along making the choreographer Chae Da Som rather upset by the end of the song. Her comments were that Yi Ren was rather gloomy and expressionless and did not express the feeling of the choreography.
She was also criticized for her lack of vocal prowess for the center position. Lee Hong Ki interjected with some advice for all the trainees. He said they should be careful picking centers. A pretty face is not enough and they should choose someone who will captivate the audience with their presence and talent. Lee Seung Gi agreed and asked the trainees to keep that in mind.
It was not all doom for them as Hae Yoon was complimented for her strong vocals.
The “Rumor” team had Cho Won and Eun Bi competing for main vocal part with the latter winning out in the end. Cho Won ended up with sub-vocalist 1 position instead. That was flipped when Eun Bi volunteered to give up her position try rapping instead to allow Sian to take a vocalist position.
That was flipped again by the producers after hearing both Eun Bi and Cho Won rap and their positions were swapped. Their evaluation from the trainers was negative. Cho Won’s volume when rapping was inconsistent going from loud to soft. Eun Bi was told her voice was too soft when singing the chorus.
Their dancing was a different story as they managed to give off a powerful performance. They were asked to think about how they interpret the song and discuss it among themselves to make the vocals match the dance.
Team “1000%” trained very hard to learn the song after only being together for one day. The trainers had positive comments for them and were impressed they were able to memorize everything so quickly. Min Ju was pointed out for her improvement and May J Lee believed she suited the song.
Soyou commented that Miho did really well and that it sounded like her own song. Lastly Bae Yoon Jung liked Miu’s facical expressions and Chae Yeon was perfect in her eyes. The other trainers agreed that she was a great fit for the team and the song.
Once the initial evaluations were done with it was a fast-forward in time to the actual stage performances for the concept evaluation. Several former trainees were shown in the audience as the camera panned through the crowd. Of course the actual performances were not shown and the episode ended with a teaser for “Rumor”. The results of all the hard work for this assignment will be seen in the next episode of Produce 48.
This episode followed the pattern of practice and rehearsal drama established throughout past episodes of this program. With the number of contestants whittled down there still seemed to be some continuity with storylines developed up to this point in time. Particularly Cho Won surprising everyone with her skill set and the ongoing vocal battle between Go Eun and Yu Ri. Lastly, seeing Chae Yeon get the boot from her group was unexpected but she seemed to bounce back quite nicely with her new team.